There is an interesting revitalization coming along in downtown Fort Lauderdale. If you’re familiar with the stretch along Broward Blvd., the southern half is home to a vibrant nightlife community, the Museum of Science and Discovery, and the Broward Center for the Performing Arts.
The north side, however, isn’t necessarily the best of neighborhoods at this time. It’s coming along, though, and there are a lot of new businesses that understand the time it takes to build up a vibrant and thriving district that will attract more people to the area.
Sistrunk is doing that right now, and eventually it will make it down to that area of Broward. There are some businesses going in that recognize this and have started their opening, such as the brand new Orchestrated Minds Brewing.
They are finally open, carving out a nice little space for themselves within visual range of Broward Blvd., but just off of the main drag. The husband-and-wife team that own it, brewer and massively jacked weightlifter Davy and his amazing and understanding wife Jaime, both still have their day jobs as software programmer and lawyer, respectively. But Davy has been brewing for years now, and has connected with a lot of the big players in the Fort Lauderdale brewing scene, such as Three Sons and Laser Wolf.
They were able to finally pull some money together and open up a brewery that is quickly becoming a darling of the region’s craft beer scene. On a visit, myself and Florida Beer Podcast Field Producer Steve were able to sit down and chat with him and understand a little bit of his background.
While the name of the brewery May hearken to the Performing Arts Center across the street, Davy actually takes inspiration from his computer programming past. He may not necessarily be good at any one particular job, but he found himself very adept at being the conductor and orchestrating many people to come together to deliver a quality finished product, hence the name.
Creating a quality finished product is something he definitely excels at. We were able to try a few of his beers on our trip, but not too many as he went through several kegs during a chaotic opening weekend that proved to be far more popular than he could have ever imagined:
Auckland to Boise (IPA, 6.1% ABV, 48 IBU) – if there aren’t New Zealand hops in this beer, it sure as heck feels like it. It’s got such a wonderfully light fruity feel to it. Not citrus in the way most IPAs tend to overblast their are alpha acids, but in a very soft, mellow, white grape feel. Reading and writing about this beer, I am honestly shocked the IBUs are as high as they are. It was incredibly mellow and one of the most enjoyable sessionable beers I have had in this category in a long time.
Touch of the Season (Blonde Ale, 5.3% ABV, 24 IBU) – Yes, it is time for the winter holidays, which is a bit of a joke in South Florida. But this beer is his homage to that, with just a nice light touch of cinnamon and other holiday spices that take a very simple and true to style blonde ale and give it an interesting twist to make it special and festive, but still simple to drink on a hot Florida day.
Whippin That Work (NEIPA, 7% ABV, 61 IBU) – This was an original recipe of something that he is probably going to be changing, and if he’s reading this I’m going to very strongly implore him not to. There were a lot of wildly varying hops in this beer, which gave the big dankness very interesting notes of bitter herb and piney resin. He even admitted that of three people, two will absolutely adore it, and one generally doesn’t. Steve and I definitely adored it, and it’s a unique combination that few brewers dare to try. I hope he keeps around.
We also got a sneak preview of the beer that would eventually become There Were 4 Musketeers, Right? (IPA, 7.5% ABV, 10 IBU). I kind of feel partially responsible for this beer name, since I distinctly remember us chatting about this as he pulled a drag of his soon-to-be finished pilsner off of the fermentation tanks in the back. As an IPA, this is right down the line, doubling down on more earthy qualities than the citrus forward notes the previous beers went for. It’s also a beer that hides its alcohol very well, and does not feel at all heavy or boozy.
And by the time you read this, he will have fully stocked his taplist up again, including that pilsner and a few porters and stouts which I was very disappointed not to be able to try. But his location is pretty easy to find, and if the crowds are anything to be believed the location will be around for plenty of years to come.
But keep that beer, Davy.
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