Island-Inspired Craft Brewery Launches

Island Session, one of 19-81 Brewing Co.’s three signature brews, is a Kolsch-style easy drinking ale, ideal for sunny Caribbean days.

Cayman’s craft beer fans have three new signature brews to enjoy this summer, courtesy of 19-81 Brewing Co. (“19-81”).

Named after the nautical coordinates of the Cayman Islands, brewery start-up 19-81 brings a trio of innovative, handcrafted flavors to the table: Island Session; Cayman Blonde; and Tropical IPA.

Canadian-born brewer Jordan MacNevin says the aim is to “appeal to our broad range of drinking palates – from easy-drinking beers to more complex craft characteristics.”

The Island Session (ABV 4.0% IBU 10) is a Kolsch-style ale made with El Dorado hops that give a unique aroma to complement a strong yeast character. The Cayman Blonde (5.0% ABV 10 IBU) is a smooth and well-rounded beer, with a subtle balance of honey, caramel malts and citrus hop aromas. Finally, the Tropical IPA (ABV 6.0% IBU 50) brings an island twist to a US-East Coast India pale ale, with pineapple, mango and grapefruit aromas balancing the cool bitterness of a traditional pale ale.

“Our signature brews are made with the best hops and malt available, and brewed using techniques that are geared towards taste rather than turnaround to produce the best quality craft beers,” Jordan explains. And he would know – with a graduate degree in Brewing Science from Bishop’s University, Quebec under his belt, and experience from New Brunswick’s Foghorn Brewing Company.

The brewery will be developing several limited-edition beers in collaboration with Caymanian farmers over the next year.

This emphasis on local culture also comes through in 19-81’s branding, featuring iconography such as a hand-drawn Cayman Catboat, maritime signal flags and rope detailing referencing the islands’ seafaring history, and a logo inspired by the Cayman Islands’ Coat of Arms (celebrating its 60th anniversary this year).

19-81 beers are available on tap at several local bars and restaurants, including Bar Crudo, Craft Food & Beverage Co., The King’s Head, The Lodge, Macabuca, Saltwater Grill and The Waterfront Urban Diner. From late July, it will be possible to sample the brews straight from the source, when the brewery unveils a dedicated tap room at its Dorcy Drive facility.