The 2017 Jupiter Craft Brewers Festival

January is one of my favorite times of the year for a few reasons. The holiday madness is over, the Christmas decorations are down (hopefully), and the Jupiter Craft Brewers Festival is back once again. The Jupiter Craft Brewers Festival is held at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, FL. Roger Dean is the Spring Training home of both the St. Louis Cardinals and Florida Marlins and the festival is held on the outskirts of the stadium itself. This year there were 85 breweries, cideries, and meaderies on hand to help tickle your taste buds. I arrived around 11:30 and quickly headed over to the cash line because in typical fashion I procrastinated just long enough and missed the chance to buy a ticket online. The festival, which is in its 11th year, releases 1,500 tickets online and 1,200 tickets in person at the gate. As luck would have it, I got a call after waiting for a grueling 5 minutes in line, which was just long enough to have my ID checked and bracelet received. The call was from my buddies who had located a ticket while they waited in the pre-purchase line. For those planning to attend in the future, buy your ticket online. It saves you the hassle of watching everyone else visit tent after tent while you’re still waiting to pay your $35.00 entry fee. After joining my friends in the pre-purchase line and exchanging cash for a ticket, I was handed a cup from my buddy and told to dig into the bottles that were already popped. The first beer, of four, that I sampled in our mini beer share was the 2016 version of Wicked Weed Brewing’s ‘Angel of Darkness’. I always forget how damn good that beer is! The next offering was ‘JDawg Porter’ brewed with pecan and vanilla from Fat Point Brewing in Punta Gorda, FL. It wasn’t a bad beer, but it was overshadowed by the other three we sampled. Next was an Imperial Stout with coffee that was brewed in a collaboration between Trillium and Evil Twin Brewing called ‘Dusk Trill Dawn’. If you can get your hands on this beer, you should! It was fantastic! Funky Buddha Breweries ‘Last Buffalo in the Park’ was the final beer poured just a few minutes before the gates were opened. That was my first opportunity to try the Buffalo and it did not disappoint.

2017 Jupiter Craft Brewers Festival

I always tell my wife I’m a champion in the art of multi-tasking and I proved that by finishing my beer while getting my ticket scanned AND explaining to the volunteer at the gate that we were indeed allowed to bring backpacks into the festival. I guess I was pretty convincing because that’s all it took for her to let us through. I mean, where am I supposed to put all of the festival schwag that I collect throughout the day without a bag? Once through the ticketing portion, we gathered in the stadium concourse like cattle ready to begin our afternoon grazing session. A salivating mass waiting in anticipation of the brews that lay ahead.

2017 Jupiter Craft Beer Festival

A few minutes pass and the countdown to 1:00 pm begins. The gates are opened and it’s Black Friday at the neighborhood box store all over again with people heading in different directions to gain their first taste of the beautiful nectar that we so affectionately call craft beer. My first stop was Proof Brewing. I’m a big fan of pretty much everything I have tried from them, plus the only time they are available in South Florida is at a festival. They brought ‘Tropical Uprising Ipa’, a Belgian Strong Ale called ‘Peach Tea Litany of Angels’, and their ‘Coffee Creatures in the Dark’ Milk Stout. All three were certainly worth the wait in line, but I was a bit disappointed that they didn’t bring one of their Berliner Weisse down this time since it’s one of the samples I look forward to every year.

2017 Jupiter Craft Beer Festival

Next, I hit Copperpoint Brewing for their B. Rabbit Espresso Cream Stout and the Walking Tree Brewery for their ‘Limey Sailor’ Berliner Weisse and ‘Duke Sniders’ Imperial Stout. At that point, one of my buddies got my attention and said I needed to head over to the Finback Brewery tent because they were pouring an amazing black Gose. Finback Brewery is out of Queens, NY and has become friends with Civil Society Brewing so they were not only in town for the festival, but also to brew a chocolate IPA with the Civil boys. Back to the Gose. ‘The Sun is Too Bright Black Gose’ aged in red wine barrels was absolutely mind-blowing. The red wine wasn’t overpowering and everything seemed to meld together so very well. They were also pouring their Double IPA ‘MK Ultra’ which was delicious. I noticed a few cold cans behind the table and asked for a pour. I was delighted to receive a taste of ‘Red Shift’, which is a sour brewed with cranberries and the Japanese fruit Yuzu.

2017 Jupiter Craft Beer Festival
Source: The Japanese Yuzu fruit.

Tampa Bay Brewing had their golden ale named ‘Quat’, which is brewed with Kumquat and is very citrus forward. I stopped at Coppertail Brewing to try their ‘Guava Pastelitos’ Berliner Weisse and was once again blown away by it. Brewzzi was next on the list. Matt Manthe, who will be opening Odd Breed Wild Ales early this year, was representing Brewzzi with a barrel aged sour Porter called ‘Adjunct Fever’. It was brewed with cherry vanilla and cacao nibs. I was already eager for his brewery to open, but this beer just added to that excitement. I can’t wait to see what he comes up with for his new brewery.

2017 Jupiter Craft Beer Festival

I tried a Serrano Pepper Amber Ale called ‘Son of Sea Biscuit’ from Barley Mow Brewing, which was very well done. Just enough heat to keep you interested, but not enough to set your face on fire. I also tried their ‘Maven Chocolate Milk Stout’, which was a nice calming beer to follow the peppers. Devour Brewing brought a Mango Tea IPA and their Blizzard of Darkness Milk Stout aged on toasted coconut and Madagascar vanilla beans amongst others. I had tried both beers before and rated them a tick higher this time than I had the first time. Chip is definitely stepping up his game.

2017 Jupiter Craft Beer Festival

The Native Brewing Company brought a Scotch Ale aged in rye whiskey barrels called ‘Beam Me Up Scotchy’ that was marvelous. The Scotch Ale is a favorite style of mine, so I tend to be a tad picky and this one did not disappoint. The Brooklyn Brewery was only pouring from bottles, but I did stop to try their newest addition, the ‘Bel Air Sour’, which is a nice crisp dry-hopped sour. I happened upon the 26 Degree Brewing tent at the just right moment because they were having a timed release of their ‘Bourbon Barrel aged Scotch Ness Monster’. Talk about the beer gods being on my side! It was what Scotch Ales and bourbon barrel aging were meant to be. I really need to make it down to Pompano Beach to review these guys.

2017 Jupiter Craft Beer Festival

I stopped into the Civil Society Brewing tent for a bit to try their mouth-watering Double IPA, ‘Seventh Wonder’, and hang out for a bit. The craft beer community is filled with some really fantastic people and the folks at Civil run at the top of that list for me. After a bit, I headed to the Orchid Island Brewery tent where head brewer and co-owners Alden and Valerie Bing were pouring ‘Je Ne Sais Quoi Saison’ and a Berliner Weisse called ‘Beachside’. For the Berliner, you had the option to add one of two house-made syrups using either locally farmed Honeybell oranges or locally farmed key limes. All three were absolutely amazing! I shot the breeze with Alden for a while until we were joined by Civil Society’s Evan Miller for a bit of craft beer shenanigans. It was the perfect way to end yet another successful Jupiter Craft Brewers Festival. Once the festival started to shut down at 5:00 pm I visited with a few friends before walking over to Civil Society to close out the day.

2017 Jupiter Craft Beer Festival
Source: Orchid Island Brewery. Evan Taylor (left) of Civil Society & Alden Bing (right) of Orchid Island.

If you haven’t been to this festival yet, I would highly suggest planning for it next year. It makes for a really entertaining day between all the beers and the continuous live music flowing through the crowd. Just make sure to have a plan for getting home after this drinking session as you probably won’t want to drive. If you’re coming from out-of-town there is a hotel within walking distance. If possible, try to get your hands on tickets to the exclusive event the night before, which is called the Field of Beers. Tickets are $100 apiece and there are only 300 available. Fifteen teams of brewers and Palm Beach area chefs are paired up for a beer and food pairing unlike any other. It was named the USA Today Readers’ Choice 4th best craft beer festival in the nation in 2016. Plus in all seriousness, there isn’t a better part of the country to be in during this time of year. It’s hard to beat a sunny 70-degree day in late January while sipping on some of the finest craft brews.

I’m already looking forward to next year.

Cheers

 

Copperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.com

Copperpoint Brewing Co.

Florida Craft Brewery: Copperpoint Brewing Co.

Established: May 11th, 2015

Location: 151 Commerce Road, Boynton Beach, FL 33426Copperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.com

Known For: The B. Rabbit espresso stout on Nitro, G (grapefruit) Saison, Copperpoint Lager, and One Love IPA are what keep the regulars coming back. Unfortunately, One Love wasn’t on tap while I was there, but I was able to try the other three and I can see why they are so popular with the locals. The Copperpoint Lager is a great gateway beer for those who haven’t quite gotten their feet wet in the craft beer scene.

Copperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.comCurrent Beer Menu: With normally 13 beers on tap there is no question Copperpoint will have at least one beer you’ll enjoy. From their Red IPA, the A-10 Hophog, to their Imperial Porter, the Cox Diesel, you will be hard pressed to make a bad choice. If you just can’t seem to make up your mind flights are offered which consist of four 5oz pours.

Price Range: Pricing per glass is between $5.00 and $7.00 depending on the style of beer you order. A flight of beer will run you $7.00 no matter which style you choose. Growlers are also offered. Depending on the style of beer a 32oz growler can run between $7.00 and $15.00 while a 64oz growler will run between $13.00 and $15.00. If you don’t already have your own growler you can purchase either a 32oz or 64oz for $6.00.

Wine Menu: So your significant other was nice enough to join you at the brewery, but doesn’t drinkCopperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.com beer? Copperpoint has you covered. They offer at least four choices of both red and white wines. A glass will run between $8.00 and $10.00 per.

Food Menu: You have a couple of choices here. You can either have food delivered from any number of eateries or visit the food truck, which parks directly in front of the brewery and rotates daily. Monday through Friday the food truck arrives at 5pm, Saturday at 3pm, and Sunday at noon. Copperpoint keeps an updated food truck calendar on their website for your viewing pleasure.

Copperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.comAmbiance: When I walked in the front door, I had a sense of stepping back in time to an American pub one of my great-grandfathers might have had a pint in. The wood, brick, and copper that adorn your surroundings seem to want to tell a story. Your eyes are then pulled across the room to the bar area where a window beckons you into the heart of the brewery. The lights are kept relatively low just as they were at Twisted Trunk. Is there a pattern forming? The grid ceiling doesn’t hold ceiling tiles, but it does hold strings of blue lights which add a little something extra to the relaxing feel of the taproom. No one under the age of 21 is allowed after 8pm and if you are interested in a brewery tour, a group tour is held on Saturday afternoon at 3pm.

Bar Seating: The bar has seating for twenty with a mixture of eight high tops that seat six or eight. There are eight booths which form the outerCopperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.com seating area along the walls. For those looking to drink their libations under the sun, a porch area has been provided with four large picnic tables and seven relaxing chairs. You can also venture upstairs to the game room where ping-pong, foosball, corn hole, and a few arcade games have been provided.  Three leather couches and a high top table make relaxation the name of the game upstairs.

Staff: Brie, Diane, and Irena handled the bar like seasoned professionals. Irena is working toward her bachelor’s degree in chemistry and science at FAU. Once she graduates, she hopes to become the Quality Control Manager for the brewery.

Merch: Hats ($25), tank tops and t-shirts ($20), long sleeve shirts ($25), and work shirts ($40) are available to purchase. If that’s not enough youCopperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.com can also buy a pint glass ($5), snifter ($12), koozie ($3), or growler koozie ($10).

Membership offered: Copperpoint doesn’t have anything available right now, but I was toldCopperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.com anything is possible in the future.

Best days or time of year to go: If you’re looking for a quiet time to experience Copperpoint’s offerings, then the 12:00 – 3:00pm weekday hours are your most promising. The crowd files in pretty quickly once 4:30 starts inching its way in.

Regular Hours: Monday – Thursday: 12:00pm – 10:00pm, Friday – Saturday: 12:00pm – 11:00pm, and Sunday 12:00pm – 8:00pm

Happy Hour: Monday – Friday: 3:00pm – 6:00pm

Copperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.comFun Fact:

The Trula Saison is named after brewmaster and part owner, Matt Cox’s grandmother.

Al Lettera, Jr. who is also part owner named the A-10 Hophog after his grandfather who was an engineer and pilot of the famed tank killer, the A-10 Warthog.

Corey, the assistant brewer was nice enough to share this bit of information with me. Cox Diesel, the imperial porter, is going to be put into one Buffalo Trace Bourbon barrel, four Heaven Hills barrels, and one Pinot Noir barrel for upwards of 12 months. The finished product will be used forCopperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.com special occasions like Copperpoint’s anniversary for example.

Matt Cox has taken home over 50 awards for his beers in the last 15 years, including a gold medal at the Great American Beer Festival (GABF), gold medals at the North American Brewing Association, multiple medals at the U.S. Beer Championships, and multiple Grand National Champion Awards at the United States Beer Tasting Championships.

Overall Rating (1-5): I had heard good things about Copperpoint before I was able to visit so I’m happy that they lived up to the word on the street. I have no problem at all giving them a well deserved 5. All of their beers were on point while the Cox Diesel was a step above the rest. I almost Copperpoint Brewing, Florida craft beer, craft beer, beer, craftdaddyblog.comforgot. The bathroom was pretty badass as well.

What was missing: For me, the only thing missing was an imperial stout, which I had apparently just missed by a few days.

In closing, everything from the staff to the beer was top-notch. Copperpoint is definitely yet another of the newer South Florida breweries that should be put on your must-try list.

Did I leave anything out or is there something else you would like to know about the Copperpoint Brewing Company? Please don’t hesitate to leave me a comment below.

Cheers!