When Matt Frosch decided to go into the brewing business in 2013, he and his wife, Kristina, did so with a one-barrel brewery.
Let’s put this into perspective. Bud Light produces and sells 40 million barrels annually. One barrel equals 31 gallons of beer. That’s more than 1.2 billion gallons of one single type of beer, not counting the dozens of other brands in the company’s portfolio.
Frosch and his team had their work cut out for them with The Litchfield Taproom by Peoria Artisan Brewery. This small brewery was the company’s sole location before expanding to Peoria in 2015. The newer location has a five-barrel system, allowing for more production.
In Litchfield Park, the taproom carries a variety of beers, which includes mainstays like the hoppy Savannah Marie IPA, Haboob Black IPA and the smooth Angus Boy Scottish Ale.
“However, we have recently embarked upon a small barrel-aging program in Litchfield that I am very excited about,” Frosch said.
“We served our first barrel-aged beer at Litchfield Park several weeks ago with a blonde ale called Whiskey Girl. When the brew team told me they were planning a blonde ale for barrel aging, I was shocked. But they produced an amazing brew that was a perfect example of what short-term barrel aging can do for a beer. It was packed with complex flavors and a vanilla finish that was just amazing.”
Litchfield expands beyond its creations. A hallmark of the Arizona craft brewing scene is the local partnerships that organically come to life, reflecting an “Arizona first” state of mind.
“We are focusing more on farmhouse ales at our Litchfield Park taproom,” he said. “We have a traditional farmhouse blend and another blend with raspberries aging in whiskey barrels from our friends at Hamilton Distillers of Tucson.
“We are releasing our first farmhouse ale brewed in the saison-style, which is a true ode to the importance of the yeast. Blending, barreling and the incorporation of wild yeast is where we are going in Litchfield and I couldn’t be more excited about where this will take us and the creativity it will allow.”
The Litchfield Taproom, which hosts happy hour from 3 to 7 p.m. daily, offers a limited menu to complement the beers, like pretzels, meat and cheese platters, mixed nuts and jerky.
Frosch said the key to the taproom’s success is the location, however.
“The people and camaraderie of the neighborhood made this the perfect location for us,” he said. “Litchfield Park is a close-knit community with good people and we were immediately welcomed to the area. From day one, we’ve been supported by the community and when you’re opening a brewery, the community is one of the most important facets of establishing a successful business. A brewery should be a reflection of the community and we are proud to be a part of this community.”