South Florida Brewers Collaborate on Beers to Help Bahamas Relief Efforts

The Onward Together brew crew.EXPAND
The Onward Together brew crew.
Photo courtesy of Care Connected
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Craft breweries from West Palm Beach to Key West have teamed up to brew beers to help relief efforts in the Bahamas after Hurricane Dorian in early September decimated some of the 700 islands in the archipelago nation.

Eleven South Florida breweries have collaborated on Onward Together, a beer that will benefit recovery efforts in the northern Bahamas.

The beer is a pilsner brewed with tropical fruits such as mango, sour orange, pineapple, and coconut. Named for the motto on the Bahamas' coat of arms — "Forward Upward Onward Together" — the beer will be available in South Florida taprooms beginning October 26.

Participating breweries are Veza Sur, West Palm Beach Brewery and Wine Vault, Florida Keys Brewing, Broski Ciderworks, SaltWater, M.I.A. Beer, the Tank, Tarpon River, Concrete Beach, Barrel of Monks, and Wynwood Brewing.

They'll pour Onward Together on tap, and 100 percent of the proceeds will benefit the recovery efforts in the Bahamas.

Immediately after Dorian struck the islands, breweries across South Florida began collecting donations for Bahamians who were affected by the Category 5 hurricane, but the region's beer community wanted to do more.

"It was heartbreaking to see the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas," says Rhett Dougherty, head brewer at Veza Sur. "We've been collecting donations at the brewery but knew there was more we could do to help, so that's where this collaboration came in."

Another group of brewers has collaborated on Bahamas Strong, an IPA by Civil Society, J. Wakefield, 3 Sons, Unseen Creatures, and Tripping Animals. The beer uses ingredients donated by several companies. It's brewed with two-row malt, oat malt, and flaked wheat donated by Country Malt, as well as Mosaic, Simcoe, and Motueka hops donated by Yakima Chief. The beer is fermented with an English yeast strain contributed by BSI Yeast, and the labels were donated by Brightfish Labels. One hundred percent of the proceeds go to Bahamians affected by Hurricane Dorian.

Miami's Beat Culture Brewery has also made a beer to raise money for recovery efforts. The Bahama Yellow is a Hefeweizen that's available in the brewery's taproom and at Kush, Lokal, and Exit 1.

The powerful storm's 183-mph sustained winds struck the northern Bahamas September 1 and remained over the region for nearly two days. Hurricane Dorian killed at least 61 people, and 608 are still reported missing, according to the Weather Channel.

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