By Liz Witbeck
Shmaltz Brewing Co. in Clifton Park is expanding this year, with plans in the works to establish an official tasting room in Troy, as well as create new beer brands.
Jeremy Cowan started the company in San Francisco. In 1996, he was driving around in his grandmother’s car in Northern California, delivering cases of beer. The company has come a long way since then. Cowan moved to New York City and established the Clifton Park brewery in 2013.
“Our goal is to make high-end beers that are fun, based on a concept, and that don’t fit into traditional beer styles,” said Cowan.
Shmaltz Brewing is best known for its He’brew beer, the line first created by Cowan. Today, He’brew is sold in 35 states across the country, in 5,000 retail locations, according to the company.
The company is known for its beer names, inspired by Jewish themes, as well as unique flavors. Customers can choose from the Hop Manna IPA; the Messiah nut brown ale; the Jewbelation anniversary ale; a Pastrami Pilsner, brewed with kosher salt, cracked pepper, natural horseradish and mustard seed; and Chanukah golden ale, brewed with cocoa nibs.
In 2018, the company will be delivering a new line of beers called 518 Craft, named after the telephone area code it is located in.
It has already launched the first beer under the 518 Craft line, called Pick Me Up. It is a collaboration with Wired Coffee Roasters in Malta. Cowan called it a triple brown ale, with notes of chocolate, brown caramel, vanilla and coffee.
This is not the first collaboration that Shmaltz has with local businesses. In 2017, it teamed up with radio station WEQX of Manchester, Vt., to create Independent Ale, a session ale with hints of wheat and northwestern hops. It was sold throughout the Capital Region.
In 2017, Hurricane Harvey demolished many areas in Texas and surrounding areas. Shmaltz collaborated with three breweries across the United States—8th Wonder Brewery, Renegade Brewing, and Terrapin Beer—to create three unique versions of Reunion Ale 2017. Proceeds benefitted the Hurricane Harvey relief fund.
Shmaltz has had its main brewery in Clifton Park since 2013. Located at 6 Fairchild Square, they have a 50-barrel brewery, capable of crafting 30,000 barrels annually.
The new tasting room storefront will be located in Monument Square in downtown Troy. It will open at 200 Broadway, where a Subway shop was formerly located.
“Troy is a great town. Everything is evolving so quickly,” said Cowan.
The lineup of beers will include the new 518 Craft brand. The tasting room will also have a variety of other beers and ciders available from New York producers. A small menu of food will be available. It will be available for private events.
The tasting room is slated to open in early 2018., but Cowan did not give a specific date.
The company website is shmaltzbrewing.com.