Tag Archives: Brickway Brewery and Distillery

Final Dog Days of Summer

September 20, 2018 by

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Pick of the Week—Saturday, Sept. 23: Puppies and pumpkins? Why not? Take your pup to Dog Day at the Pumpkin Patch at Skinny Bones Pumpkin Patch in Blair. Doggie admission of $5 will benefit the Nebraska Humane Society. Regular admission will apply for you humans. Be sure your pups are dressed for success in the doggie costume contest. The contest takes place in the morning, with all the regular fall fun happening throughout the day. Check out the Rolling Racers, Jack O’ Shooter, Frankenslide, and numerous other attractions. There’s plenty of food on hand as well, so make a day of it and end the night with a bonfire. Learn more here.

Thursday, Sept. 20: Get an early start on tailgating this weekend at the Midlands Humane Society “Tail”gate. While there’s no stadium involved, you can take a tour of the facility, learn about volunteer opportunities, and (best of all) spend time with the beautiful critters. This event is put on by the young professionals group, Impact CB. Parking is somewhat limited, so get your friends together and carpool on over. Find out more here.

Friday, Sept. 21: Don’t miss the inaugural show at The Hug Center, a new arts-focused community event space on 25th and Harney streets. Bang, Bang will showcase work by several talented artists, some well-known and others brand-new (check out 10-year-old Finn Michael Bainbridge) to the Omaha art scene. Music by Dojorok and Cult Play will help set the mood. A food truck will be on hand and beverages from Brickway Brewery & Distillery will also be available for the 6-10 p.m. event to provide you with ample sustenance as you peruse the gallery and meet the artists. Get the full rundown here.

Saturday, Sept. 22: Can’t wait to find out who’s up for an OEAA nomination this year? Well, you don’t have to because the wait is over. Head to the OEAA Nominee Reveal Party at Hi-Fi House this Saturday and be one of the first in the know. Cheer on your favorites as their names are announced live. here.

Saturday, Sept. 22: The fall equinox marks the official end of summer this Saturday, so feel free to start settling in to Halloween anticipation mode with Midwest Masquerade at The Waiting Room and Reverb Lounge. This annual event combines the winsome, electric vibe of a music festival with the elegant, mysterious feel of a traditional masquerade ball. The headlining artists are String Theory Music and Hyddin, with many more talented artists rounding things out. Formal attire (with mask!) is highly recommended for this 18 and over affair. Get your tickets here.

Pick Your Poison

August 23, 2018 by
Photography by Todd Ashmore, Kathy Rae Photography (provided) and contributed

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Pick of the Week—Saturday, August 25: Like quick road trips? Like books? Maybe even enough that you would like to write one? Then you won’t want to miss the Nebraska Book Festival this weekend in Lincoln. You can catch appearances by authors, workshops, book signings, exhibitors, poetry readings, and family activities. Best of all, you can commiserate with like-minded, book-loving fools about the loss of appreciation for physical, paper books and the enticing smell they emit. Plus, you can swing by the Omaha Publications booth to pick up our latest issues. Read more about it here. (You know you want to.)

Thursday, August 23rd to Saturday, August 25Fashionistas, unite! Omaha Fashion Week started on Monday, but things really get rolling tonight with the Harmony: Featured Designer Showcase. On Friday, you can catch the Movement: Featured Designer Showcase, with the VIP Runway Finale blowing things up on Saturday night. Be sure to arrive fashionably early to these events for the Pretty in Patina pre-parties. Be sure to check out this Encounter story on tonight’s ethereal headliner, AD Delgado. Learn more about this weekend’s schedule and get your tickets for Omaha’s most fashionable affair here.

Saturday, August 25Wondering what to do with that six-pack of Natty Ice your friend left in your fridge? Don’t wait for desperate times. Instead, bring it in for Brickway’s Fourth Annual Beer Amnesty Week. Bring in your swill, and they will replace it with a six-pack of their own flavorful brews for only $1. The week culminates in a fourth annual Slip & Slide Celebration at Sumtur Amphitheater where there will also be giant Jenga, live music, food, and of course, beer. A showing of Back to the Future Part III will happen once the sun goes down on the DeLorean. (And yes, there will be a DeLorean. No, you can’t drive it.) Learn more here.

Saturday, August 25Tired of the usual brunch regime? Check out theAugust Cars & Caffeine show this Saturday at Countryside Village. This is a monthly event from April through October, put on by Countryside Cars and Caffeine on the last Saturday of the month from 8-10 a.m. It’s a good reason to knock the dust off that classic beauty or to show off your new, high-end honey. Find out more here.

Sunday, August 26Get to HutchFEST’s third annual Maker’s Fair this Sunday for all the handmade goods you could want. With over 250 vendors showing off their wares in NoDo, you are sure to find that one thing to tie that room together—or that one thing you didn’t even know you needed until you saw it. Worried this will interfere with your Sunday funday plans? Don’t. There will be beer gardens and bloody mary/mimosa stations throughout, plus brunch-style food trucks on hand to feed your cravings. Throw in live music, lawn games, some swag, and the fact that this event benefits local non-profit New North Makerhood, and there’s really no better way to spend your last day of the weekend. Purchase your tickets (for only $5) here.

Being Present for the Small Moments

April 2, 2018 by

My mom passed away three days before this past Christmas. My friend and former co-worker Justin Swanson passed two days before that. Between the two, I wound up saying farewell to Justin in the ICU before his non-responsive body was unplugged from life support and then later, in the emergency room, grasping for the last warmth in my mom’s newly deceased body.

It was an intense, stomach-twisting week.

But I’m not writing this to talk about death. I’m writing this to talk about the small moments that precede death. So let’s go back to May 2014.

We were hosting the closing party for Big Omaha at House of Loom. Among the frivolity of the full-capacity night was a sea of sweaty entrepreneurs, a random guy playing the accordion to house beats, and one of Twitter’s co-founders getting down on the dance floor. In the history books of that club, it was a legendary night.

I can’t remember why, but my brother was in town, so in a rarity, my mom, dad, and brother all wound up stopping by. As we edged out a spot just above the stairs in the upper lounge, a photographer walked by and grabbed a beaming family photo. 

Later that night, my mom experienced two strokes. She was never the same after.

Between dementia and Addison’s disease, we witnessed her expressions, personality, and communication slowly diminish.

There were also frequent trips to the hospital. This past summer, while working just down the street from where she was hospitalized, I took my lunch break to spend some time with her.

She was alone when I arrived, but thanks to the steroids that were pumped into her IV, she was more alert and alive than I had seen her in a very long time.

Given her worsening condition, I knew there was something special about this moment. So I flipped open a voice recording app on my phone, and I began what would become a 40-minute conversation that covered everything from childhood memories, experiences she still wanted to have, and the feeling she got when my 1-year-old daughter—her granddaughter—kissed her.

After I said my goodbye and left the room, I made peace with whatever was to come next. She transitioned four months later.

Cut to Nov. 11, 2017. I had just finished DJing a private party in the Old Market, and after packing everything up, I had enough time to catch last call somewhere. With no agenda on where I’d end up, I aimlessly walked down the street where I saw a group of people gather before walking into Brickway Brewery.

My attention caught, I looked inside the near-empty bar to see Justin Swanson cleaning glassware. I walked in behind the group of people and as the crowd cleared, Justin’s eyes widened and his hands went up in surprise at the sight of me.

See, there was about three years of my life that I saw Justin more than my family. He was a bartender and I was a co-owner at House of Loom. Because of our roles, our lives were inextricably intertwined.

That is, until we closed on Jan. 1, 2017. After that, we took separate paths and mostly lost touch. At the time I didn’t even know he worked at Brickway. So while I sat in a near-empty
bar with Justin, we caught up and conversed like old friends.

This column appears in the March/April 2018 edition of Encounter.

To share your life perspectives—or whatever—with Brent Crampton and Encounter, email millennials@omahapublications.com.

Fall 2017 Brew Tour

September 22, 2017 by
Photography by Doug Meigs and provided

When temperatures drop and leaves crunch underfoot, Midwesterners crane their necks at the gray sky and try not to think of daily commutes soon to be spent in darkness. The wind is picking up, and the days grow shorter and shorter. Winter is coming, fellow Omahans. It’s time to find refuge from the cold.

Where better to stay cozy than in one of the metro’s growing number of microbreweries and affiliated brewpubs?  Read on for a complete list of venues producing and serving local beer (listed in alphabetical order). Choose a barstool, lest you are left out in the cold.

Benson Brewery
6059 N. Maple St.
402-934-8668
bensonbrewery.com

Adorned with wood floors and hipster lamps, Benson Brewery is situated in a remodeled space that was once home to a movie theater (in the early years of the 20th century). Enjoy a cold Karha-T as your body warms inside; this English ale is spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and vanilla, and is the perfect autumn beverage. Or choose one of the other nine beers or hard cider on tap.

Brickway Brewery & Distillery
1116 Jackson St.
402-933-2613
drinkbrickway.com

Also a distillery, this brewery has the unique ability to age their beers in whiskey barrels and their whiskey in beer barrels. Brickway keeps their Oktoberfest traditional, and this amber brew is featured at their Oktoberfest event, where attendees get to drink this beer straight from the tank it was brewed in.

Farnam House Brewing Co.
3558 Farnam St.
402-401-6086
farnamhousebrewing.com

After years of traveling Europe to study the best beers, the owners of Farnam House emphasize Old World-style brews with a Belgian and German influence. Thus, it is no surprise that they are proud of their Oktoberfest brew, aged for six weeks for a well-rounded and mellow finish. Their Spiced Tripel is another fall favorite packed with gravity.

Granite City Food & Brewery
1001 N. 102nd St.
402-393-5000
gcfb.com

A national brewpub franchise, Granite City locations brew beer on location. From their Batch 1000 Double IPA to Broad Axe Oatmeal Stout, Granite City has something for everyone. They offer an Oktoberfest and a Vanilla Porter on a seasonal basis, so get it while it lasts (and maybe snag some waffle fries, too).

Infusion Brewing Co.
Benson
402-916-9998
6115 Maple St.

Southwest Omaha
402-934-2064
6271 S. 118th Circle
infusionbrewing.com

A meat market turned brewery in downtown Benson, Infusion Brewing Company prides itself on adding unique ingredients—such as vanilla or cocoa—to their beers. In 2016, they also added a second brewery/tap room location on the edge of Sarpy County. Look out for their fall favorites: Infusionfest and Red X IPA. Vanilla Bean Blonde Ale is their top-seller through the year.

Jaipur Brewing Co.
10922 Elm St.
402-392-7331
jaipurindianfood.com

Located in Rockbrook Village, the Jaipur restaurant features a fusion of authentic Indian cuisine and on-site brewing of several unique beers. Their Jalapeño Ale offers a hot “kick” particularly appropriate for cold days. The restaurant’s owner says Jaipur has been selling beer since first opening in 1992—making it Nebraska’s first and Omaha’s longest-running craft brewery.

Kros Strain Brewing Co.
10411 Portal Road, Suite 102
402-779-7990
krosstrainbrewing.com

Brand new to the La Vista area in 2017, Kros Strain Brewing is “Nebraska Fresh,” a motto that is featured on their 24-foot mural that highlights beers set for release. Try one of their startup brews: Helles Creek, Dark Paradise, Fairy Nectar, and Supa Juice.

Lucky Bucket Brewing Co.
402-763-8868
11941 Centennial Road, Suite 1
luckybucketbrewing.com

Lucky Bucket Brewing Company hit the ground running in 2008 with their Pre-Prohibition Lager, perfected over time spent experimenting with barrel-aged beers and unique flavors. This eventually developed into five year-round beers and four seasonal favorites (including an Oktoberfest, which they boast “even Bavarian Prince Ludwig would trade his bride for”). Their Conspiracy Series also offers limited batch beers, and the brewery’s sister distillery—Cut Spike—offers craft liquors at the tap room.

Nebraska Brewing Co.
La Vista (tap room)
6950 S. 108th St.
402-934-7988

Shadow Lake Towne Center (brewpub)
7474 Towne Center Parkway, Suite 101
402-934-7100
nebraskabrewingco.com

Nebraska Brewing Company’s six standard beers offer year-round easy drinking for those who enjoy the hoppier side of the spectrum. If that’s not your ballgame, no worries. They also offer more than a dozen seasonal brews, along with several high-end craft options in their bottled Reserve Series. For those seeking something truly unique, there is the experimental Inception Series—barrel-aged beers that come in limited supply with names such as “Ninja Gnome” and “Fuchsian.”

Pint Nine Brewing Co.
10411 Portal Road
402-359-1418
pintninebrewing.com

Named for the traditional pint and nine ounce bottles that came to us from Europe back when we had to depend on them for good beer, the folks at Pint Nine appreciate a good German lager or English ale. But that doesn’t mean they don’t appreciate innovation. All you have to do is check out their Pink Peppercorn Wit or Hot Burst Blonde to realize that. The Papillion tap room just opened summer 2017.

Scriptown Brewing Co.
3922 Farnam St.
402-991-0506
scriptownbrewing.com

Do you know about “session beers?” Scriptown specializes in these brews, which feature a lower ABV than other craft beers, allowing for hours of drinking, conversation, and fun. If you’re looking for something a bit stronger, try Dmitri’s Revenge, a Russian Imperial Stout at 9.4 ABV.

Soaring Wings Vineyard & Brewing
17111 S. 138th St. (Springfield)
402-253-2479
soaringwingswine.com

This vineyard is more than just grapes. Soaring Wings offers nine specially brewed beers, ranging from a light, American-style lager to their hefty Imperial Stout, aged in wine barrels for six months and tipping the scales at 10.7 ABV. Be sure to enjoy the covered deck and beautiful vista of the Nebraska countryside while the weather permits.

Thunderhead Brewing Co.
13304 W. Center Road, No. 126
402-802-1600
thunderheadbrewing.com

From humble beginnings in Kearney, Nebraska, Thunderhead expanded eastward to the Big O in 2016. Enjoy beers with clever names like “Your Argument is Invalid” in their lovely indoor and outdoor spaces.

Upstream Brewing Co.
514 S. 11th St.
402-344-0200
upstreambrewing.com

Upstream Brewing Company has been open since 1996. They boast of being Omaha’s “original brewpub,” and they offer on-site brews and a rotating selection of cask-conditioned ales. While this brewery specializes in ales, they always take the time to age their popular Oktoberfest brew, which is malty and smooth.

Vis Major Brewing Co.
3501 Center St.
402-884-4082
vismajorbrewing.com

Vis Major, Latin for “act of God,” boasts of treating craft brewing as an art form, emphasizing intricate nuances of taste and complexity. Their Proverbial Pumpkin ale is the go-to for fall, sporting hints of cinnamon and other spices. Their tap room opened in between Field Club and Hanscom Park during 2017.

Zipline Brewing Co.
721 N. 14th St.
402-475-1001
ziplinebrewing.com

Born in Lincoln, this 5-year-old brewery opened a satellite Omaha location next door to Film Streams’ downtown location in 2017. Zipline emphasizes adventure, sustainability, and connecting with customers. Try something dark this fall with their Coconut Stout, or go the more traditional route with their Oktoberfest inspired Festbier, a crisp lager to match the weather.

This article was printed in the September/October 2017 edition of Omaha Magazine.