The pandemic hurt everyone. That’s not breaking news. Restaurants and breweries alike suffered, lost business and revenue, cut jobs, and some even closed, but, if it makes any sense, the pandemic was a unifying force. It made us all stronger. It strengthened our bonds as a community and showed us the true meaning of collaboration not competition. And just like the rules of a mosh pit, when one of us falls, you pick them back up.
With restaurants suffering the string of a shutdown and variously colored micro-cluster designations, they could use all the help they can get. Enter four local breweries, 42 North Brewing, Community Beer Works, Hamburg Brewing, and Resurgence Brewing, who have banded together to lend a hand with what they do best – beer. They joined forces to produce a special four-pack of beer to raise funds for the Western New York restaurant community.
Each brewery created a distinct style of beer to appeal to everyone’s palate. Proceeds from the sale of this beer will be donated to “Revive WNY Restaurants,” a not-for-profit created to support the local restaurant community.
“We are happy to be part of this effort to raise money for local restaurants. Not only are local restaurants our customers, they are a critical part of the overall entertainment scene. Without these creative hardworking entrepreneurs, Buffalo would not be the same,” Resurgence Owner Jeff Ware says.
The Revive WNY Restaurant not-for-profit was founded by Buffalo restaurateur, Paul Santora. Their mission is to provide financial support and marketing resources to local independent restaurants. Santora states, “Restaurants are not only important for our local economy, but they are a fabric of our local culture and community. We want to help the restaurant owners that have put their heart and soul into their business.”
Our restaurant community has been hit hard during the pandemic. In the last three months alone, the Buffalo Niagara region has lost over 6,000 jobs, with the majority coming from the restaurant industry. According to 42 North Founder John Cimperman, “Local bars and restaurants are the lifeblood of our business. Without their support, the local craft beer scene would not be where it is today. Now, it’s our turn to do everything we can to support them.”
The Revive WNY Restaurants mixed 4-packs features the following beers:
- 42 North Hazy IPA: Featuring tons of Citra, Cashmere and Chinook Hops with Pale Malt and oats for low bitterness, strong fruit notes, and a nice haziness.
- Hamburg Brewing Company Strawberry/Raspberry Sour: Made with strawberries, raspberries and milk sugar.
- Community Beer Works Oatmeal Stout: Brewed with heaps of oats and layered with roasted and chocolate malts that wrap your mouth in a smooth embrace
- Resurgence Brewing Company Blueberry Pancake Amber Lager: Blueberry pancake in a can. The sweetness from blueberries and maple syrup balances the bread and light toasted notes from the lager.
“We’re honored to work with a great group of people who insist on helping the third room space at this difficult time; every local brewer knows we wouldn’t be anywhere without it. What’s fun for us is that a mixed local brewer’s package has often been discussed behind the scenes, and we are thrilled our partners at Try It Distributing made it happen. We hope everyone enjoys the beer and understands what Revive is all about,” Russo adds.
Revive WNY Restaurants four-packs will be available at each brewery starting on February 5 and wherever great beer is sold afterwards. Participating restaurants will also have four-packs available for purchase.
“Bars and restaurants constitute ‘third spaces,’ which are crucial points of social and cultural interaction, and they have been devastated by this pandemic. CBW is grateful for their support over the years and is proud to work with our friends in the brewing industry to help these important third spaces get back on their feet again,” Ethan Cox, CBW president and co-founder, says.
In addition to the contribution of Try-It and the participating breweries, TLF Graphics of Rochester donated the production of the beer labels to support the cause. The beer labels highlight the local restaurant scene and feature prominent restaurant corridors throughout Buffalo.
For more information or to make a donation to Revive WNY Restaurants, see www.revivewnyrestaurants.org.
Brian Campbell is co-founder and Brand Manager of the Buffalo Beer League, and writes the weekly Buffalo Beer Buzz column. If you have beer news that should be included in the Beer Buzz, Brian can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, on Twitter (@buffbeerleague), Instagram (@buffalobeerleague), and Facebook (@thebuffalobeerleague).