Callsign Brewing is getting ready to report for duty. Last week, brewer Steve Sirois signed a lease for a building at 1447 Gentry Street in North Kansas City. Remodeling begins in early May and while Callsign Brewing’s projected open date will depend on licensing, Sirois is “shooting for the end of October.”
The brewery’s name is related to a military identification system.
“Callsign refers to a name and number given to a crew for a mission,” explained Sirois. “The call signs differ from one base or operation to another. It’s just a way to identify the flight. Almost like airliners [use] United Flight 172.”
Call sign also ties the military career of Sirois with his new endeavor. Sirois, a master sergeant, has served for the last 27 years in the active duty Air Force, Air Force Reserves, and Air National Guard. Currently, he serves with the Missouri Air National Guard in Saint Joseph. The brewery’s offerings will also recognize veterans and members of the armed services.
“We name our beers after fallen aircraft to honor the men and women that gave the ultimate sacrifice to our country,” said Sirois. “We want to preserve the names of our fallen since they are the true heroes of our nation. We will cover all branches of service and also honor fallen police officers and firefighters.”
Callsign Brewing will be a seven-barrel brewery and taproom that seats 50 to 60 people. Sirois plans to brew a wide variety of ales, India Pale ales, browns, stouts, Irish reds, and Belgian blondes. In the first year, Sirois “will focus on getting our equipment dialed in,” with plans to add distribution in the Kansas City area in the future.
Sirois will be joined in the brewhouse by his son Steven Sirois, Jr. and Morris Loncon, who will both serve as part-time brewers. All three brewers at Callsign each have six years of homebrewing experience.
“We started out like everyone else brewing five gallons, and worked our way up to the 1.5 barrel, all-electric system, in my basement brewery,” said Sirois.
The West Bottoms is Set to Sparkle
Boulevard Brewing Company and Piney River Brewing, based in Bucyrus, Missouri, will produce a one-of-a-kind sparkling ale as a special release for the fourth annual Boulevardia. The craft beer and music street festival will be held Friday, June 16, and Saturday, June 17, in the historic Stockyards District in the West Bottoms.
Golden in color, Boulevardia Sparkling Ale’s aromas open with honey-like malt accented by subtle notes of spicy citrus from Galena hops. The ale is crisp with lively carbonation. Boulevardia Sparkling Ale will only be available on draft throughout the festival and at the Taps & Tastes experience.
“We came up with making a sparkling ale after being inspired by the history of the Stockyards District and its connection to agriculture and honest, hard work,” said Steven Pauwels, Boulevard brewmaster. “Our brewers and the crew from Piney River wanted to make a beer that spoke to the location of the festival while also addressing a desire to brew an easy-drinking, thirst-quenching beer appropriate for a summer, outdoor festival.”
Border Brewing Taps Trapdoor Tripel
Eric Martens, owner and head brewer of Border Brewing Company, shares details about Trapdoor Tripel, a new beer (9 percent ABV) that will be released on Wednesday, April 26, at Border Brewing Company (406 E. 18th Street).
“It’s our take on a Belgian tripel, fermented over six weeks using two different yeast strains,” said Martens.
Border’s assistant brewer Kelly Wing found a homebrewed bottle of a Belgian Tripel in his basement last year along with the recipe.
“The beer was three-years-old, but we decided to try it anyway. It was great!” Martens said. “We liked the name Trapdoor for the basement reference, as well as for the fact that it hides the ABV in a way that can certainly ‘trap’ you.’ We did our best to replicate the original recipe on the scale up, though there are a few differences.”
Trapdoor Tripel’s maltiness is offset by a crisp finish. “We used some Belgian candy sugar to boost the alcohol-by-volume,” said Martens. “The real purpose of the sugar addition is to lighten the body of the beer to give it that ’Champagne’ finish.”
To create its Tequila Barrel Lime Gose, Boulevard Brewing Company acquired a truckload of freshly emptied tequila barrels from various distilleries. The brewery aged current beers in the barrels to assess the character the barrels would provide. Next, the brewing team decided to brew a German-style gose infused with lime peel. Traditionally, gose is a top-fermented German style with a characteristic lemony sourness and salty finish.
According to Ambassador Brewer Jeremy Danner, Boulevard’s Tequila Barrel Lime Gose presents “aromas of oak, vanilla and caramelized banana with bright lime character” followed by “subtle tequila notes and coconut.” Flavor-wise, acidity is accented by “hints of coriander and sea salt” with notes of citrus, malt sweetness, and a “touch of heat provided by tequila barrel-aging.”
— Pete Dulin writes about food trends for Flatland and is the author of the “KC Ale Trail.” Follow @FlatlandKC and #TapList on Twitter for more food news and trends.