The mere mention of beer is often enough to get craft beer lovers to pour into a taproom. Twin Leaf Brewery, located in Asheville, North Carolina, strives to give beer lovers a reason beyond the taps to flock to the brewery. Hosting monthly Beer BeCause events, the brewery has a unique focus on the non-profits and projects it supports.
Twin Leaf’s philanthropic mission specifically focuses on organizations that support STEM programs, youth science education, environmental and conservation efforts. “Mission-based fundraising isn’t a new concept,” says Ashley Jones, Twin Leaf’s event coordinator. “However, we are simply embracing the concept with our own twist on how we promote our brand through fundraising.”
Jones also notes, “We live in a very beautiful part of the world and we want to work with those that want to preserve it for future generations.”
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The Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation, Bee City USA and Friends of the Smokies are all among the conservation organizations the brewery supports. “All of the staff at the brewery are very active outdoors, from mountain biking and hiking to gardening and composting,” says Jones.
Making a Statement with ‘Mass Extinction’ Imperial Stout
Owner Tim Weber always has a hand in the selection of the Beer BeCause event organizations. His love of nature led him to the mountains of North Carolina six years ago in order to open his now 4-year-old brewery. One of Weber’s most anticipated events is the annual release of the Mass Extinction Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout, a beer that benefits the Asheville Museum of Science. Weber specifically chose to create a beer to support the museum to further their efforts to in youth scientific exploration.
“Science teaches critical thinking, problem-solving and a respect and love for nature,” says Weber. “Coming from an engineering and science background I strongly feel that science literacy is something that is really missing in this country. It’s just magical to watch children get excited about science!”
The museum houses many interactive educational experiences for youth including a replica of the Mars Rover, a hurricane simulator and a STEM lab for daily classes.
“Mass Extinction is a statement on the massive loss and die off of the plants and animals that is happening now,” adds Weber. “With nature and science appreciation, hopefully our future generations will recognize the beauty of nature and the importance of saving what we have now.”
The interactive children’s museum boasts an awe-inspiring fossilized Teratophoneus Curriei that served as the inspiration for the beers label and name.
“STEM education brings the fun back into science with hands-on learning and fun, and I want to support that in the biggest way I can.” Tim Weber, Twin Leaf Brewing
“All kids are born natural explorers and scientists and at some point they lose that interest when science becomes books, memorization and testing,” says Weber. “STEM education brings the fun back into science with hands-on learning and fun, and I want to support that in the biggest way I can.”
Twin Leaf’s ‘Bee Beer’
The love for science and nature goes beyond fundraising efforts. Weber and assistant brewer Jose Busto also work with local farms and maltsters to craft the many beers that are created in the brewery. Some of the seasonal favorites include the Rosemary IPA, the Fleurs du Soleil, Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Stout, and a range of lagers and Belgian-style ales.
The Fleurs du Soleil, or commonly called the “Bee Beer,” is created each year to benefit Bee City USA, which was founded to create awareness about the importance of protecting the habitats of our pollinators.
“Fleurs Du Soleil is made with black tea and honey from Twin Leaf’s very own bee yard. The Rosemary IPA uses rosemary that was handpicked the day it went into production for the beer. We use local pumpkins for the chocolate beer and even roast them on the farm where they were grown,” says Weber. “It’s the best thing about being and staying a small brewery. Since we are not required to brew the same beer over and over for distribution like many larger breweries, we have the ability literally hand-pick many of the ingredients that make our beer so amazing.”
You can visit Twin Leaf at 144 Coxe Avenue on the South Slope in Asheville, North Carolina.
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