Friday, January 20, 2012

On Tap in Buenos Aires - Cork IPA

Cork IPA is an interesting brewery, one whose concept I have not seen elsewhere. They brew only versions of India Pale Ale. Their beer are quite varied and interesting. I first had it at a launch party they were having for their Black Elephant IPA, the first Black IPA in Argentina. They also have a Belgian and American take on the IPA style as well. Their newest beer will be Honey Mustang, brewed with honey sourced from an abbey in Entre Rios, Argentina.

I returned recently to that first place I had their beer (Danilas Resto Bar in Palermo - J.A. Cabrera 4802) for  an event they were throwing with Somos Cerveceros (Argentina's Homebrewing club) - a coccion en vivo or live brewing demo. Right there on the corner of J.A. Cabrera and Armenia was a full homebrewing rig and a crew of homebrewers sharing the workload to make a batch of IPA. Smiling and sweating away, they took turns hand milling the malt that was being added to the mash as I arrived.

There was plenty of beer on hand from Cork and the event turned a lot of heads in a trendy area with lots of shoppers, diners and foot traffic. Great promotion for Cork, Danilas, Somos Cerveceros and beer in general. At one point, a homebrewer named Buba showed up with a keg of his own beer (a bananna-licious Weizen) and shared around glasses right there on the sidewalk. There is something you will never see in Canada. I also saw something I had never seen before: a modified bike pump that pressurized his keg by hand pumping. Not ideal, but it worked.

The beer brewing brewed was an IPA, of course. A very cool addition was some sugar syrup with added Indian spices. I don't know where this beer will be served but I want to try some.

Enjoy some photos from the event and keep reading further for an interview with Alan Sullivan, one of the masterminds behind the Cork IPA operation. May I suggest you enjoy an IPA while browsing?

Adventures In Alcohol:  Your name and logo is inspired from Ireland (Cork is an Irish city). What is it about Irish beer that made you pick that name?

Alan Sullivan: I started homebrewing almost 10 years ago. When searching for a name (for the future commercial beer...back then) I named it after the County where my family was from in Ireland.

I find it interesting that you guys make a black IPA, a Belgian IPA and a Pale ale, yet not an Irish-style stout. Is there any plans for one in the future?

Actually we only brew IPAs , the so called pale ale was a not very hoppy brew and a little too much caramel, but it will get better in the next batch.The hole idea is to not brew the classic Irish style, rather make a twist mixing it with a Californian character .

Right now, all the cork products are all on Draught. Where can thirsty people go to try your beer in BA?

For the moment you can get a good ol' pint at •Danila's(Cabrera y Armenia - Palermo) •Danila (Bernardo de Yrigoyen y Av de Mayo- downtown) •Breoghan (Bolivar y EEUU - San Telmo) Coming soon Tavernabier (quilmes) We also rent choperas for party's

Please tell the readers about a special beer you were part of, DestrIPAtor. What does the name mean, and talk a little bit about how the collaboration happened.

DestrIPAtor was the first Collaboration beer made amongst 3 microbreweries in Argentina. (Una Mas / Breoghan / Cork Brewing) I just had returned from a trip around California visiting more than 25 breweries and assisted the Craft Brewers Conference at San Francisco. when I got back I really wanted to do something different and a collab brew was a good idea. DestrIPAtor comes from the Spanish "destripar" or cut your guts out and since it was a 100 ibus double IPA with almost 9% alc. we made a contest and a home brewer came up with the name...we brewed 300 600cc bottles and they sold out immediately !! We're planning on brewing it again

Who are the main people on the Cork team and what do they do?

We are 3 at the staff 
•Jimmy ( in charge of extraterrestrial communications) •
Tebi ( in charge of keeping our numbers on track....thank god) 
•Tala (me) ( head brewer, captain without steer and brewing fundamentalist)

What are your goals for the future? What are some things you want to see happen for the beer industry in Argentina?

We're looking forward to brew new beers and reinvent and mix styles such as honey IPA , weizenIPA and a open our own brew pub (so we can play some music without having the neighbors calling the police)

I really hope Argentine consumers drop shitty-crapy-and soulless industrial beers and turn into craft. There's a lot of great microbrews to discover

You told me that your Black IPA is the first of that style in Argentina. What made you guys brew that beer?

Nobody was Brewing a Black IPA and... It was freaking time!! IPAs are my weakness and while in California I tried many ...not too many...well can't remember how many but surely not enough... So since I wanted to keep on drinking Blk IPAs...just went to the brewery and made a batch and still brewing it!

Anything else?

 •never trust a brewer in a suit
•light industrial beers are like rowing in a canoe... It's f#cking close to water
•Never trust a beer that invest more money in adds than in malts
•support your local Craft Brewery
•blue pill or red pill? Wake up Neo! Drink craft!


Check out more pictures from the event from Que Paso Anoche. If you want to hire an event photographer in Buenos Aires, call them!