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The Official Blog of Cape May Brewing Company

Tis The Season For Giving

Still looking for a way to get on Santa’s good list?

For the third year in a row, we’re hosting a collection for the Community FoodBank of New Jersey. This non-profit feeds more than one million people per year, and provides food assistance to over 250 charities throughout Cape May, Cumberland and Atlantic Counties.

“Any legitimate place providing food to the underprivileged in these areas is likely getting the bulk of their donations through us,” says Executive Director Evelyn Benton. “We’re thrilled when organizations like the brewery think outside of themselves to contribute.”

CFBNJFrom now through December 14, non-perishable food items will be accepted at the tasting room. Canned fish and meat, canned or boxed meals, shelf-stable milk, peanut butter, and canned fruits and vegetables are especially welcome. No glass, cellophane, soda, bottled water or baby food, please.

For every four items you donate, you’ll receive one dollar off of any 64-ounce growler fill or any six-pack to go. Because of your generosity, we contributed 146 pounds of food to the cause last year, and we’d really love to top this number in 2015.

“We’re in a position of high visibility,” says our prez, Ryan Krill. “It’s not all about great beer; it’s about taking our momentum and putting it to use for the public good.”

Don’t forget – you also have the option of donating a dollar to play the Hook and Ring Toss game set up in our tasting room. All proceeds will be gifted to the FoodBank.

Remember: beer tastes better after a good deed.

The Flights Take Off

Up until this point, when you’ve ordered a tasting – four, four-ounce pours – at our tasting room, we’ve given you four wooden tokens which you then exchange – one at a time — for beer at the bar. This can mean waiting in line four separate times. But now, we’re reinventing the system, and it’s working out pretty great.

“People are going crazy for the new way,” says Tasting Room Manager Heather Mangano.

Allow CMBC Brewtender Courtney Gingrich to give you the deets here, then come check it out for yourself…



Fork(Lift) It Over

At a brewery, there are several things the OSHA acronym could stand for, like: Outrageously Satisfying Hop Aroma. Or: Oh, Shit – Hefeweizen Allergy!

But this week, we’re talking about the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the federal agency tasked with regulating workplace safety. On Monday, Krishna Jagannathan — who works for OSHA Consultation with the NJ Department of Labor — stopped by our place to assist in-house Safety Manager Jake Smith in executing a forklift safety presentation.

“This was all part of a voluntary audit Cape May Brewing Company signed up for,” Krishna explains. “They’re the only craft brewery in New Jersey to engage this consultation service. And if I were to venture a guess, most small businesses do not have formal forklift training.”

This can be problematic, considering how deceptively dangerous forklift operation can be.

“Most people assume it’s similar to driving a car, but this is not at all the case,” Krishna says. “On a forklift, which tends to weigh more than your average passenger vehicle, the steering wheel is in the back, so with every move you make, your backend will swing out. And since loads are carried in front, view is obstructed. Unlike in a car, which will hit something and stop, forklifts have these two sharp things in front that will continue going forward and through… through a foot, an ankle, a human, a wall, or a palette of product.”

Proof that missteps can be devastating? Forklifts are the source of one percent of industrial accidents, but the injuries sustained from these accidents constitute over 10 percent of all physical injuries in the workplace.

To make sure our guys are up to snuff, they underwent a verbal and video presentation, as well as written and driving tests. The production team passed with flying colors, and then enjoyed a shift drink. Because after a long day of talking tip-over rates and load balance, a cool glass of City to Shore Double IPA is a safe (heh) bet.


For any breweries (or other businesses) interested in securing Krishna for their own forklift training, he can be reached at [email protected]

November Stout

Few things are certain. Among them: Death. Taxes. And pumpkin-flavored brews taking over liquor store shelves come October. But how long does the pumpkin madness last? According to a new report from the Brewers Association, not as long as you might think. In fact, says the BA’s Chief Economist Bart Watson, “November 1 marks a sharp shift in beer lover interest.” Pumpkin beers fall out of favor, experiencing a drop in popularity second only to the fall from grace experienced by Christmas-themed beers after December 25.

But between gourd-graced labels and bottles rife with reindeer, what is there? In other words, who’s the hero of November beer?

Based on a cross-section of data, including your Google searches, the answer is… many different brews. We’re talking Scottish ales, amber lagers, specialty releases and more. But one category that stands out among the crowd is — drum roll, please — stout.

“Interest starts building as early as August,” Bart writes, “but there’s a noticeable jump come November 1… The jump between October and November is the largest of the year.”

Well good news, gang… we’re on trend! Our Cape May Stout is coming back on tap in the not-so-distant future (watch this space). An “even-keeled” beer, according to Chief Operating Officer Chris “Hank” Henke, the brew is similar to a ‘session stout’ — low in alcohol, high in roasty-toasty goodness.

We’ll be ready to pour you a tasting… all November long. In the meantime, here’s the stats:


Graphs courtesy of Brewers Association
Graphs courtesy of Brewers Association

Credit: Brewers Association


A Hairy Award

Cape May Brew Co sales rep Justin Vitti says there are three things you can expect at a craft brewery: good beer, sarcasm, and facial hair. That last one is especially applicable at CMBC during No Shave November. Last year at this time, our male team members joined guys across the globe in raising awareness for men’s health issues by proudly sporting beards and ‘staches for all the world (or at least, all the tasting room) to see. You can still donate to their page HERE.

Photo credit: The Gothamist
Photo credit: The Gothamist

Some of our guys are still sporting this facial hair proudly, perhaps none more so than Justin,  who took first place last Saturday in the Hungarian Mustache category at the 2015 US National Beard and Mustache Championships held at King’s Theater in Brooklyn. He won’t tell us how many people he was up against, just that “it wasn’t an easy win,” so you’ll have to draw your own conclusions.

Reported the New York Daily News: “The smell of draft beer lingered in the air — along with pungent whiffs of mustache wax — as a shaggy set of deadly serious competitors sized each other up…”

One of these competitors styled his beard into the Nike swoosh (he called it the intersection of “art and copyright infringement”). Another turned his beard into a birdcage where his head =’ed the bird. But Justin was the only one dressed as Teddy Roosevelt. Because when you’ve got facial hair game this strong, you do what you want.

If you’d like to contribute to the cause — helping stamp out men’s cancers, that is, not supporting eccentric facial hair competitions — make a donation here.

The Cape May Brew Co team thanks you.


Brew Update

Big news this week, guys. We’ve got two beers being released, and something special maturing:


Our South Jersey Secession Session Scottish Ale — affectionately referred to as SOJO — is on tap as of Wednesday, November 4. The 4.7% brew has all the malty goodness you’ve come to expect from a Scottish beer… let’s just say hops are not as readily available in the Highlands as, say, haggis. Don’t blame us if, after a few sips, you’re left jonesing for Mel Gibson shouting “Freedom” in a kilt.

King Porter Stomp

This is our rich and chocolaty American Porter that’s out on November 6 in honor of The Exit Zero International Jazz Fest. We told you all about it here.  What we didn’t tell you? Some time in the not-so-distant future, it will be available on nitro in our tasting room. This means it’s been carbonated with mostly nitrogen rather than carbon dioxide, resulting in smaller bubbles, a creamier mouthfeel, and a fluffy white head. In other words, it’s worth getting jazzed about.

Dubbel Marker

Remember this brew? It was made in the Trappist tradition, utilizing Belgian yeast strains for a finished product that was lush and fruity. Well, this time around, we’re not distributing it. Instead, we’re saving a portion of the batch for release next month in our tasting room so that Dubbel Marker fans can get their fill, and then we’re barreling the majority off. The end result will be a sour beer.

“The Dubbel Marker is big and malty with lots of sugars leftover after fermentation for organisms to continue munching on in the barrels,” says CMBC’s Chief Operating Officer Chris “Hank” Henke. “Also, the Belgian yeast strain we use lends a lot of esters that will give off interesting flavors during this second fermentation.”

As for how long the beer will be here? Your guess is as good as ours.

“It could be up to a year,” Chris says. “But we don’t really know. That’s what makes the process exciting.”

We’ll keep you posted on the progress — stay tuned.


Big Things For The CMBC Crew…

Our team is always brewing big beers. But recently, we’ve have some big personal events on tap, too. Here’s your proof that a brewery really IS a microcosm of life…


It was 2010 when Bob Krill — aka Mop Man — announced to his colleagues after a 40-year career in big pharmaceuticals that he’d be mop manopening a brewery with his son and his son’s college roommate. Although some people called him nuts, Bob’s never looked back.

“It’s a journey and we’re only at the beginning,” he says. “We’re not in it to become Budweiser, only to put a notch in Jersey’s beer belt, and I’m not just a daytripper… this is a long-term deal. It’s hard work, but we’re having fun, too. And if we can help people out along the way by creating some jobs, that’s very cool. It’s funny… when you tell people you’re involved with clinical trials, they tune you right out. Tell them you brew beer, and man, they’re all ears.”

November 1 marked Bob’s 70th birthday. He requested a steak “the size of a human head” (we call that a “Bobism”), so that’s exactly what he got. Family and friends — including Bob’s dog Brewster — celebrated with a tasty dinner. And, of course, beer. Lots of beer.


Sales rep Justin Vitti takes quite a bit of gentle ribbing in our weekly newsletter, but only because he’s such a good sport. We couldn’t bejustin vitti happier for him and girlfriend Mariel Kauffman on their recent engagement.

Justin had the rock for six months, but he waited until the perfect, organic moment to pop the question: when Mariel was upset over a favorite piece of jewelry that needed repair. “Maybe we could just replace it,” Justin told her, ever so suavely whipping out a diamond.

Now, it’s on to seating arrangements and cake tastings. So far, only one thing about the ceremony has been set in stone: there will be beer. Lots of beer.


nuptialMop Man and his son, CMBC Prez Ryan Krill, will be at Hotel Monaco in Philadelphia this weekend for the wedding of their daughter/sister, Lauren Krill. She’s getting hitched to Alex Ruiz, whom she met while working for The Vanguard Group in Arizona.

At the reception, our Coastal Evacuation beer will be on tap, and our Devil’s Reach will be served in bottles with wax caps hand-dipped by Mop Map and CMBC’s Courtney Rosenberg. We’ve cleverly disguised the latter brew via custom labels (created in-house) as “Nuptiale.”

The CMBC team wishes the lovebirds an epic marriage full of laughter, adventure, and beer. Lots of beer.


Brian Hink — Taurus, Kerouak fan, affable lover of pizza — has been promoted from CMBC Brewer to CMBC’s Head Brewer. What does this For Dientail? Managing the entire production team; developing standard operating procedures for the brewhouse, cellar and packaging processes; and liasing with our human resources department. Hey, with an ever-increasing employee count, we’ve got a lot of humans to resource!

Also on the promotion front… Zach Pashley, a six-year veteran of the Coast Guard and a tasting room/events associate for CMBC, has been named Assistant Tasting Room Manager.

“I’m really looking forward to the increased responsibility,” he says. “And for the opportunity to be one of the faces of a company I truly believe in.”

Nice work, boys. Now have yourselves a beer. Or lots of beer.

One-Off Wednesday Returns!

At CMBC, we’ve got an affinity for envelope-pushing. One way to experiment while expanding our offerings? Our One-Off Wednesday series, for which we infuse an existing beer with something offbeat every hump day.

In the summer, our brewers are too out-of-their minds busy keeping up with demand to do this.  But this time of year, they’ve got a moment — just a moment — to play around with some fun ideas.

On tap beginning November 4 — and staying on tap only until it runs out — is our Honey Porter infused with chai tea. This beer already has a star ingredient — 90 pounds of local honey in every 15-barrel batch — which has earned it a coveted Jersey-fresh designation. But the chai will give it that little kick of spice so perfect for November. Love it or hate it… there’s only one way to find out.

Then, on deck for next week, we’re taking I Know What You Did Last Shandy — the beer that tastes like pumpkin pie thanks to the addition of cinnamon, cloves and brown sugar — and adding rootbeer to the mix. Or, at least, the minty herb called wintergreen that gives our homemade root beer its distinctive flavor.

Got any ideas for future one-offs? Be sure to share them with your tasting room associates over your next tasting. We’ll see you at our place.


Election Time

Right now, there are several brewery-related bills before the New Jersey State Assembly, many of which would allow for greater job creation within the industry.

“And while we have no guarantees on anything happening with any of them, we have reason to believe they’re in play,” says Eric Orlando, VP of the Kaufman Zita Group which handles lobbying for the Garden State Craft Brewers Guild.

With a super close and contentious Assembly election taking place November 3 – for which candidates have been tossing some serious shade, accusing one another of tax evasion and gutter politics — brewers have been wondering: what does this election mean for our bills?

On the one hand, not much. Beer is a bipartisan issue, no matter who is in office. On the other hand, our current assembly leaders (especially those in our own District One) are great supporters of the Garden State Craft Brewers Guild, and they’re also well-informed. So if they’re replaced, it wouldn’t necessarily mean the end of the bills these guys have sponsored and supported, but it could delay the movement of these bills, since freshmen legislatures need to go through the education process.

Before you hit the polls, check out what our incumbents have done about beer so far…

(And if you need a refresher on how a bill becomes a law, see here.)


The Republican Incumbent: Assemblyman Sam Fiocchi (Running on a ticket with Republican Challenger Jim Sauro*)

–Sponsored bill AJR-72, which would designate the last week of September “New Jersey Beer, Wine and Spirits Week,” a time for celebrating – and bringing exposure to — these industries and the jobs they create within our community. The bill is still alive… but it hasn’t seen any movement since June of 2014, when it was assigned to the Tourism, Arts and Gaming Committee for discussion.

–Serves on the Regulatory Oversight Committee (along with Chris Brown, who’s currently up for reelection in District Two), where two brewery-related bills are up for discussion. One would allow patrons of Jersey tasting rooms to bring in outside food. The other would allow brewpubs to self-distribute a small amount of their product. (Both have been co-sponsored by Assemblyman Craig Coughlin, currently up for reelection in District 19).

–Met with CMBC President Ryan Krill and Jersey’s Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno last June, in order to talk about economic sustainability and hear how small brewers contribute.

–Honored CMBC with a resolution at the ribbon cutting ceremony for our expanded operation last May.

The Democratic Incumbent: Assemblyman Bob Andrzejczak (Running on a ticket with Democratic Challenger Bruce Land*)

–Is Chairman of the Assembly Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee, where he is a friend of the Garden State Craft Brewers Guild. Should he not be reelected, another democrat would take over this position, although it’s anyone’s guess who this could be. There are three brewery-related bills currently before this committee:

  • One would allow a brewery to buy a cider and mead-producing license for $938, and to make up to 25,000 barrels of the stuff per year. (Was cosponsored by Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt, currently up for reelection in District 6).
  • One would allow breweries to distill spirits in their existing facilities. (Was sponsored by Assemblyman Whip Wilson, not currently up for reelection in District 5).
  • One would allow for the sale of craft beer at Jersey farm markets (Was co-sponsored by Assemblyman Craig Coughlin, currently up for reelection in District 19).

–Co-sponsored bill AJR-109, which would designate the third weekend in October “Shuck, Slip, and Slurp” weekend, to promote the state’s oyster, beer and wine industries. The bill was passed in the Assembly, before being sent to a Senate Committee for discussion in June.

— Honored CMBC with a resolution at the ribbon cutting ceremony for our expanded operation last May.

**Remember, just because politicians are running on a ticket together doesn’t mean they’re not competing with one another. Voters can mix and match if they so choose. They’re are four Assembly seats available, and four contenders in the race. May the best men win.

Fill In The Blank With: Assistant Tap Room Manager Dan Petela

He’s a local guy who’s been a member of the CMBC team for two years. And he’s so amicable, he doesn’t even have any pet peeves… except maybe for an empty glass. Introducing: Dan “The Man” Petela…

Dan (left) with CMBC's Jim Zolna last Halloween.
Dan (left) being goofy with CMBC’s Jim Zolna last Halloween.

My favorite non CMBC craft beer is:  I don’t really have an all-time favorite beer. I like trying beers I haven’t had before.

My favorite CMBC brew is: City To Shore.

The superpower I would you like to have is: Teleportation.

My biggest fear is: Cenosillicaphobia: The fear of having an empty glass.

My favorite band/musician is: Rush.

The most famous person I’ve ever met was: Matt Ryan.

My karaoke song is: Depends, usually a Rush song. If it’s a duet, then Don’t Go Breaking My Heart.

The sports team I root for is: Sports? None.

If I could splurge on one must-have item, it would it be:  A circa 1974 Rickenbacker 4001 Electric Bass.

 My favorite hobby is: Homebrewing.

If I were an animal, I would be a: Frog.

The thing that drew me to CMBC was: The beer.

The last time I laughed until I cried was: Never.

My greatest adventure was: Getting engaged.

The dorkiest thing about me is: Everything.

My favorite slasher movie is: I like The Walking Dead. Does that count?

Something no one knows about me is: I once ran a 5k in 18:05.

Craft beer is inspiring because: The possibilities are endless.

My favorite word is: At this point in this interview, probably “um.”

The job I’d give up CMBC for is: There isn’t one.

If I could eat only one thing for the rest of my life, it would be: Peanut butter pie…

I love people who: Are down to earth and honest.

The musician I’m embarrassed to admit I like is: Taylor Swift. Shake it Off is my jam.

The best pickup line I’ve ever heard is: “Is your father an alien? Because you’re from out of this world…”

The worst pickup line I’ve ever used is: I’ve never really used one. I wasn’t good with the ladies.

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