When Matthew Wolf, one of the owners of Iowa Brewing Company in Cedar Rapids, saw the news about the deadly Camp Fire that burned the town of Paradise, California, he thought about his college-aged children’s friends, many of whom are from California, including the areas of the state that burned.
So when the brewery had a chance to help raise funds for the impacted communities, he didn’t hesitate. Iowa Brewing Company joined more than 1,000 breweries across the country on Tuesday to brew a beer dedicated to the cause.
One hundred percent of sales of Resilience Butte County Proud IPA will go to the Camp Fire Relief Fund.
The Camp Fire, which so far has left 88 dead, with 158 still unaccounted for, scorched 240 square miles over 17 days. It was contained Sunday.
The relief fund, established by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., will be distributed to organizations dedicated to rebuilding and supporting communities affected by the fire.
When Sierra Nevada put out a call for other breweries to get involved, the responses was immediate.
“We’re excited to do it. We like to get involved with local charities, but as part of the craft brewing industry, which is pretty tight knit, this is an opportunity to be part of something bigger,” Wolf said. “It’s something we kind of jumped on ... It’s one of those things you don’t have to think about much.”
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Participating breweries all used the same recipe to produce the beer, which most will release in coming weeks.
SingleSpeed Brewing in Waterloo pulled together seven Eastern Iowa breweries for a collaboration brew of the IPA Tuesday. Brewers from Lion Bridge Brewing Company in Cedar Rapids, Backpocket Brewing in Coralville, Big Grove Brewery in Iowa City, Jefferson County Ciderworks in Fairfield, Dimensional Brewing in Dubuque and Pulpit Rock Brewing Co. in Decorah worked together at SingleSpeed on Tuesday. They split the costs between them and will each distribute a portion of the beer in their taprooms.
Lion Bridge will receive five half barrel kegs — about 600 pints of beer — and will tap them Dec. 22.
“The craft beer world and brewing community is this great thing. There is a sense of collaboration, of helping each other out when we need help,” Lion Bridge co-owner Quinton McClain said.
He said it was gratifying to see that sense of community put to use in response to the wildfire.
“You kind of feel like, here in the middle of the country, you’re not able to do a whole lot, but then you can help by doing what you do, which is to make beer,” he said.
J. Wilson, head of the Iowa Brewers Guild, said he knows of 29 breweries across Iowa that have participated.
“That’s basically thirty percent of the breweries in the state of Iowa,” he said. “It feels great. It is one of those rare opportunities where you have a peculiar skill and you can help people in a way you never would have realized.”
What breweries are participating?
The 29 Iowa breweries the Iowa Brewers Guild has listed as participating in the Camp Fire Relief Fund brew. One hundred percent of sales of Resilience Butte County Proud IPA will be donated to the fund. Other breweries not on this list may also be participating. Look for the release of the beer at taprooms around the state in mid-December.
Brightside Aleworks, Altoona
Millstream Brewing Company, Amana
River Ridge Brewing, Bellevue
Reclaimed Rails Brewing Company, Bondurant
Boone Valley Brewing Co., Boone
Second State Brewing Co., Cedar Falls
Iowa Brewing Company, Cedar Rapids
Lion Bridge Brewing Company, Cedar Rapids
Backpocket Brewing, Coralville
Great River Brewery, Davenport
Pulpit Rock Brewing Co., Decorah
Toppling Goliath Brewery, Decorah
Confluence Brewing Company, Des Moines
Court Avenue Restaurant and Brewery, Des Moines
Exile Brewing Company, Des Moines
515 Brewing Company, Des Moines
Dimensional Brewing, Dubuque
Jubeck New World Brewing, Dubuque
Jefferson County Ciderworks, Fairfield
Big Grove Brewery, Iowa City and Solon
Peace Tree Brewing Co., Knoxville
Contrary Brewing Co., Muscatine
Worth Brewing Company, Northwood
Limestone Brewers, Osage
NoCoast Beer Co., Oskaloosa
Fenders Brewing, Polk City
Jackson Street Brewing, Sioux City
Fox Brewing, West Des Moines
SingleSpeed Brewing, Waterloo and Cedar Falls
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