Let’s shift gears for a bit and celebrate a new brewery located JUST outside Pittsburgh.
Let’s kick things off by introducing our friends at Couch Brewery.
Located in the Larimer neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Couch Brewery has been a Porter Tours stop since they opened in April 2017.
Cary and Darren (and their third partner, Mike) have been lifelong home brewers who took their passion from hobby to full-scale production. They are Veteran owned and always down to chat + give advice to folks getting into the brewery scene.
Yes, it gives us a chuckle. Yes, it’s true.
Couch Brewery has several beers NAMED AFTER different styles of couches. It’s comfortable, cute and easy to distinguish amongst their fellow Pittsburgh breweries. For example, you might come in and try the Plush (pale ale) or the Recliner (oatmeal stout) or even the Ottoman Empire (double IPA).
You might have yourself a Loveseat (east coast IPA) and take a growler to go.
Who knows? You could arrive with Porter Tours and fall in love with the Shag (American blonde ale). Amazing.
Several years ago, I visited Mike and Cary – now, my Couch Brewery partners. They were home brewing. I had home brewed before so I was ready for what they had to offer. They gave me the very first version of what is now our Raspberry Duvet.
It was so good, I didn’t even finish it. I thought, let’s launch a business.
– Darren, Couch Brewery
Originally, there were four of us who partnered up to start the brewery: Darren, myself (Cary), Mike and Barry.
Barry was the type of guy who would really take his time on making a big decision. We were on vacation together in the Cayman Islands when we told him about our idea. We wanted to start a brewery.
Barry smoked a cigarette. And then decided. He was in. Quickest decision he ever made. That was in September 2014.
Tragically, in March of 2015, Barry and his wife were killed in a car accident.
We had to regroup. We were shaken. We found ourselves thinking: ‘What would Barry want us to do?’
Well, we decided to continue. And here we are today.
– Cary, Couch Brewery
When we came up with the name Couch Brewery, we looked at a lot of other breweries. One thing we noticed was they have a lot of hard surfaces. We wanted a place for folks to sit for hours. We thought: ‘Where are you most relaxed and at ease?’ …
On a soft COUCH!
And hell, why not have a beer while you’re relaxing on that couch.
Although we are very serious about our beer and our business, we want you to have fun and be comfortable.
Yes, we have board games.
Yes, we actually have couches.
Yes, we host Bingo Night.
Yes, we book food trucks.
Yes, we can be reserved for private parties.
At the end of the day, we just want folks to drink comfortably.
– Darren, Couch Brewery
Taking brewing from a hobby and scaling it up to actual production is a learning process. To be honest, we’re coming up on our one year and it’s only gotten easier here in the last two months.
We’re at a point where things are starting to feel normal. There’s always unexpected stuff that happens. But we’re learning for sure.
– Cary, Couch Brewery
Howdy friends! Aadam here.
I joined the Porter team in 2017 as a tour guide. I enjoy saying things like ‘Wowee!’ and ‘Hello.’
We’re very excited to roll out a Porter Tours photo series to take folks behind the scenes at some of our brewery stops along the tour.
Pittsburgh has embraced its growing craft beer scene, but how much does the city know about its ACTUAL brewers? Join me as we go in-depth to gather advice for home brewers and find out how each brewer got his / her start.
We’ll also give you a sneak peek of what to expect when you book a tour and some pro tips for craft beer beginners too.
As part of our Porter Tours photo series, we’ve partnered up with our friend Ali, better known as @pghbeergirl!
If you don’t already follow her on Instagram, we recommend checking in with her to get the latest on the craft beer scene, both locally and across the country.
She is a contributor at @breweriesinpa and is a die-hard Pittsburgher, through and through. Ali will be sharing her knowledge, insights, pro tips and recommendations at each of our stops along the way. We’re v thankful to have her with us.
Cobblehaus Brewing Company in Coraopolis surprised friends (and newsletter subscribers!) with a short-notice soft opening Saturday evening. What the brewery lacked in formalities, like tables, it made up for with impressive German- and Belgian-inspired varieties and eager beer enthusiasts.
Bar seating filled quickly so people claimed chairs throughout the taproom and filled in on foot. It made for an intimate atmosphere, like a friend’s house warming. Great glimpse at what will certainly a popular brewery.
The beers (link) we tried — Belgian triple, wit and hefeweizen — were all enjoyable and perfectly drinkable, especially on a warm spring afternoon.
No Porter tours are planned at this time, but we look forward to visiting them soon. In the meantime, the official grand opening is planned for next week. Keep an eye for it. The beer and brewery are well worth the trek.
And bring some extra cash for brewery swag!