My grandpa used to tell me various idioms, like, “a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.” Holding a can of Green Cheek’s Sink or Swim IPA had me thinking of my ol’ pep-pep, and the time he gave me a sip from his ice cold beer as a kid. Sink or Swim has more meaning than just that, however; it’s the first release from a brand new brewery in Orange, Green Cheek Beer Company. Such a beer wouldn’t usually garner such a spectacle, but considering who made it immediately sent its stock price into hundred-person line territory. When Evan Price, previously of Noble Ale Works brews an IPA, people want to drink it.
“We didn’t anticipate such a huge turnout…we blew through almost all of our beer and had to adjust our hours to only three days a week! I need to get brewing!” – Evan Price, while having a beer at Hollingshead’s Deli in Orange.
Starting a new brewery these days is a precarious business proposition, one learned the hard way from the previous tenant who sold his brewery after four short years. For Evan Price and Brian Rauso, staying with the Noble Ale Works ‘bird in hand’ method may have seemed like the safest and familiar road, but it was time to fly the crowded coop after seeing so much success. When you have the 20-year business savvy of Brian and multiple award golden child of brewing skills of Evan, opening something new is easily worth 10 in the bush.
Open as of June 23rd, Green Cheek saw a constant stream of industry friends, fans, and beer tourists from San Diego, Los Angeles, and beyond. The excitement of Green Cheek in the beer scene is the squawk of the town, open with a Berliner Weisse-style beer, pils, stout, a pale, and around four IPA’s among cold brew coffee and tea on tap.
The brewery name references the beautiful, yet obnoxious, local parrot flock that flies around Orange.
Sink or Swim IPA, the first can release at 7.0 percent ABV, is a well-crafted New England-style beer, “bursting with huge hoppy aromas from massive amounts of Citra, Galaxy, and Mosaic hops. An expressive yeast is also used, helping to bring even more flavor to the table, while still complimenting all of the wonderful hop characteristics.” There’s no doubt the line at the next release (aimed at 7/15 per Evan) will have a different delivery method, which is TBA.
Until then, Green Cheek will be open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday until they have more beer in the hand…not in the bush!
Green Cheek Beer Company is at 2294 N. Batavia St. Unit C, Orange // greencheekbeer.com