Summer is coming, and COVID-19 restrictions are lessening. After a year of in-home cooking and carry-out meals, people are voicing they're ready to break their shackles and head for restaurant patios. Especially grateful about more safe public gatherings are these three breweries: Crafty Chameleon, Perennial on Lockwood, and 4 Hands Brewing Co.
While operating as a crafts beer bar since 2013, Crafty Chameleon, 1384 Clarkson Clayton Center, opened as a brewery in Ellisville during February 2020, right before the lockdown.
Co-owners Jay Quezada and Robert Burt say at the time they invested in their brewery, they built out a small kitchen with a brick oven. When the lockdown happened, they managed to pivot to their homemade pizza and wings for carry-out that carried them through the past year.
Having a small, 3.5-barrel brewery allows them to have many seasonal beers, such as stouts in the winter and shandies and ciders in the spring and summer.
Among award-winning head brewer, Kerry Rozanski’s creations for summer will be a New England IPA lager and some imperial blackberry and raspberry ciders for spritzer cocktails.
PERENNIAL ON LOCKWOOD
Perennial on Lockwood is a new brewery in Webster Groves that opened last July in the middle of the lockdown. Emily Wymore, director of sales and marketing, and her husband, Phil, partnered with Olive + Oak owner Mark Hinkle and executive chef Jessie Mendica to open in the adjacent space at 216 Lockwood Ave. The restaurants share the patio, which makes for a convivial setting.
For the summer, Perennial will focus on saisons, which are lighter, traditional English pub beers, as well as several IPAs.
A popular shareable item is their pretzel monkey bread, made in-house and served with house-made beer mustard. Much of their food has a European influence, such as tarteè flambè, an Alsatian-style flatbread with asparagus, ham and a Mornay sauce.
4 HANDS BREWING CO.
4 Hands Brewing Co., 1220 S. 8th St., has been pleasing customers with a wide variety of craft beers since 2011.
The team at 4 Hands works to be a pillar in the community, and through the brewery’s City Wide American Pale Ale, has given back $1 a case since 2016 to more than 20 nonprofits. Their new brew, Statewide, a hazy pale ale, partners with the Veterans Community Project to support their efforts in creating a veterans community in North St. Louis.
Their newly launched seltzers, including apricot almond, blackberry pomegranate and pineapple mango, are perfect for St. Louis’ famously humid days.
Popular brews are Incarnation, a mosaic hopped IPA and City Wide American Pale Ale. Their partners at Peacemakers bring fan favorites, such as the Frisco melt and spicy-fried flounder sandwich, to the menu.