Last night we attended a screening of Brewmore, a documentary about the history and current landscape of craft beer in Baltimore. The film was made by Nick Kovacic, who founded local film production house Digital Cave Media.
The screening was held in MICA's Brown Center and, naturally, featured local craft beer, food from Joe Squared, and live music from Caleb Stine, who also provided the original soundtrack for the movie.
The film itself was fascinating for any self-proclaimed beer nerd and/or general lover of Baltimore City. Historian Maureen O'Prey and writer (and former Sun columnist) Ron Kasper chronicled Charm City's brewing history—from the influx of German immigrants to Prohibition to the empire that was National Brewing Company.
Interspersed between the historical timeline were profiles of current craft brewers in the city, including pioneers Hugh Sisson of Heavy Seas and Volker Stewart of The Brewer's Art, contract brewer Brian Strumke of Stillwater Artisanal Ales, Jon Zerivitz and Kevin Blodger of Union Craft Brewing, and home brewer Jed Jenny from The Wine Source.
The documentary included some beautiful shots of Baltimore (thanks to producer Matthew Riggieri and director of photography Mike O'Leary) and some special affection for the neon Natty Boh sign.
In general, the film extolled the virtues of craft beer and its positive relationship with the community, something that was mirrored in a Q&A with the brewers, filmmakers, and historians after the screening. As they discussed state legislation and beer trends on the horizon, there was a great sense of camaraderie on stage, which was a fitting finale for the night.
Brewmore will screen again at Heavy Seas Brewery on April 19. For more details and future screenings, check the documentary's website.