Now… We just have to fill ’em with beer! Coming soon, thirsty friends! Cheers! pic.twitter.com/jovjxCTTAn
— Wort Hog Brewing Co. (@whbcllc) December 2, 2016
After more than two years of planning, Cris Bezdek, Matt Lutz and Lou Oliva will unveil Wort Hog Brewing Company. The three met while working at the Department of Defense, and like most of the current wave of brewery owners, their love of beer led to opening a brewery.
The Warrenton brewery, a play on words—wort is a sweet liquid drained from mash and fermented to make beer and whiskey—will have its taps ready for a grand opening party this Saturday.
Brewmaster Jeremy Hunt, with more than 13 years in the industry, including stints at Redhook (Oregon) and as head brewer at Dogfish Head (Delaware), started out as a theology major. Hunt and his then-girlfriend-now-wife began as enthusiastic homebrewers. Before finishing his degree, Hunt lined up a job with what is now Ipswich Ale Brewery (Massachusetts) and what he called his “cool gig” was a point of jealousy among friends. Crafting beer isn’t all glam though; Hunt started out washing kegs and cleaning tanks, a job he describes as “one of the most important jobs in the brewery—quality control is from grain to glass.”
While he’s had many opportunities to work in various capacities at various brewing companies, Hunt is excited about the challenges of working with a brand new brewery from the ground up. “We want to have a beer for everybody, to challenge people on certain things–what beer can be–but also to uphold the tradition that’s been going on for more than 3,000-4,000 years. We want to honor tradition but also break new ground.”
The brewery will debut with 10 beers on tap, from traditional German styles (Whoopin’ Sticke, an sticke altbier) to the currently trendy fruity IPAs (Game Day, a session IPA with varying hops and fruit).
Food is sourced from neighboring Black Bear Bistro & Brick Oven. The 1,800-square-foot space will include two mezzanine levels, a full rooftop patio and bar, poured concrete heated countertops with special coasters (to keep your hands warm and your beer cold!) and six tanks with capacity for 30,000 pounds of beer. // Opening Saturday; Wort Hog Brewing Company: 41 Beckham St., Warrenton