Salt Lake City has become the unlikely location of a meticulously fashioned merger between a vibrant art scene and a competitive craft brewing community. Uinta Brewing has been long revered for its perfectly balanced selection of beers, but now it is tipping the scales with the continuation of its Crooked Line. “The Crooked Line is a blank piece of canvas to make some fun beers with fun names and [work with] fun local artists,” says Uinta president Will Hamill.
Jon Lee is an adrenaline junkie and self-described former “snow bum” who cut his teeth boarding fast in the Wasatch Range and the Rockies. As head brewer at the Utah Brewers Cooperative (which combines the talents of Wasatch and Squatters under one roof), Lee splits his time crafting award-winning beers and driving number 93—The Devastator—named after the popular Wasatch label brew.
On Friday, June 10, come out to The Urban Lounge to give your aural senses a swift thrashing on all accounts. Prep your ears for the blackened atmospherics of Moon of Delirium and the rolling, uncontainable stomp of IX Zealot. The auditory assault launches at 10 p.m. with Beyond This Flesh, and $5 gets you in on the action.
It was a windy afternoon in Austin, Texas during SXSW when I found myself sitting poolside at a swanky hotel with Cole Alexander and Ian Saint Pé of Black Lips in a cabana that was clearly marked as being reserved for someone else. “We like to come in and improvise. See, this was reserved,” Alexander says as he picks up the sign. “This was reserved for us.”
Drinking delicious, locally made beer has become a no-brainer. With so much to choose from, even here behind the Zion Curtain, the consumer’s cup literally runneth over in a marketplace full of options. However, the standard styles—pilsner, stout, amber ale and hefeweizen to name a few—are no longer enough. Increasingly, brewers all over the world are pushing the envelope of what is considered normal for beer, and the results are as tasty as they are groundbreaking.
For most of my adult life, I’ve been a beer guy. Growing up in Utah, I never really knew about the differences between “Utah beer” and “regular beer.” Let’s face it, if you’ve had any youthful experiences with beer in Utah, you’ve likely heard the terms “piss,” “water” and “near beer,” especially from those outside of the Zion Curtain. So why would anyone outside of Utah want to try any of this pissy, watery beer? The answer is simple: Utah beer is none of those things.