Cowbell's first batch well received by over 1,000
BY DENNY SCOTT
Blyth Cowbell Brewing Company released its inaugural brew, the Absent Landlord, during a special sold-out launch ceremony at the Blyth Community Centre on Saturday night.
The company plans to build a destination brewhouse, restaurant and farm at the corner of Highway 4 and County Road 25 which will be not only a place to buy all brews, but also home to a farm where crops used in brewing will be harvested.
Cowbell Brewing Company welcomed 1,005 ticket holders (the census population of Blyth) to the event where its staff were introduced to the village for the first time since its initial announcement to the public, which it dubbed its Home Opener, at the Emergency Services Training Centre.
Vice-President Grant Sparling said the event hit all the checkpoints the executive team hoped for and then some.
“Saturday was incredible,” he said. “It was everything we wanted, hoped for and more. The reaction from everyone at the event and following it was fantastic.”
Sparling said there were fantastic reviews of the beer and of the company itself and felt the event was a great way to include the community in the launch of the inaugural brew.
“I’m not sure how many people came through the door, but we had 1,005 tickets and that was our target and we sold out so that was great news for us,” Sparling said.
The success of the brew itself was something that Sparling was particularly excited about, saying many people mentioned it had a broad appeal.
“That was exactly what we were going for with our first beer,” he said. “People who don’t normally drink them think craft beers are big on bitterness, aroma and hops, which we didn’t want for this first beer. We wanted to appeal to everyone. I think it’s a good mix of accessibility and craft beer.”
Sparling said the audience agreed with him, as he was told the Absent Landlord is flavourful but also approachable and drinkable.
The event also served as a stage for Sparling to announce how the company will develop from here.
“June 6 we will have the groundbreaking at the site,” he said, adding that the details were still being hammered out for that. “We’ll have product on the shelves before that, however.”
Sparling said that the Absent Landlord will be available at local LCBO stores by the end of the month.
“We’re starting to package now and getting it distributed in the area surrounding Blyth at the end of May,” he said. “We hope to be in 200 to 250 LCBO locations by the end of the summer.”
The Absent Landlord, named after Henry Blyth, who bought much of the town during its early days but had never actually visited the site, will be the first in a line of many beers called the Founders Series according to President Steven Sparling, who spoke at the event.
Sparling said that the beers would be named after colourful characters, from the area.
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