Although Great Raft Brewing
’s beer has popped up around town here and there since the brewery announced New Orleans distribution through Crescent Crown, this week is the official rollout. The Shreveport brewery’s co-founders Andrew and Lindsay Nations will be in town all week to meet with retailers and customers. Right now, Great Raft’s beers will be on draft only, but with the company's planned brewery expansion and subsequent increase in capacity, the Nations hope to have their canned beer available in time for parades and Mardi Gras.
Here is the planned schedule of Great Raft rollout events for this week (all events start at 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted):
Monday, November 10:
The Nations will be joined by Great Raft brewmaster Harvey Kenney at Lager’s
in Metairie (3501 Veterans Memorial Blvd., 504-887-9923). In addition to flagship beers Southern Drawl pale lager (which Kenney says has been hopped up considerably in recent batches) and Commotion Pale Ale, Lager’s will have the brewery’s brand new limited run beer, Creature of Habit Coffee Brown Ale. After Monday, Kenney is returning to Shreveport to get back to brewing, so this is the only opportunity to meet him.
Tuesday, November 11:
Enjoy Southern Drawl, Commotion Pale Ale, and their black lager Reasonably Corrupt on one of the nicest bar decks in the city at Bayou Beer Garden
(326 N. Jefferson Davis Pkwy., 504-302-9357) in Mid-City. Lindsay and Andrew will both be on hand to talk about their beer during Patio Trivia.
Wednesday, November 12:
It’s Great Raft Pint Night at both Bulldog Pubs
— at 5 p.m. in Mid-City (5135 Canal Blvd., 504-488-4180; ) the Nations will be presenting all three flagship beers (Southern Drawl, Commotion, and Reasonably Corrupt) along with Creature of Habit Coffee Brown Ale. At 7:30 p.m., the party will move over to the Uptown location (3236 Magazine St., 504-891-1516) with Southern Drawl, Reasonably Corrupt, and Creature of Habit.
Thursday, November 13:
The Great Raft crew moves up to the Riverbend to the Snooty Cooter
(509 S. Carrollton Ave., 504-866-9104) — to quote Lindsay, “Because who doesn’t love saying the words ‘Snooty Cooter’?” The three flagship beers will be on draft and available as a flight as well.
Friday, November 14:
Enjoy Southern Drawl, Commotion Pale Ale, and Reasonably Corrupt black lager at Ale
on Oak Street (8124 Oak St., 504-324-6558). Take advantage of the gorgeous weather to sit in the courtyard that separates Ale from Oak Wine Bar, and order some Chisesi ham and gruyere hot pockets or lamb sliders to accompany Great Raft’s food friendly beer.
Saturday, November 15:
Great Raft will be serving its beer alongside dozens of other breweries at the Bayou Beer Festival
held at the Southdown Plantation in Houma beginning at noon.
Note: the first of the last two kegs in existence of Great Raft’s At Arms Length Imperial Pale Lager was tapped at the Avenue Pub
(1732 St. Charles Ave., 504-586-9243) on Sunday afternoon, so anyone looking to try this beer should head to the Pub before it’s all gone.