LONGWOOD, FLORIDA— The seventh annual Florida SMaSH Beer Festival will feature 35 breweries serving single malt, single hop beers made with Riverbend Malt and Yakima Quality Hops tapping Saturday, January 28 at Reiter Park. 

Presented by the Brewers Establishing Altruistic Regional Development (B.E.A.R.D.) nonprofit organization, Hourglass Brewing, and the City of Longwood, the Florida SMaSH Beer Festival was created to celebrate the creativity and camaraderie of breweries in the Sunshine State. Participating breweries will craft beers made with Riverbend Chesapeake Pilsner malt and Yakima Quality Hops YQH-1320.

“Riverbend is honored and excited to be the malt selection of SMaSH Fest this year,” says Riverbend Malt House’s Georgia, Florida, and Alabama Territory Manager Tyler Adams. “This is a chance to taste how Southeastern malt really shines through in beer, and a celebration of the different flavors that Florida breweries have to offer.”

The winning beer is chosen by the attendees who vote on the S.M.a.S.H. beer that impresses them the most. The winner will receive the coveted, ever-evolving Florida SMaSH Festival Champions Lamp. Each winner takes this trophy home until the next SMaSH beer festival and garnishes it with their own additions each year.

Also during the festival, a Judge’s Choice competition will take place to award first, second, and third place medals. 

This year’s Florida SMaSH Beer Festival proceeds will be donated to A Spoonful of Hope, Second Harvest Food Bank’s signature product line. One hundred percent of the proceeds directly support Second Harvest’s no-cost 16-week Culinary Training program, which provides qualified, economically challenged adults with the culinary and life skills training to pursue a sustainable career in the food industry.

“Florida SMaSH Beer Festival has the ability to show you how the same ingredients dont always mean the same interpretation of a beer,” says Bill Murphy of Hourglass Brewing. “It’s also a great way to see what the state as a whole can bring to the table. The best part is, it all comes back to the community.”

Tickets to the festival are available via Eventbrite, and festival details can be found at www.flsmash.com



Brewers Establishing Altruistic Regional Development (B.E.A.R.D.) is a non-profit organization created by brewing industry professionals with a mission to serve their communities. Over 7 years, B.E.A.R.D. has successfully donated more than $45,000  to local charitable organizations such as A Spoon Full of Hope.


Hourglass Brewing is now serving their 10th year, producing Seminole County’s first small batch craft beer. With two locations in the Orlando area and no less than 30 beers on tap they continually push for innovation while holding on to nostalgia, with a thirst for good times. Visit Hourglass online at hourglassbrewing.com

Contact Bill Murphy at bill@hourglassbrewing.com with media inquiries about Hourglass Brewing. 


Riverbend Malt House is on a quest to connect Southeastern family owned farms and fermenters. Co-Founders Brent Manning and Brian Simpson launched Riverbend, the first craft malt house east of the Mississippi River, in Asheville, North Carolina in 2010. Buoyed by a 70,000 square foot production facility and state of the art equipment, Riverbend Malt House helps breweries and distilleries large, small, and in-between stand out with flavor, locality, and community in an increasingly competitive landscape— all the while challenging the status quo of corporate, big-agriculture malt. 

Contact Emily Hutto at hutto@radcraftbeer.com with media inquiries about Riverbend Malt House. 


YQH is a family-owned business focused on quality and service. Founded in 2013, Yakima Quality Hops provides the highest quality hops to breweries throughout the United States and abroad. Based in Yakima, WA, we work directly with growers, allowing us to offer the best pricing and quality control. We work with breweries of all sizes and in all stages of growth. Whether you’ve been brewing for decades or are just getting started, let’s connect so we can get to know your hops needs. Learn more at yakhops.com.

Riverbend Malt House debuted Double Kilned Munich this week as part of a new seasonal malt program to serve the varying needs of craft brewers and distillers in the Southeast region. This small-batch malt is available only while supplies last.

As its name suggests, Double Kilned Munich makes two trips through the kiln, a process that helps develop the complex flavors and increases color to approximately 50 SRM. “This was a fun and challenging project for our production team,” says Brent Manning, Riverbend’s Co-Founder who leads product development. “We experimented with a variety of different base malts, hydration regimes, and kilning recipes to arrive at this really special malt.”

Double Kilned Munich is malted from 2-row barley grown on family owned farms in the Southeast. This malt will contribute a beautiful, ruby red hue and notes of dark fruit and toffee with a touch of fresh roasted coffee to beers styles such as Czech Dark Lager, Baltic Porter, and winter seasonals.

“Double Kilned Munich performed well, tasted great, and served as a direct substitute for crystal or caramel malt,” says Chris Cates, Founder and Owner at Little Animals Brewery in Johnson City, Tennessee. “Its flavor impact leaned more towards rich malt flavor than it did towards sweetness. This is where it really shined, and what I would say made it stand out: minimal contribution to sweetness. Normally we have to source ‘specialty grain’ elsewhere, and then the beer can’t be advertised as ‘all local malt.’ Overall I really enjoyed the malt and will use it again.”

Contact your Riverbend Malt House representative or sales@riverbendmalt.com to place an order for Double Kilned Munich, and look for more seasonal malt varieties from Riverbend in 2023.

Contact Emily Hutto at hutto@radcraftbeer.com with media inquiries about Riverbend Malt House.

Brick Store Pub will host what might be Georgia’s largest consumer-facing showcase of craft malt to-date on September 20, featuring a tap takeover of 14 beers brewed with malt from Riverbend Malt House. 



Craft breweries across the Southeast have united to build this one-of-a-kind tap list that includes a wide array of beer styles made with Riverbend 6 and 2-Row barley varieties, wheat, rye, and corn malt in their grain bills. Participating breweries include Arches Brewing Co., Beacon Brewing Co., Bhramari Brewing, Cherry Street Brewing, Creature Comforts Brewing Co., Crooked Can Brewing Co., DSSOLVR, Hopstix, Mythk Brewing, NoFo Brew Co. & Distillery, Sceptre Brewing Arts, Sideward Brewing, Southern Brewing Co., and Trimtab Brewing Co.

Also of note at this event will be a presentation that covers a behind the scenes look at recent research and development projects at the malt house by Riverbend Malt House Co-Founder Brent Manning. This will include a hot steep demonstration of several new products. This talk begins at 3:30PM.

“This event allows beer lovers to experience first-hand the difference that artisanal malt makes on a beer’s flavor and aroma,” says Neil Callaghan, Beer Director for the Brick Store Pub.  “Many of our guests’ favorite breweries have been using Riverbend’s malted barley and grains for years, and with this event we can shine a spotlight on the ingredients that make these beers so wonderful.  We’re excited to showcase beers from some of Georgia’s most talented brewers and some out-of-state breweries not often poured in the state and raise a glass to Riverbend.”



Brick Store Pub

125 E Court Square

Decatur, GA 30030


Tuesday, September 20, 2022 

Craft malt presentation by Brent Manning at 3:30pm

Taps flowing at 6pm


Media interested in covering this event can contact Emily Hutto at hutto@radcraftbeer.com




Since 1997, the Brick Store Pub has been celebrating craft, community and culture to it’s Decatur, Georgia neighborhood.  With an internationally renowned beer program featuring thousands of vintage ales and lagers and a kitchen offering beer-inspired cuisine, the Brick Store Pub has carved a distinctive niche for itself over its quarter century history.  It is currently ranked as the #1 Beer Bar in North America by RateBeer.com and has been recognized by dozens of media outlets as an international beer destination.


On September 3, 2022 the Georgia Bulldogs will play the Oregon Ducks at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. StillFire Brewing in Suwanee, Georgia and Ninkasi Brewing in Eugene, Oregon have collaborated on a beer for the occasion.

You guessed it— that beer is #madewithRiverbend malt! Meet Duck Duck Dog. It’s an easy-drinking American Pale Ale that each brewery crafted with ingredients grown in Georgia and Oregon. Georgia peach wood wheat to be exact, to help the beer embody a sense of place via ingredients. Our malt complements the complex berry meets grapefruit in the woods character of the Strata hops selected to represent the Pacific Northwest in this collaboration.

Flash back to the early 2000’s. Memories are hazy on exactly when Founding Brewer at Ninkasi Jamie Floyd and Brewmaster at StillFire Brewing Phil Farrell met; it could have been judging homebrew competitions, maybe golfing in the annual Sasquatch Brew-Am, pouring at Oregon Brewers Festival, or perhaps hanging out at the Horse Brass Pub in Portland. “We always seemed to find each other and hang out when events happened.” says Floyd. “We also both love judging and helping with beer competitions, so we got to do those events together as the years passed.” 

Flash forward to the kickoff of the 2022 college football season, three years after Farrell launched StillFire across the country, and this continental craft beer relationship has flourished into a collaboration brewed to feature regional ingredients.

“We decided to brew a beer that would be very quaffable during the early weeks of football season and all the associated Labor Day weekend tailgating, and an American Pale Ale with a distinct hop profile fit the bill perfectly,” says Farrell. “We wanted to include ingredients that represented the home states of the two breweries.” 

In Oregon, taste Duck Duck Dog on tap at The Ninkasi Better Living Room, where you can watch the big game on the large projector screen.

Catch Ninkasi Co-Founder Jamie Floyd during his halftime simulcast from the stadium on September 3. 

August 16, 2022— Today Inc. named Riverbend Malt House number 2804 on the list of the 5000 fastest growing private companies in America. This achievement comes on the heels of a major facility expansion, which increased Riverbend’s malting capacity by more than 50 percent. 

The annual Inc. 5000 list is one of the most prestigious rankings of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies, representing top tier independent small businesses in America. Inc. 5000 status is conferred based upon a company’s cumulative revenue growth over the preceding three years. Since 2018, amid the global COVID pandemic, Riverbend has attained a revenue growth rate of 198 percent.

“This achievement is reflective of the relentless focus on product quality and customer service that the Riverbend team delivers day in and day out,” remarks Scott Hickman, Riverbend’s CEO. “We are truly grateful for the confidence placed in us by more than 250 brewing and distilling customers, which enabled us to qualify for this award.”

Riverbend’s inclusion in the Inc. 5000 list is not only positive for Riverbend, but for the craft malt industry as a whole, Hickman continues: “Sales growth of this magnitude is a proof point indicating that discerning brewers and distillers are increasingly realizing the importance of high quality ingredients and a locally sourced brand message for their product differentiation.”

A full list of winners including Riverbend Malt House can be found on the Inc.com website.

Contact Emily Hutto at hutto@radcraftbeer.com with media inquiries.

ASHEVILLE, NC– Riverbend Malt House announced that installation of its new 10 metric tonne Germination Kiln Vessel (GKV) was completed this week, with first malt production from the unit expected in coming weeks. This equipment complements a new 10 tonne steep tank which was installed earlier this year. Collectively, all of the new equipment in the Asheville-based malt house increases Riverbend’s overall craft malt production capacity by more than 50 percent. 

“Riverbend’s sales grew by more than 40 percent in 2021 and we don’t see that growth rate tapering in 2022,” noted Scott Hickman, Riverbend Malt House CEO. “This new equipment is a critical part of an effort to be prepared for anticipated demand.” 

Last year Asheville local Hillman Beer Company made the switch to Riverbend as their primary base malt provider, and that move has created consistency in an otherwise unstable supply chain. “It’s comforting as we celebrate our second year anniversary at our second location this week to know we’re going into our future with a great local partner who we can count on for consistency and quality,” says Co-Owner Brad Hillman. 

With more craft malt production for brewers and distillers comes increased purchasing of grain from local, family-owned farming partners, and the hiring of additional employees at above Living Wage levels. These implications fulfill Riverbend’s corporate charter embodied in the company motto, Malt with a Mission.

Contact Emily Hutto at hutto@radcraftbeer.com with media inquiries about Riverbend Malt House and its 2022 expansion. 


Donate to Ukrainian Refugees By Drinking This Beer.


That’s the purpose of our latest collaboration with Hi-Wire Brewing, and the simple and effective sentence also happens to be the name of the resulting pale ale that taps at all seven Hi-Wire taprooms beginning in the brewery’s three Asheville locations on Friday, April 29— and then rolling out to the remaining four taprooms in Durham, N.C., Knoxville, Tenn., Wilmington, N.C., and Louisville, Ky.

With Riverbend donating 100 percent of the malt and Hi-Wire brewing the beer, one dollar from every pint sold directly benefits refugees of Ukraine as facilitated by Asheville non-profit Svitla Nadiya – meaning “Bright Hope” in Ukrainian – an organization created specifically to direct funds and clothing to Ukranians who have been displaced by the current war with Russia.

Donate to Svitla Nadiya and learn more here. Read more about this effort on NC Beer Guys and MountainX.

Don’t miss our chat with Hi-Wire’s Luke Holgate about this beer, and what’s going on at Hi-Wire, here.


The first craft maltster in the Southeast, Riverbend Malt House, celebrated a decade in business by embarking upon a year-long campaign highlighting the cultivation, malting, and brewing of their 10th grain harvest. From said harvest Riverbend produced a specialty 10 Year Anniversary Malt, Sunset Wheat, that 15 world-class Southeastern breweries showcased in beers ranging from Hefeweizen to New England IPA. 

Overall, most of Riverbend’s growers reported high test weight and above average yields from the 2021 harvest, providing the malt house with sufficient raw material to consistently serve its 240+ brewery and distillery customers across the Southeast last year.

The darling of Riverbend’s 2021 specialty malt offerings was Sunset Wheat, Riverbend’s flagship Appalachian wheat with a warmer, Munich-style kilning regime that produced a nice mix of baking spice and toast character. This combination added depth and flavor to a wide range of  beer styles, inspiring professional brewers and homebrewers across the region. 

Ten years of harvest has come with many milestones for this trailblazing craft malt company.  Learn more about their sustainability initiatives and expanding production in Riverbend 10 Year Fact Sheet and the 2021 Riverbend Year in Review

Brent Manning, Riverbend’s Co-Founder, attributes the malt house’s growth to their commitment to quality, and their ever-strengthening relationships with farm partners. “All of this has allowed us to expand contracted acreage throughout our network and strengthen our commitment to Malt With A Mission,” he says.

As a finale to their 10 Year Harvest program, Riverbend will premiere its short film, #Riverbend10, on Earth Day, Friday April 22 via YouTube. 

Riverbend extends gratitude to their friends at the following breweries who expressed Sunset Wheat in these beers; and to their homebrew shop partners who offered this malt variety for sale. 

Bhramari Brewing Co., Obliterated Mind Rauchweizen

Crooked Can Brewing Co., Common Ground California Common

DSSOLVR, Blood of My Kin Dark English Mild

Fonta Flora, Bier de Riverbend Belgian Dark Strong Ale

Fullsteam, River Skating Winter IPA

Green Man Brewery, Riverbend10! Wheat Wine

Gypsy Road Brewing, Citra All The Way Down Hazy IPA

Kite Hill Brewing Co., Yule Love This Collaboration Winter IPA

Mason Jar Lager Company, Sunset Peach Tea Lager

Perfect Plain Brewing Co., Salt Wedge Oyster Saison 

Plankowner Brewing Co., Strange Bird IPA

Print Shop Beer Co., Decimation Double IPA 

Cellarest Beer Project & Standard Beer + Food collaboration, Sunset in Hirondella Hefeweizen

Harding House Brewery, Farm Hands Sweet Potato English Ale


Asheville Brewers Supply – Asheville, NC

Westside Bottle Shop – Athens,  GA

Riverbend Malt House was honored by the Craft Maltsters Guild with a bronze Malt Cup award for its Chesapeake Pilsner malt. The award was presented at the 2022 Craft Malt Conference.

2022 marks the fourth year of this prestigious awards program— often called the Great American Beer Festival® or the Oscars® of craft malt– that recognizes craft maltsters for the quality and consistency of their malt varieties. The program awards medals for three categories– Pilsen, Pale, and Pale Ale malt. Riverbend is proud to receive the bronze award in the Pilsen category for its Chesapeake Pilsner.

Chesapeake Pilsner is produced using 2-Row barley grown in Virginia. It was born from Riverbend’s custom craft malt program, designed to create a balanced mix of bread crumb and honeysuckle flavors and a light color that allows for inclusion across a wide range of styles. “This year’s crop of Violetta barley featured plump kernels with low protein, perfect for creating a low color malt with high extract” says Brent Manning, Riverbend’s Co-Founder. “Our customers have incorporated it into a wide variety of lager and farmhouse recipes, and feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.”

One of those customers, Elation Brewing in Norfolk, Virginia, recently went all in on Riverbend as their primary malt provider. “I attribute the cracker-y, crisp flavors in our flagship Larchmont Lager to Chesapeake Pilsner malt,” says Bob Sweeney of Elation.

“Every pound of material in this building has been evaluated for sensory evaluation,” adds Riverbend Co-Founder Brian Simpson. After ten years we’re not just selling local, we’re selling the highest quality, most consistent malt we’ve ever made.”

To place an order of the award-winning Chesapeake Pilsner or any other of Riverbend’s malts for brewers and distillers, email orders@riverbendmalt.com.

Contact Emily Hutto at hutto@radcraftbeer.com with media inquiries.

Riverbend Malt House is coming off of a record year in business that included significant production and footprint expansion, increased recycling and waste reduction, and a celebration of their last decade in the craft malt business, among other community milestones. Here is the Riverbend Malt House’s 2021 Year in Review.


In 2021, Riverbend Malt House added a 10-tonne Germination Kiln Vessel (GKV) unit to its production facility in June. This state-of-the-art equipment increased the overall malthouse capacity by 40 percent, enabling Riverbend to meet growing demand for craft malt among breweries and distilleries throughout the Southeast.

Throughout the year, Riverbend malted 2.6 million pounds of 14 varieties of malt, which included 20 tons of malt with 12 different flavor combinations for specialty projects.


In 2021, Riverbend proudly expanded its agricultural and sales footprints across its home state of North Carolina, as well as sourcing grain from South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia, and Washington DC to meet industry demand for high quality craft malt that adds value and locality to craft beer and spirits made across the region. 272 breweries and distilleries purchased Riverbend craft malt last year, of which more than a third are new to the malt house’s customer base.

Environmental Commitment

In August, Riverbend announced the achievement of a recycling milestone of 100,000 pounds of rootlet material repurposed for use by nearby cattle operations. This recycling effort is one of many sustainability initiatives that Riverbend supports. Additional environmental initiatives  include electricity and natural gas consumption tracking, composting, and solid waste management.

Over the course of the year, Riverbend reduced its carbon emissions per pound of malt produced by 3.3%, composted eight tons of organic waste in partnership with the WNC Brewery Recycling Co-op, and redirected approximately 140,000 pounds of waste from landfill in 2021. “Now that the co-op is up and running, we hope to expand our efforts with customer pickup at select accounts during 2022,” says Riverbend Co-Founder Brent Manning. “We’ll work to increase efficiency with new equipment and expand our composting efforts as well.”

Read Riverbend’s full sustainability commitments report for 2021 here.

Events & Community 

In partnership with Asheville Greenworks and French Broad Chocolate, Riverbend helped to collect 3,000 pounds of garbage from the Swannanoa River. This effort will continue in 2022.

Riverbend was excited to participate in the South by Northwest collaboration with Skagit Valley Malting. In this exploration of Washington and North Carolina malt terroir Riverbend created two SMaSH (single malt and single hop) malt-forward pale ales brewed identically at DSSOLR in Asheville, North Carolina and Terramar Brewstillery in Edison, Washington. Both craft beers featured the experimental hop HBC 586 with the only variable being the base malt— both 2-row winter barley varieties grown in North Carolina and in the Skagit Valley.

Awards & Accolades 

Riverbend was proud to earn Living Wage Certified Employer status from Just Economics, the largest voluntary living wage certification in the nation. All 17 of Riverbend’s employees are compensated at or above the living wage rate established by Just Economics for Buncombe County.

Throughout the year, many of Riverbend’s customers were recognized with medals from multiple awards programs for beers made with Riverbend malt– including the Great American Beer Festival®, the U.S. Beer Open, the North Carolina Brewers Cup, and the National Honey Board Honey Beer Competition, among others. Congratulations to these producers for their commitment to quality that begins in the ground.

10 Year Harvest 

Riverbend worked with family farms across the Southeast to produce its highest quality and highest yielding harvest yet. This 10 year harvest included the Sunset Wheat, a Munich-style offering developed to celebrate this milestone. Professional and homebrewers across the Southeast made specialty beers with this wheat variety in commemoration, and continue to do so into 2022.