Following the successful year-round release of Florida Man Double IPA, a beer brewed in honor of Florida’s addlepated superhero, Cigar City Brewing has announced the upcoming releases of five limited edition barrel-aged beers to celebrate five “unsung heroes of brewing.” One extremely limited beer named in honor of a different longtime CCB employee will be released daily at the Cigar City Brewing Taproom on Spruce St. beginning March 9, 2020, and culminating in the final release that coincides with the brewery’s annual Hunahpu’s Day Festival on March 13th. These beers have each seen extensive aging in various wooden barrels, including bourbon, apple brandy, and cherry brandy, and will not be available outside of the Cigar City Brewing Taproom.
Five of Cigar City Brewing’s longest tenured and most valued employees representing various departments of the brewery’s operations have served as inspiration for these limited Taproom releases. Brewer Brady Eaglin, a nine-year veteran of CCB, shares his name with a Bourbon Barrel-aged Barleywine-style Ale, while Lead Compliance Coordinator Alex Espinosa’s eight years at the brewery are represented with a Bourbon Barrel-aged Imperial Stout with Coffee, Hazelnut, Maple, and Vanilla Beans. Ian Schmidt and his eight years at CCB are honored with a Bourbon Barrel-aged Sweet Stout with Vanilla Beans, and longtime bartender Mike LaDuke’s Double Apple Brandy Barrel-aged Barleywine-style Ale with Cinnamon honors his tenure. Finally, Cigar City Brewing’s welder, fabricator, and production visionary Jay “The Welder” Lesher’s Apple Brandy and Cherry Brandy Barrel-aged Imperial Porter with Vanilla and Almonds rounds out this ambitious and reverential lineup of barrel-aged creations.
“While we’ve highlighted ‘the world’s worst superhero’ with Florida Man Double IPA, our team felt it was important to also acknowledge the Florida residents who are real heroes to the craft beer scene in the Sunshine State,” said Neil Callaghan, Brand Manager for Cigar City Brewing. “Without years of effort and expertise of Brady, Jay, Ian, Alex, and Mike, our brewery and the Tampa Bay beer community would look much different than it does today. We’re thrilled to use this opportunity to shine a spotlight on a few of the people who have helped build Cigar City Brewing into a dynamic, exciting brand,” he said.
The celebration of CCB’s staff and barrel-aged beers will begin on Monday, March 9 with the release of Brady Eaglin’s Bourbon Barrel-aged Barleywine-style Ale and continue with a new release each day until Friday, March 13. Cigar City Brewing’s newly reopened and redesigned Taproom on Tampa’s Spruce Street will be celebrating throughout the week with activations celebrating unsung heroes inside and outside the brewery. Each day’s honorees will also be on hand to autograph bottles of their beer and tell stories of their longtime service at CCB. Fewer than 30 cases of each beer will be available beginning at 11 a.m. on each day, and each guest will be limited to a fixed number of bottles to purchase.