Moody Brews and Vino’s Brewpub head brewer Josiah Moody has accepted the head brewer job at Bike Rack Brewing in Bentonville and will join the company in Northwest Arkansas next month. The move is a huge shake-up for Little Rock’s beer scene as one of its most respected brewers is departing. For Moody, though, the chance to join a brewery on the rise was too much to pass up.
“Bike Rack is kind of like Vino’s,” says Moody. “It’s very small but very active. They have three or four well-received beers, we’ll keep at least two and hopefully improve on them. The other two (IPA and double IPA), we’ll have a transitional period and tweak those.”
Bike Rack Brewing is moving from a small three-barrel system to a much larger 20-barrel warehouse with a targeted opening of mid-March. Moody will join the Bike Rack team next month to begin working on recipes and start making his stamp on the brewery.
“We’ll have some space to do some barrel aging,” says Moody. “And the Moody Brews line will continue at Bike Rack. But first things first, the goal is to make Bike Rack beer as clean and as good as we can make it.” Moody has been brewing in several places over the past few years. He launched Moody Brews as a gypsy brewing project out of Krebs, Oklahoma in 2014 after serving as head brewmaster at Vino’s. He then helped Damgoode Brews get off the ground before returning to Vino’s and simultaneously running their beer lineup along with Moody Brews. Moody says leaving Little Rock won’t be easy.
“Little Rock is where it all started for me,” says Moody. “Professionally, with my friends, Little Rock is a huge part of our identity. It’s where my daughter was born. At the same time, we’re excited about the future, for my family and my daughter’s future, and we’re very excited to take on a new big project.”
Moody says talks are already underway at Vino’s to name a replacement, a development we will keep our eyes on. In the immediate future, Moody will be hosting one of his final events in Little Rock Sunday evening, a beer and cheese pairing at Kent Walker Artisan Cheese. Tickets for that event are on sale now.