The reputation of “420,” a number symbolic of both an entire culture giddily stricken with reefer madness and the annual celebration they rally behind, is largely fueled by a slew of intriguing origin stories. Among them half-baked Deadheads, a supposed police code for “smoking in progress,” and a group of California-based high school ruffians called the “Waldos.”
Yet no matter which story you ascribe to, the underlying principle behind 420 is the same: getting your buzz on in good company and hopefully devouring an unreasonable amount of delicious grub. And in recognition of such a noble cause, Captain Lawrence Brewing Co. (CLBC) is hosting a beer dinner this 4/20, during which they will do a limited beer release of Can-a-Bliss, their corn-infused IPA collaboration with the dinner’s co-host, Brooklyn’s Other Half Brewing Co.
The menu for CLBC’s dinner, the fourth of it’s kind, seems enticing enough. Chef Joe Smith, the brewery’s new executive chef, has curated a five-course pairing menu based entirely from locally-sourced ingredients that is designed to complement the brews course by course. If you’d like, take a look at the planned menu yourself, but the TL;DR version should probably point out the shrimp and grits, a chicken fired skirt steak coupled with a cranberry ale, and the duck confit pancakes paired with the CLBC-Other Half collaboration.
Like a coach talking up his most recent draft, CLBC’s founder and head brewer Scott Vaccaro talks up Smith as “a very talented guy, his ability to create a menu that compliments our beers is exactly what we were looking for. What Joe is doing for these beer dinners is really next level.”
Still, it’s the Can-a-Bliss that seems the most enticing draw for the dinner next Thursday. As they grew in popularity, CLBC’s batch sizes grew, too. But recently, they’ve taken to brewing small batches, of 100 cases or so headed by experimental brewer Justin Sturges, causing people to line up at the door.
Sam Richardson of Other Half and Scott Vaccaro of Captain Lawrence, hopefully planning their next diabolical limited release.
Other Half is a newer brewery and is used to crafting small batches and limited releases. They’ve only been around since 2014, but their popularity on the craft beer scene is apparent, especially with a charismatic social media presence and cult following.
Whether or not you consider yourself “420-friendly,” it’s pretty fun to get into the spirit of any celebration, and Captain Lawrence is doing this one justice.