What’s brewing in Chicago….?


 Chicago was always a city of industry, and was also the home to a great many immigrants from the 19th century onwards, Many of these groups came from countries where the beverage of choice was beer.  With their arrival at first came small-scale brewing, but with the industrial ingenuity that makes this country great, this was followed by larger scale commercial breweries.  While not on par with the production in Milwaukee, Chicago was no slouch either, and many breweries proliferated in the time before Prohibition.  With the passage of the 18th Amendment, legal  brewing came to an end nationwide, and although Chicago became quite well known for its illegal contribution to the alcohol industry during the 1920’s, it brewing industry never quite recovered.

Fast forward 60 years, and the beer drinkers of Chicago wanted something distinctive and high quality, or in other words, a true Chicago product.  After being overshadowed by our little brothers to the north and south, Chicago is re-emerging as both a local and national player in the beer scene.  Vas Foremost is proud to participate in this process by providing as many of the burgeoning local breweries that we can.  We are a local store, and we stand behind the credo that you should support your community.  With that, a brief intro to some of the local breweries we proudly feature on our shelves (and in our coolers!):

The most prominent is, without a doubt, Goose Island (1800 North Clybourn).  The oldest of the current craft brewers in Chicago, Goose Island opened in Lincoln Park in 1988, and has continued to operate a brew pub both there and in Wrigleville to the current day.  While it has recently sold the majority ownership to InBev, Goose Island is sure to always remain a Chicago favorite, having cemented its reputation both locally and nationally with brews such as 312 and Honkers Ale.  In recent years they have branched out further to produce belgian-style ales such as Matilda and Pere Jacques, and their famous Bourbon County Stout.

 More recent than Goose Island, but rising in stature are breweries such as Half Acre (4257 North Lincoln Avenue), which is known for its Daisy Cutter and Gossamer Golden Ale, among others, and the Finch Beer Company (4565 North Elston Avenue) which is making its mark with many different beers, including its Golden Wing Blond and Cut-throat Pale Ale.

These are a few of the local options that we have available at Vas Foremost, and we look torwards making all  Chicago brews available. We are firmly committed to enhancing the local presence of our Chicago brewing neighbors, and to supporting the movement they have started.  As with anything, the movement starts at home, and we want to help put Chicago firmly back on the map of the brewing world!

I hope that everyone has a great weekend! As always, if you have any questions about anything I’ve written, or even general questions about anything else, please feel free to email me at george@vasforemost.com, tweet us: @vasforemost, or give us a call at (773) 278-9420.

Thanks again! See you all next week!

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