Chicago breweries continue to attract our interest. The latest, BrickStone Restaurant & Brewery, is a suburban Chicago small town brewery that debuted in 2006 as a tiny, 5-barrel (bbl) brewing system. Now, the Chicago brewery has just took gold at the Beverage Testing Institute’s 2015 World Beer Championships as it sets to debut a new fully automated 50-bbl brewhouse and tasting room this spring.
BrickStone’s Dark Secret Russian Imperial Stout secured a gold medal in the Stout, Porters, & Strong Ales category, drawing a rating of 92 (exceptional) for its “dense aromas and flavors of dark roasted coffee beans, burnt sugar and nuts, caramel cream, and honeycomb with light oak.” Each year, BrickStone Restaurant & Brewery releases its Dark Secret on Black Friday. This year’s variance was aged in Dark Matter El Rosaro coffee beans which were barrel-aged then roasted to a medium dark and blended with Giant Step dark roast.
“We’re very proud of this brew,” said Brickstone BrewMaster Tommy Vasilakis. “We are extremely fortunate to have collaborated with Dark Matter and their fun and talented team. We knew from the first sip of coffee that we just had to work with them.”
The World Beer Championships are considered one of the major beer judging events throughout the world. BrickStone was also named “Best Brewery” at the 2014 American Beer Classic and has secured gold medals for its BrickStone APA and Belgo-APA. BrickStone’s new fully-automated brewhouse will allow for the production of 9,000-12,000 kegs of award-winning craft beers each year and be distributed throughout Illinois in both kegs and cans.