Historians, take note—2013 could be the year everything changes for Nevada’s craft beer industry. And it all started with an extra pale ale.
Pyrite Pale Ale, to be precise. It’s a collaboration between six of Nevada’s breweries—Pints in Laughlin, Big Dog’s, Chicago Brewing Company, Joseph James, Tenaya Creek and Triple 7—and representatives from each gathered at Joseph James Brewing Company in Henderson last week to begin the brewing process. The beer will debut at the Great Vegas Festival of Beer on April 27, after which it will be available on tap at selected brewpubs.
It’s a sign of things to come from the Nevada Craft Brewers Association, founded six months ago and already up to nine active members, with the ultimate goal of including all 17 of Nevada’s breweries. “I think it’s the start of something bigger,” says Robert Snyder, CEO of Big Dog’s Brewing Company and treasurer of the association, referring not only to future collaboration beers (the goal is to produce two or three a year) but to what the association represents—a sharing of ideas and resources among its members.
Joseph James’ Matt Lisowski stresses the importance of the group for its members. “We need an association of brewers, by brewers, for brewers needs.”
David Pascual, head brewer for Chicago, which provided the hops for Pyrite, says, “People think we have all this competition going on between us, but look around—this is the kind of community where we just help each other out.”