ABV is our weekly series that highlights a different beer from a local Pittsburgh brewery every week. Check out our past picks here.
This week marks 15 years of GOOD BEER flowing from the team at East End Brewing.
What started as Scott Smith’s one-man operation in 2004 has scaled up to become one of Pittsburgh’s most influential and recognizable names in craft beer.
December 10 – 15: East End Brewing’s week-long celebration
From December 10 through December 15, you can expect a number of festive happenings at East End Brewing to mark their #FIRST15. Head to the brewpub in Larimer for commemorative swag and merchandise, including some throwback goodies (featuring the old logo) for OG East End fans.
Got a home draft system? You can even snag one of these nifty East End tap handles this week for $15.
Thursday, Dec 12: Cake Cutting and ‘You Are Here’ Announcement
For folks looking to celebrate on East End’s ACTUAL birthday – aim to be at the brewpub by 7pm on Thursday, Dec 12. At that time, East End plans to do two things:
- Announce neighborhood #15 in the ‘You Are Here: Neighborhood‘ beer series
- Cut a celebratory birthday cake to mark 15 years of East End Brewing
Sunday, Dec 15: Crafts and Drafts Holiday Market
This Sunday is East End’s annual Crafts and Drafts holiday market. The local maker showcase is especially noteworthy because guests (and vendors) are actually set up in the brewing area of East End. It’s a lovely use of the back-of-house, beer production area where guests normally would not be permitted to hang out.
Three-Way Collaboration: Gratitude Barleywine x Maggie’s Farm Rum x Barmy Soda
Although East End specializes in craft beer, guests visiting during the anniversary week will be treated to something a bit more in the cocktail realm.
Three years ago, East End took a small batch of their in-house barleywine (Gratitude) and partnered up with Maggie’s Farm Rum, in the Strip District. They pumped a batch of Gratitude into an oak barrel from Maggie’s Farm to allow it to age into whiskey.
Next, East End’s in-house soft drink team (Barmy Soda Company) tinkered with this aged, barleywine-turned-whiskey and added ginger, lime and simple syrup to unveil Gratitude Whiskey.
Non-beer drinkers and cocktail fans: this is your chance. Gratitude Whiskey is truly a one-off, small batch party favor you can try this week.
ABV, volume XLV
East End’s #FIRST15 Celebration – the 15-way guest tap takeover
And now for the beer.
Folks familiar with East End Brewing are quick to point out that the brewpub is furnished with 15 beer taps behind the bar.
To honor Allegheny County’s first 15 beer producers, East End is relinquishing all 15 of its taps to the breweries who got it all started. The ultimate, chronological hat-tip.
That’s right – you can head to East End beginning Tuesday, December 10 and enjoy beer from the following breweries:
- Penn Brewery
- Church Brew Works
- Rock Bottom Brewery
- East End Brewing
- Strange Roots Experimental Ales (FKA Draai Laag)
- Red Star Kombucha
- Aurochs Brewery
- Costar Brewery
- Roundabout Brewery
- Hop Farm Brewery
- Hitchhiker Brewery
- The Brew Gentlemen
- Grist House Craft Brewery
- Spoonwood Brewing Company
Note: guests will NOT be able to purchase to-go growler fills of the guest beers. They are for on-site consumption only.
Also, note: brewery #4 on the list is, well…East End. That tap will feature the above mentioned Gratitude Whiskey, aged in a barrel from Maggie’s Farm Rum.
Also, also note: if you’re just craving a nice, familiar East End Brewing beer – all good. Cans and bottles per the usual beer lineup will be available for guests looking to get what they’re used to.
Visiting East End Brewing
First Time Visitor?
Parking: On-street parking is limited. Pull up along Julius St. Try to avoid parking in front of the electric transformer station. Avoid using the Sherwin-Williams lot on weekdays too. Pro Tip: if it’s packed, parking along Frankstown Ave is free too.
Food: Order food from the Larder of East End counter, located to the left of the bar inside the brewery.
Getting to East End Brewing
Bus: If you’re gonna bus it, catch the 86 or the 77 for a proximal stop.
Bike: If the weather is cooperative and you find yourself cycling through town, I highly recommend biking to East End. There’s plenty of bike parking near the front entryway (including a sweet bike lock area) and you’re guaranteed to make friends with others who have pedaled their way to the brewery.
Header Photo: Cory Morton