It's not easy to go from home brewer to professional brewer, Tom Carpenter says, but he feels lucky that he has been able to produce good beers that have been well-received.
Carpenter and his wife, Stacie, recently opened 2Toms Brewing on Wells Street, adding to the growing craft-brewing scene in Fort Wayne.
Taking a culinary approach to brewing, Carpenter says he is “really big about the ingredients we use, the flavors we use. ... We're big about getting the look, the taste, the texture and the aroma coming through on the beer.”
His specialty is a hazy, or New England-style, IPA, but visitors to the brewery at 3676 Wells St. can expect to see everything from kettle sours to big stouts.
The brewery has 10 beers on tap, with room for 16. Among them are Ryes & Shine, a rye Saison in a Belgian style, dry hopped with Nelson Sauvin hops, and Coconut Oak Splitter, with notes of coconut, chocolate and coffee.
The Selleck, a part of the Other Tom series, was the most popular over opening weekend, Carpenter says, adding that it made up 30 percent of sales.
The series is a response to one of the most often asked questions: Who is the other Tom?
Carpenter, whose wife joked that he needed to clone himself, says the other Tom is everyone who invested in him during his brewing venture.
“It's a play on other famous Toms out there,” he says. “There will be some really juicy hazy IPAs.”
Carpenter's interest in craft beer began about five years ago. He says he enjoyed the flavors and tastes and as his full-time job gave him the opportunity to travel, he was able to explore breweries in other cities.
When he began homebrewing, he says he did not intend to turn it into a business – even though he acted like a professional brewer, making labels and managing an account on untappd, a social media platform for beer lovers. He shared his creations, and the feedback was overwhelming. People told Carpenter, who has spent the better part of the last decade in the business world, that his beers were not just good – they were better than others they had tried.
“Using my science background, it fed a need I didn't know I had,” says Carpenter, who has an undergraduate degree in engineering and also studied chemistry and microbiology. “To get such good feedback on the product, it was a good match.”
Hours for the brewery will be 4 to 10 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, noon to 10 p.m. Saturdays and 2 to 8 p.m. Sundays.
Tickets are still available for the Farm-to-Fork Trolley Tour on Saturday in Wabash.
Participants will ride on Trolley No. 85 to RiverRidge Farm where they will be given a tour of the four-season vegetable farm, followed by dinner served on the lawn prepared by KenapocoMocha Coffee Shop.
Dinner will include an organic tomato galette with goat cheese and a loaded fresh garden salad. All items are harvested from RiverRidge Farm.
The event begins at 5:30 p.m. Tickets cost $45 a person and can be purchased at TicketTailor.com.
For more information, go to visitwabashcounty.com/tours-and-trolley-rentals.
5 years strong
Rudy's Shop will celebrate its fifth birthday with a block party Aug. 10.
The party, from 5 p.m. to midnight, includes live music, beer from Mad Anthony Brewing Co. and specials on wine and wine slushies. Plus, Rudy will be cooking up burgers and dogs on the grill.
The street near the 409 W. Brackenridge St. shop will be closed for the event.
Admission is free. Must be 21 or older to attend.
• A Smoothie King has opened at 1824 W. Dupont Road. Hours are 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.
• The Burger King at 3710 E. Dupont Road is temporarily closed for renovations.
The Dish features restaurant news and food events and appears Wednesdays. Fax news items to 461-8893, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 461-8304.