Best New Breweries, No. 9: Cutters Brewing Company

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0914-CUTTERSEditor’s Note, March 10, 2015: Cutters announced on Facebook that it will cease all operations immediately.

 

There’s no formal taproom to speak of at Cutters Brewing Company, and just finding the place is an adventure that requires a death-defying left turn across traffic on Rockville Road if you’re coming from Indy. Still, loyal customers don’t seem to mind making the effort to seek out this “hard-working beer” at its source. Co-owners Monte Speicher and Chris Inman started their scrappy one-barrel brewery in 2010 in a Bloomington garage (the name is a B-town stone-cutters reference, and the logo appropriately depicts a figure chiseling limestone). But the operation quickly gained a following, eventually forcing them to upgrade and relocate to Avon in November 2012. The new digs accommodate a 30-barrel-capacity brewing system and a tasting area at the back of a nondescript warehouse. When the beer is this good, there’s no need for fussy embellishments. The citrusy Monon Wheat proves a tasty thirst-quencher on sweaty late-summer days. The most popular brew, though, is Floyd’s Folly Scottish Ale, a malty tribute to Speicher’s grandfather Floyd McCoy, a cutter who was mortally felled by a limestone slab in 1959.

Generally speaking, these are high-octane beers. The Empire Imperial Stout clocks in at a face-slapping 10 percent ABV, with Floyd’s Folly and Rye on the Scarecrow IPA trailing close behind at 8 percent. The Lost River Blonde summer ale (4.9 percent) or one of the catch-em-while-you-can seasonals like the smooth Pentagon Porter (5.4 percent) are smarter choices for session drinking.

You really have to like this stuff to go to the trouble of finding the brewery and sampling on-site. Fortunately, Cutters started canning its five flagship beers in February for a surprisingly wide distribution radius that stretches across Indiana and into Ohio and Illinois. And the production facility promises to add pint sales, food-truck visits, and parking-lot cornhole soon. The owners seem to realize that for a beer this good, the current experience at home just isn’t cutting it.

9973 U.S. 36, Avon, 317-203-9675, cuttersbrewing.com

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