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Go 419 Spirits | Getting festive with Catawba Island Brewing Co.’s Cookie Cutter Holiday Ale

Chatting with Catawba Island Brewing Co. about the inspiration behind their holiday ale.

PORT CLINTON, Ohio — The season has arrived for darker beers with festive tasting notes. Believe it or not, holiday ales come out as early as September. After speaking with Sales Manager Jay Killion and Head Brewer Justin Williams on Catawba Island Brewing Co.’s Cookie Cutter Holiday Ale, there’s more to the holiday season in the craft beer industry than meets the eye.

Catawba Island Brewing Co. is located on East Harbor Road in Port Clinton. The taproom has ample seating indoors as well as firepits outdoors. It was explained how the space is designed to be a place to gather and build community. Catawba Island Brewing Co. Sales Manager Jay shared that the taproom only has one television with the purpose of inspiring great conversation over local spirits.

Filming took place the last week of October with excitement building on the release of the Cookie Cutter Ale. When asked how long the craft beer will be available Head Brewer Justin said, “Hopefully, our Christmas ale will run through to the end of the year.”

Credit: WTOL 11

In addition to the ale being available in the Catawba Island Brewing Co. taproom, it will also be packaged and shipped throughout the state. “So our distribution covers all the state of Ohio. You’ll be able to find our Cookie Cutter through Columbus, Cleveland, Toledo, Dayton and Cincinnati,” Jay explained.

After sharing where the Cookie Cutter Ale can be found Jay further conversed how the beer was hitting the market a “little later than last year.” This provoked more questions on how the craft beer season differs from other industries.

Justin expanded on the craft beer release schedule by stating “There have been some Christmas ales that have been out since the beginning of September.” The conversation enlightened the expectations of seasonal beers release dates and when they will be pulled off tap.

Diving into the inspiration of the Cookie Cutter Ale Justin said “You are looking at the best of the Holiday season. You’re talking cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg and a good, caramelly sweetness. It conjures, very much, childhood memories in an adult beverage.”

Credit: WTOL 11

Just as Justin implied all the aromas that come to mind during the holidays are evident in the Cookie Cutter ale. Greeting the taste buds with cinnamon and finishing with sweet nutmeg and caramel warmth.

Most brewers start their journey by creating their own beverages at home. Like others Justin began his journey at home but not brewing beer; wine was his spirit of choice. Catawba Island Brewing Co. had an opening and Justin worked his way up to Head Brewer. He explained how timing is everything when it comes to beer, a skill that was learned at home and mastered in the brewing room.

As Sales Manager, Jay is often found behind the bar at tasting events and themed festivals. He also shared his enthusiasm for dark beers. Next time you are at an event where Catawba Island Brewing Co. is, look for Jay.

The holiday season is among us and the Cookie Cutter ale is available through the end of the year. Whether you make a trip to Port Clinton or ask for this craft beer at your local pub the Cooking Cutter ale is sure to get you in the holiday spirit.