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Stillwater Artisanal Ales

About a year ago we were down at Max’s for one of their Rare & Obscura beer festivals. If you’ve never been, we urge you to make the trip for one. Casey Hard - Max’s head beer honcho - knows his stuff as well as anyone out there, and makes it a point to get his hands on anything and everything good – no matter how hard it is to come by. But what caught our eye most at that festival wasn’t anything flowing from the draft lines – it was something brought to us by good friend and renowned beer writer Chuck Cook. It was homebrew made just a few blocks away in downtown Baltimore, and it was positively stunning stuff. Brian “Stillwater” Strumke was the mad genius behind these creations, and upon meeting him, he shared a dizzying array of additional gems – everything totally original, everything expertly crafted. With a penchant for Belgian saisons and sour ales, Brian created exquisite ales that could stand up against anything done on a professional scale. Things that could (and indeed did) fool some of the world’s foremost experts in a blind tasting of the world’s great lambic beers. This was truly inspired stuff.

So when Brian decided a few months back to finally make the leap into commercial brewing, we offered to help at the drop of a hat. To start, there will be two facets to this venture – one line of beers brewed domestically, and another crafted at some of our favorite small breweries in Europe, then imported back to the U.S. First up for release is the Stateside Saison – an inspired twist on a Belgian saison brewed by Brian at a small brewery out in western MD. Trust us when we say that this is something you’re definitely not going to want to miss.