Growlers: Big Red Ball Saturday, Lost Forty Double Love Honey Returns

Current local beer recommendation: Campfire Pastries from Rebel Kettle Brewing Company (available on tap and in four-packs to go)

The first Central Arkansas beer event of 2020 is Saturday evening when the Big Red Ball Homebrew Contest comes to the Historic Arkansas Museum. Homebrewers from around the state will be competing to have their brew named the “Official Beer of Kickball.” The winner will have their beer brewed by Stone’s Throw Brewing in time for the start of the Little Rock Kickball Association season this spring. So far, Big Red Ball has more than 70 entrants, so there will be plenty of beer to taste as well as heavy hors d’oeuvres. Tickets to the event are $30. The VIP tickets are already sold out, and general admission will probably sell out soon, so you need to get your tickets ASAP if you plan to attend. Big Red Ball starts at 7 p.m. at the Historic Arkansas Museum on Saturday.

One of the best seasonal brews in Arkansas is back today at Lost Forty Brewing. Today’s Freshcut Monday release is the return of Double Love Honey Anniversary Doppelbock. This 9% ABV doppelbock deservedly won bronze at the World Beer Cup in 2018. Its notes of toffee, raisin and caramel make up, in my opinion, one of the best-balanced brews in the state. It is available today at 4 p.m. on tap and in four-packs to go. For those of you who can’t make it to the taproom today, don’t fret. Lost Forty knows how much you love this one and is distributing it statewide in 2020. Keep an eye out at your local liquor store.

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Once again, Rebel Kettle Brewing Company proves it is not satisfied with releasing a single beer for its 4:30 Thursday event. This week is again a double release with a pair of barrel-aged sours. First is Robby Rose, a 6.2% ABV sour with notes of raspberry and lemon.  Robby Rose is named in memory of a friend of Rebel Kettle who helped spark their passion for sour beers. Also releasing is Berrily Beer, another 6.2% ABV brew. This one is created with saison and blackberries grown in Judsonia. Both of these sours fermented in oak barrels for several months, so they should have well-rounded tannins and vanilla notes. Robby Rose and Berrily Beer are only available in large-format bottles to go.

If you missed the big barrel-aged release from Stone’s Throw last week, you’re in luck. The brewery is tapping its bourbon barrel-aged RoggenDunkelDoppelbock at Stone’s Throw Stifft Station on Tuesday. It’s a giant 14% ABV brew that aged in Rock Town Distillery peated whiskey barrels and debuted at Rock Town last Friday. It goes on tap when the doors open at 4 p.m. Then for its #NewBrewFriday, Stone’s Throw is debuting Dirty 7 IPA. This 7% ABV ale is single-hopped with Mosaic hops and is lower in gluten content than most craft beer. Dirty 7 is on tap at 4 p.m. at Stone’s Throw MacPark.

Finally, Flyway Brewing will soon have its popular Low Flock IPA back on the tapwall. The brewery didn’t know if it would be returning this week or next, so keep an eye on Flyway’s Facebook page. Low Flock is one of the better hazy IPAs in the market and well worth seeking out when it’s available.

Do you have any beer news to share with us? Email steveshuler@gmail.com.

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Growlers: Big Red Ball Saturday, Lost Forty Double Love Honey Returns