Founded in 1989, this modern brewery has taken Kansas City by storm, growing to be the largest specialty brewery in the entire Midwest. Boulevard Brewing Company now has distribution of their finest ales and lagers in 31 states and counting. With a mission “to produce fresh, flavorful beers using the finest traditional ingredients and the best of both old and new brewing techniques” setting this brewery apart from any other the Midwest has ever seen, there’s no doubt Boulevard will someday be a common household brand.
Offering exclusive limited-release holiday brews, Boulevard introduced a Chocolate Ale in 2011 just in time for Valentine’s Day, bringing in the attention of a much wider audience. As chocolate is a basic and universally loved treat, combining it with Kansas City’s beer has created quite an intense fervor for each release. This year’s new Chocolate Ale with Raspberry was created to put a spin on the previous version of Chocolate Ale. The balance of rich flavors, cacao nibs from the Dominican Republic, rich dark chocolate notes, and tart raspberries come together to form a beer to fall in love with.
As with other limited-release beers, it’s only available for a short period of time. However, Boulevard has upped the amount of Chocolate Ale with Raspberry brewed and packaged this year due to the overwhelming following and anticipation of loving customers, exceeding the amount of any other Smokestack Seasonal or limited-release beer they’ve ever brewed.
Boulevard Brewing Company’s other best sellers:
• Unfiltered Wheat: This American-style wheat beer is a refreshing ale with a natural, citrusy flavor. The cloudy appearance is distinctive and has not only become Boulevard’s most popular beer, it’s the best-selling craft beer in the entire Midwest. When garnished with a lemon, it’s no wonder Boulevard’s Unfiltered Wheat Beer won the Great American Beer Fest’s 2008 gold medal.
• Pale Ale: A well-balanced ale perfect for the entire year with a mellow caramel malt character, prominent citrusy hop flavor, and bitterness. Pairing with aged cheddars, chicken wings, fried foods, hamburgers, and steak make this beer a must have for bars and restaurants, as the smooth, fruity aspect of the beer adds the perfect amount of zest. This beer also pulled in a Great American Beer Fest gold medal in 2011, and it’s been customer favorite since its release.
• The Smokestack Series: These bold, complex ales include both traditional styles and daring experiments for consumers to explore. The Smokestack beers are completely one-of-a-kind. While some are hoppier and some have more of a yeast note, all “reveal the mysterious depth of wood aging.” There are six releases available year-round including: The Calling, Tell Tale Tart, Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale, The Sixth Glass, Long Strange Tripel, and Dark Truth Stout. Then, the aforementioned limited-releases and seasonal brands also fall under this category.
What are you waiting for? Head to Kansas City, Missouri now to tour the brewery and check out all that Boulevard Brewing Company has to offer in their tasting room. Cheers!
Written by: freelance writer, editor, and beer lover Brit Haines from Kansas City