J. Vincent Piluso 3:20 p.m., May 20
Amid the brew-fueled post-event revelry at this weekend’s World Beer Cup award ceremony, I took a few minutes and my last few functioning brain cells to interview Iron Fist Brewing Company brewmaster Brandon Sieminski.
You may remember this young brewer and his up-and-coming brewery from my January Vista Beer Tour series of posts. On the visit I wrote about there, Iron Fist was jam-packed with beer fans enjoying Sieminski’s mostly Belgian-style ales. It seemed only a matter of time before they’d need to expand.
Turns out, that assessment was right on the money. They’re about to take over the business park space next to theirs. In doing so, they will double their brewery and tasting room square footage. They already have a 60-barrel fermenter ready to install in that soon-to-be ceded space, and a shiny new bottling line is also en route.
On the beer front, there’s fun news to report. Sieminski is preparing to partake in a collaboration brew session with Stone Brewing Co. and the winner of Stone’s annual March Madness Homebrew Competition, Ken Schmidt. Schmidt is a well known local homebrewer whose lists of accomplishments already includes taking top honors in this competition in 2009 with a Kona Coffee, Macadamia, Coconut Porter, which he brewed on a commercial scale with brewers from Stone and Maui Brewing Company.
This time around, he’s tabbed Sieminski to help bring his mint chocolate imperial stout to life and retail outlets. The beer is designed to drink like an Andes mint, utilizing mint syrup to bring the after-dinner freshness. Apparently, fresh mint tends to be too astringent. The beer, which will go by Ken Schmidt / Iron Fist / Stone Mint Chocolate Imperial Stout on shelves, will likely hit said shelves in June or July.
Iron Fist Brewing Company is located at 1305 Hot Springs Way.