Arkansas Craft Beer Week ushers in several new beers across the region

Core’s latest hazy IPA is called Off the Juice / Courtesy photo

The second annual Arkansas Craft Beer Week has arrived. According to a press release from the Arkansas Brewers Guild, the festivities will run March 1-7, but will be low-key compared to last year.

“While it will not be possible to hold large scale events, the ABG and its partners believe it is more important than ever to move forward with ACBW to come together as an industry to spread some cheer, promote our breweries’ impact, and continue to build ACBW into an anticipated and celebrated week of Arkansas craft beer,” the statement reads.

The coronavirus has had a dampening effect on beer events over the past year, but Arkansas beer drinkers haven’t stopped drinking beer, and new breweries continue to open. (And reopen. See the section on Apple Blossom Brewing Co.’s new brewer below.)

The unofficial count—which includes a couple of breweries-in-planning—puts the number of Arkansas breweries at 48. Ten years ago, there were only six in the state.

The Brewers Association estimates the economic impact of the Arkansas beer industry to be well over $500 million at this point. This number is sure to grow as the industry continues to expand.

Ivory Bill is located at 516 E Main Street in Siloam Springs / Courtesy photo

Although coordinated events aren’t in the cards for Arkansas Craft Beer Week, there are several new beer releases to draw people to local breweries.

Bentonville Brewing Co. introduced an Irish red ale called Red Headed Stranger last week. The brewery also teased an upcoming release named Spring Wrecker IPA.

Ozark Beer Co. rolled out the latest edition of its popular Our Hazy Distant Youth series. Sunday Pirates is a 6.7% ABV hazy IPA that features a hop known as Vic Secret.

Speaking of hazy IPAs, on Friday Core Brewing & Distilling Co. dropped its latest hazy in the taproom. Off the Juice clocks in at 7.5% ABV and 38 IBUs, and was double dry-hopped with Motueka and El Dorado hops.

Natural State Beer Co. and Gotahold Brewing collaborated on a Berliner Weiss / Courtesy photo

Over in Siloam Springs, Ivory Bill Brewing Co. unveiled Extra Extra! Batch 16, which is a Czech-style black IPA.

Fossil Cove Brewing Co. launched Blackberry Cream in the taproom this past weekend. It was brewed with blackberry puree and lactose sugar. Cans will start hitting the shelves at local beer stores this week.

Columbus House Brewery & Taproom released another round of Regnat Populus. This sour beer was made with pomegranate puree and is extra tart.

And finally, Natural State Beer Co. and Gotahold Brewing joined forces to brew a Berliner Weiss to celebrate Arkansas Craft Beer Week. Seven barrels of the low-alcohol, high-acidity ale were brewed in mid-February, and will be released in the breweries’ taprooms in Rogers and Eureka Springs on Thursday, March 4.

That’s just a small sample of what can be found in Northwest Arkansas during Arkansas Craft Beer Week. There is undoubtedly more fresh beer to be found throughout the rest of the state, so be sure to visit your local brewery and take part in the festivities.