Staff photo / Alan Shaw
JDub's Brewing Co. at 1215 Mango Ave. in Sarasota is getting ready to open its doors this month, according to owner Jeremy Joerger. I got a look at the progress today. So much has changed since I last visited in November. Here brewmaster Tom Harris and Joerger stand in front of JDub's 15-barrel brewhouse.
Staff photo / Alan ShawPilot system
The smaller pilot brewing system JDub's will use to make test batches for its tasting room, which is visible through the windows.
Staff photo / Alan ShawThe cooler
Joerger stands in front of JDub's enormous walk-in cooler, where kegs will be stored before shipping. Note the forklift-size door at left.
Staff photo / Alan ShawTasting room
Joerger, Harris and artist Jack Quack (who designed the label for the brewery's flagship Up Top! IPA) hoist brews behind the tasting room's bar. When the tasting room opens later this month, Joerger says the hours will be 3-11 p.m. Thursday and Friday, and noon to 11 p.m. Saturdays.
Staff photo / Alan ShawTap handles
JDub's draft beers will be in bars and restaurants in March, Joerger says. Up Top! IPA will be their first beer. They have finalized the recipe after lots of testing and tastings. "I think it's one people will want now and will want in 10 years," Joerger said. Look for six-packs of JDub's cans in April, he said.
Staff photo / Alan ShawTasting room windows
Joerger always wanted the brewing equipment to be visible from the tasting room, and it is.
Staff photo / Alan ShawTVs and more
The tasting room has several TVs and a big screen in the back. Joerger says they will be open for every Baltimore Orioles home game during baseball spring training. The brewery is a just a few blocks west of Ed Smith Stadium.
Staff photo / Alan ShawAntique doors
You enter the tasting room through antique wooden doors.
Staff photo / Alan ShawStrong stout
This is Uncle Jethro's Mudwhata, a 10+ percent alcohol stout brewed with whiskey-infused oak chips. Joerger likes it so much he said he could see JDub's releasing it in 750-ml bottles. Brewmaster Harris said it was labor-intensive.
Staff photo / Alan ShawWheat ale
This is a test batch Belgian wheat beer called -- I swear -- Kill WHIT-ey! that's brewed, per style, with coriander and orange peel.
Staff photo / Alan ShawThe bar
Another angle on JDub's tasting room bar. While JDub's won't serve food, Joerger said local food trucks will be on site from 6 to 10 p.m. every day JDub's is open.
Sneak peek inside JDub's Brewing Co. in Sarasota
/ Friday, February 7, 2014