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Welcome to Empyrean Brewing Co.’s Beer School! Whether you’re a seasoned beer aficionado or a curious newcomer, here’s everything you need to know about what to expect at Beer School. Let’s break this down!

What is Beer School?

  • A 20+ Year Tradition: Beer School has been an ongoing tradition for over 20 years. First held in 1998, it was created to introduce Empyrean beers to our distributors, restaurant workers, and bartenders in Lincoln.
  • Opening Our Doors: Growing interest led us to open our doors to everyone, turning it into a beloved Lincoln tradition.
  • Community Gathering: Now, with free beer tastings and our lessons on beer styles and brewing processes, we have created a space for lively conversations with knowledgeable brewers, who entertain up to 150 attendees monthly!
  • See Ya on Monday: Join us on the first Monday of each month for this free event, open to the public.

Attendees get their samples during Beer School in the Dock are

Who Can Attend?

  • Open to EVERYONE: No need to know the difference between hops and malts, the difference between an IPA and a double IPA, or what the legs of a beer mean. Just come as you are, no studying required.
  • All Levels Welcome: We welcome all levels of knowledge and experience. Our brewers are ready and eager to teach you—no, seriously, their favorite subject is beer, and many have been at it forever. Good luck getting them to stop once their on a roll.
  • Learn and Enjoy: We’re passionate about educating people about craft beer and making it FUN. All you need is open-minded curiosity and an appreciation for craft brews.
  • Age Requirement: Note: you must be 21+ to attend Beer School. We’re generous, but not that generous.

When and Where?

  • First Monday of Every Month: Catch us on the first Monday of every month. (except those pesky holidays. Then you’ll see us the second Monday)
  • Stay Updated: Keep an eye on our socials, especially our Facebook events page. Sometimes you’ll get a sneak preview of the beers you’ll be sampling, along with a link to the jukebox (a.k.a. our shared Spotify playlist to set the mood).
  • Doors Open at 7 p.m.: No time to wait when it comes to beer!

Attendees line up outside of Empyrean Brewing Co for Beer School

Before the Event

  • Line Up Early: Plan to line up in front of our building (729 Q St, Lincoln, NE 68508) at least 10 minutes early to snag a good spot. It’s first come, first served, and the early birds get the beer (anyone will get the beer). Some dedicated folks line up even earlier, but if you can’t make it right at 7 p.m., no worries—come whenever, as long as we have room.
  • Parking: There’s usually street parking available in the Haymarket area and several parking garages. Some street parking is free after 6 p.m., and you can pay with coins, Visa, MasterCard, or the PassportParking Mobile Pay app.
  • Friendly Faces: Once parked, line up along the white coffee roasters wall. Don’t worry, everyone’s super friendly, so if you look lost, someone will help you out. Otherwise, feel free to shoot us a message on social, and we’ll guide you to where you need to be!

Checking In

  • Bring Your I.D.: One of our brewers will begin checking people into our “dock” area.
  • Get Your Ticket: After checking your I.D., they will give you a ticket with one of our beers labeled on it and two punches. This ticket represents which group you belong to in the Beer School sessions and acts as your drink sample ticket.

Now That You’re Here…

  • Stay Entertained: It can get a little crowded pretty quickly. But don’t worry, we have plenty of ways to keep you entertained while you wait for your sample.
    • Beer Board: As you walk in check out the chalkboard to see which beers we’re serving for sampling. Sometimes they match the beers you’ll taste in the sessions; other times, they’re different. They also change from month to month.
    • QR Code for Spotify: Make sure to look around and see a QR code for our Spotify. This is where you can help shape the night and show off your taste in music. We’ve got a new collaborative playlist each month. Remember the first rule of Spotify— just don’t kill the vibe.
    • Merch Discount: You will also see signs with a merch discount exclusive to Beer School Attendees. Take advantage! Peruse the online merch store, and envision yourself sipping a cool can of craft beer and rocking a tee from your favorite Nebraska brewery.

Brewer signs off on a beer sample ticket. Plastic cups of beer on a table at beer school with

  • Beer Sampling: You can time your beer sampling by looking at your group name. We go in alphabetical order, around every 15 minutes. So if you’re in the Burning Skye group, you’re up first and might want to wait for your beer sample until after your sessions. Beer samples must stay in the main “dock” area and be finished or thrown away before you go to your session.
  • Chat with Brewers: When you get to the bar area for your beer sample, feel free to chat with our brewers. They have a vast amount of knowledge and can answer some of your oddest questions. If you stump them, don’t worry—you’ll have another chance to ask our Head Brewer Tim and our Operations Manager Jim.
  • Bathroom Info: A private bathroom is located on the upper level. Take the elevator to the first floor. Sometimes, additional seating and standing room are available up there to alleviate crowding. The brewers can help you locate it if you’re lost.
  • Listen for Your Group: Keep your ears open for your group to be called. Once it’s your turn, head to the entrance and follow a brewer to your next stop.

Part 1

  • Grain Room: Once your group is called, a brewer will take you to the grain room in our brew house.
  • Meet Jim: Now you’ll hear from Jim, Operations Manager. He usually will give samples of two to three craft beers—some from Empyrean, but others can be from around the country or even the world!
  • Learn and Taste: Often times the samples will have similarities, and Jim highlights the styles, trends, or unique characteristics of each beer. He will relate the beers to the theme of the night, which changes every month. Jim can tell you tall tales of Empyrean’s history, and he’s even a wiz at the craft beer industry worldwide. He’s been around the block a time or two.

Jim entertains attendees in the grain room

Part 2

  • Tim’s Session: Next up is Tim’s session in the brew house. He’ll have a food pairing from Lazlo’s Brewery & Grill ꟷ Haymarket, ready for you.
  • Food and Beer Pairing: Enjoy some small nibbles with two to three beer samples that perfectly complement the food.
  • Brewing Insights: Tim, our head brewer and official brewmaster, will explain the complexities of the brewing process, different beer styles, and what’s hot on the market right now.
  • Beer Style Requests: Got a specific beer style you love? Tim’s the guy to hassle with your requests. He won’t promise anything, but is always open to listening to your ideas.

Tim hands out samples in the brew house

Back at the Dock

  • Finish Up: When you’re done with your sessions, come on back to the dock. Do you have drink tickets left? Perfect! Grab the last of your samples.
  • Hang Out: Chill with friends, make some new ones, and vibe to the music.
  • Pint Night: When you’re ready, head over to Lazlo’s Brewery & Grill ꟷ Haymarket for Pint Night in the bar area. Snag a free pint glass with a purchase of Empyrean beer (while supplies last).

Thanks for hanging out! See you next time, ya nerds!

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