O'Connor Brewing Company


By in Blog Comments Off on American Craft Beer Week 2017

American Craft Beer Week 2017

American Craft Beer Week takes place this year from May 15 to May 21, and as always we have a jam-packed week put together for you to better enjoy our tasty, local craft beer…

***Special pins and experimental randalls all week!***

Monday, 5/15 Military Monday

Tuesday 5/16 Taco Tuesday with Karnage Asada

Wednesday 5/17 Ghent Your Game On: Game Night with Video Game Heaven 6-9pm + Get Stuffed

Thursday 5/18 Growler Fill Thursday + Rustic Roots Gourmet

Friday 5/19 Firkin Friday + All About the Cheese

Saturday 5/20 Chrysler Museum Glass Studio Mug Club 10am + Pickin’ On the Porch: Live Music with Brackish Water Jamboree & Friends + BBQ by Malbon’s Flying Pig

Sunday 5/21 Beermosa Brunch with Rustic Roots Gourmet & Sugar Shack Donuts 12-7pm + Sensible Seafood Fest Kickoff Celebration with Capt’n Crabby & Rustic Roots Gourmet 1-4pm

By in Blog Comments Off on Link Up and Drink Up with OBC and the Think Tank Society

Link Up and Drink Up with OBC and the Think Tank Society


From the big boss man to the bar back, the bottling line workers to the bean counter, and the beertenders to the brewers, we at O’Connor Brewing Company want to nurture the creative spirit that got us into craft brewing in the first place.

The Think Tank Society is the manifestation of this spirit.

We will be offering every staff member the opportunity to be creative in coming up with ideas for new brews and following through by actually helping brew them on our test batch system, “The Think Tanks.”

This is a very exciting time for us here at the brewery for many reasons, but mainly (for me, at least) it is a chance to offer a new and exciting product and to hear what you think. As members of the Society, you will be a direct link to our entire fan base. You will be giving us critical feedback on the new beers, and we will decide (based on what you tell us) which beers will be scaled up into full production. Who knows, maybe you will help us decide if a beer is to be the next year round offering!

With that said, we could not be where we are without you. I would like to extend my gratitude and raise my glass to you and craft beer lovers everywhere.


Bob, OBC Production Manager

Click here to purchase your membership to the Think Tank Society.

Click here to check out all the Think Tank Society perks and FAQs.


By in Blog Comments Off on Backyard Bonfire Smoked IPA – another summer pleaser!

Backyard Bonfire Smoked IPA – another summer pleaser!

I have long been a firm believer in the saying “there’s a beer for every occasion”. So when summertime came along and the hop vines started growing and friends were having cookouts, it seemed only fitting to find a way to encompass these occasions in a beer. Backyard Bonfire was that beer. It first started as a homebrew using hops grown in my backyard with a pleasant amount of smoked malts to give a unique and rather graceful blend perfect for sharing with friends and family.

We at O’Connor Brewing have taken this idea and recipe to create a wonderfully unique beer to offer to all of our guests. Keeping with the backyard theme of this beer we received a little help from our friends at Copper Fox Distillery in Sperryville, VA who supplied us with cherry and apple-wood smoked malts. These wonderful malts give a beautiful smokey character that pairs extremely well with the fruit notes found in the Citra, Mosaic, and Sorachi Ace hops. The perfect beer for that gathering of friends and family around the bonfire showcasing the fruits of our labor here in VA. Cheers!

Written by Nick Curtis – Shipping & Receiving Manager, Chef, Homebrewer, and all around Great Guy.

Come join in the fun for the Backyard Bonfire Smoked IPA release this Friday, June 12th from 4-8pm!  It’s smokin good!!


By in Blog Comments Off on 40 Mile to the Border

40 Mile to the Border


When I think of breweries doing collaborations I think about off the wall, over the top, out of the box ideas that sometimes work and sometimes don’t. A lot of times they feature an obscure ingredient, are a big bold creation, or are birthed in some marketer’s daydream and become reality. Other times they are between friends, who just want to have fun and work together. This collaboration was born in a meeting between the brewers here at O’Connor Brewing Company discussing who they thought made some of the best beer in Virginia. The first place that came to my mind was Three Notch’d Brewing Company in Charlottesville. When I found them, they had not been open a year and there was already a good buzz (pun intended) going about their beers. I lived (fortunately) within walking distance of the brewery, so I would make evening pilgrimages down to the tap room to see what was new while still remaining faithful to my go to, Jack’s Java. I was always impressed with Three Notch’d as a whole, good atmosphere, good people, and great beer. When Kevin said to reach out to them, I literally ran to my desk eager at the chance to work with such a solid brewer, Dave Warwick. Being a self-proclaimed collaboration junkie, Dave seemed to be as excited about working together as I was. He came down for a visit to Norfolk and we bounced around a few ideas, nothing seemed to jump out right away. He then mentioned an idea that was stewing in his mind for a while, “What if we took two existing beers and made them into one new beer?” Maybe it was the fact that he had wanted to do it for some time, or maybe he was waiting for the right handsome fellow to come around. Thus “40 Mile to the Border” was created, a melding of their flagship IPA “40 Mile” and ours “El Guapo.” The result is a tasty brew showcasing the fruity character of the El Dorado hop and the sweet, slightly spicy character of agave. We hope you enjoy (responsibly) this creation as much as we have enjoyed creating it for you.

40 Mile to the Border Release is this Friday, June 5th at the brewery from 4-8pm.  Come out and meet the brewers from Three Notch’d and The OBC who created this awesome beer!  Cheers.

By in Blog Comments Off on O’Connoroo and Spyhop: The Perfect Pair

O’Connoroo and Spyhop: The Perfect Pair

OConnoroo2015 TshirtOBC’s Spyhop White IPA has been a summer favorite of employees and customers since we first brewed it three years ago at our old place.  It was only by cool coincidence  that we released it for the second time on the first day we opened our doors to our new spot last May to the beer-drinking public.

So before I talk about about Spyhop, let me explain O’Connoroo – the annual OBC festival around this delicious beer.   Last year, as some of you know, we named the grand opening of our new brewery “O’Connoroo” – it rang and we wanted to call it something happy, festive, and fun – so there you go.  But we also wanted it to be the namesake of what we hope to be a long and  beautiful tradition.

So when we started planning O’Connoroo 2015 and what beer we wanted to release on this weekend, the answer was pretty obvious:  our beloved Spyhop White IPA!  Of course, it had to be: we released it at O’Connoroo last year by coincidence, it’s a great summer beer, and who doesn’t love a cute, psychedelic whale popping out of the ocean with hops bursting all around it?  Yeah!! So we are happy to say that the Spyhop whale is the official mascot of O’Connoroo.  So let the games begin, let the music rock, and let the beer flow.  We welcome all of you who share the love of good beer, good music, and good vibes to come and join in the fun of O’Connoroo this Saturday and Sunday.

A few parting housekeeping items:  This year’s O’Connoroo is open to the public and there is no cover charge this year.  We will be pouring 6 new summer seasonals in addition to our flagships and will have double the beer-pouring stations as last year! The music lineup is killer with 4 bands Saturday and 3 on Sunday.  We’ll have cornhole, shuffleboard, and jenga for you game lovers and even some shade for you fair-skinned folk.  We’ll also have plenty of food trucks and a taxi stand.  As far as parking goes, you can park anywhere in the industrial park around us or you can park in Ghent and take a short walk to 211 W. 24th Street.  Hours are: 12-9 Saturday, 12-6 Sunday.  For more details please follow this link: https://www.facebook.com/events/384820451702917/.

We feel honored and humbled to share in our new annual tradition: O’Connoroo and the release of our Spyhop White IPA.  We hope that we carry this tradition in the spirit of other great beer festivals in this country and create an annual pilgrimage of locals, beer-lovers, music-lovers and wanderlusts alike.  We look forward to seeing you at O’Connoroo!!  Cheers.



By in Blog Comments Off on Zephyrweisse Debut at OBC!

Zephyrweisse Debut at OBC!


As the warm winds approach, we have Zephyrus to thank. And just in time, we bring you the most refreshing “Zephyrweisse,” as an ode to the god of the west winds and bringer of refreshing weather.

Adhering to tradition we wanted a light, refreshing beverage, as golden as the rays of the sun.

Chloris, the goddess of spring and new beginnings, was given the domain of the flowers by Zephyrus. Together they created a beautiful young man named Karpos, which translates to fruit.

Tying all of these elements together, we have artfully crafted this brew to highlight bright fruit flavors, and a light refreshing body. With notes of white peaches and banana on the nose, and the spicy character of clove on the palate, this beer will quench your thirst on one of the many warm days to come.

Join us for the debut of Zephyrweisse this Friday, May 22, from 4-9pm. This beer contains 4% Alc. by Vol. and 18 IBUs, and it will only be available on draught. Click here for the Facebook event page.


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Stuff to Do This Weekend if You LOVE Great Beer and Good Times!

topgunEvery month or so our friends at AltDaily put on a cult classic movie screening at one of our favorite places in town, the Naro Cinema in Ghent. Even better–they always have an O’Connor beer bar to benefit the Muse Writers’ Center, another great Norfolk-based organization. For this month’s event, AltDaily is doing TOP GUN this Friday night at 9pm! So get ready for a hilarious time, punctuated by an epic singalong…

Movie tickets are about $9. Click here for the FB event page.

IMG_0073We had a great time at the recent Harrisonburg Capital Ale House’s Mesquite Challenge. If you missed it, get to Capital Ale House Midlothian on Saturday for the Copper Fox Brewfest & Mesquite Challenge. Nine Virgina breweries, including OBC!, teamed up with Copper Fox Distillery to create nine new beers EXCLUSIVELY for the event. This beer isn’t just any beer, though. Each brewery created their beer using a special ingredient: Copper Fox’s Mesquite Smoked barley malt.

Tickets are $20 and include the following:

– Entrance into the event
– A commemorative Copper Fox glass
– 9 taster tickets to sample every brew
– Opportunity to try some of Copper Fox’s whiskies and gins
– Live entertainment
– Opportunity to vote for your favorite brew with the chance to win a Barrel Kit from Copper Fox that you can use to age your own whisky

Click here for the FB event page.

As if Stockley Gardens Spring Arts Festival wasn’t already awesome enough, this year they’re adding an O’Connor beer garden! We’ve had a long, fruitful partnership with Hope House and this fantastic event, and we’re excited to be a part of it again. If you’ve never gone to Stockley (well, you must be new around here or are just completely avoiding Ghent), here’s the gist:

Twice a year, on the third full weekend in May and October, people flock to Stockley Gardens in Norfolk’s historic Ghent neighborhood to browse through jewelry, pottery, paintings, and other works of art by over 130 artists. The park is full of strollers and dogs and tantalizing smells. Music drifts from the stage. Friends stop to chat. And throughout the weekend, there is a feeling of hope.

Stockley Gardens Arts Festivals are events that are put on by Hope House Foundation and also benefit the organization. The proceeds from these events helps pay for housing, transportation, medical care, and more for adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities. But of course, the events themselves benefit the entire community.

Click here for the FB event page.

Even though they won’t be pouring OBC, the LAVA Music Festival is gonna be a kick-ass time! Headliners include Fitz and the Tantrums, Of Montreal and Mutemath. Just having that many cool acts play in SUFFOLK, VIRGINIA on the same day… well, we think that’s worth a shout-out. And since our friends at Devil’s Backbone are providing the beer, we can safely say you’ll still be drinking well, even without us on tap. 😉


Lastly, if you’re a Hampton Roads beer lover, you probably already know about the Virginia Beer Festival at Town Point Park, so we won’t bore you with the details. But this list of participating breweries (including OBC, of course!) may be of use:


Hope to see you out and about this weekend!

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Cinco de Maibock Release

It’s that time of year again! As we step out of hibernation and into spring, we also bring a special beer out of its own kind of hibernation, lagering, where it has had time to develop and mature.

“Cinco de Maibock” is our interpretation of a traditional German lager with a twist. Brewed using German malts and hops, our spin comes from south of the border. In the spirit of Cinco de Mayo, a hefty dose of agave nectar is added to spice things up a bit. 

Maibock, or Frühlingsstarkbier (spring strong beer) is just that, beer brewed for May. Traditionally brewed just before winter sets in, it is to be released in spring as a celebration of making it through the harsh winters of Bavaria. After the winter we just had, we saw it fit to brew something for the occasion. Thus, Maibock.

Like the lusty month of May, Maibock is a transitional brew that will entice you with its warming kiss. So come celebrate spring with us, and enjoy (responsibly) a “Cinco de Maibock” or two.


Bob Sweeney

Click here to visit the FB event page for the Bottle Release of Cinco de Maibock.


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IronClad Bourbon Barrel-Aged Porter Release

Ironclad Porter Banner

IroncladWhen we at OBC think of bourbon and oak barrels – we think South, we think gentleman, we think deeelicious!

As Mark Twain said: “Too much of anything is bad, but too much good whiskey is barely enough.” We couldn’t agree more!

Here’s the Wikipedia version of the history of bourbon (why try to write our own when theirs is already so… encyclopedic?): Bourbon whiskey is a type of American whiskey: a barrel-aged distilled spirit made primarily from corn. The name is ultimately derived from the French Bourbon dynasty, although it is disputed whether Bourbon County in Kentucky or Bourbon Street in New Orleans inspired the whiskey’s name.[1] Bourbon has been distilled since the 18th century.[2] The name “Bourbon” was not applied until the 1820s, and the Kentucky etymology was not advanced until the 1870s.[1] While the liquor may be made anywhere in the United States, it is strongly associated with the American South in general, and with Kentucky in particular.

So bourbon is, definitively, a southern thing – something we proudly and gladly relate to.  And when we we think of this Southern tradition, we also think, what OBC beer style can we confidently inject into these beloved southern vessels that will stand up to each other and bring out the best of both hand-crafted worlds?  Well, it’s been a long time coming, so we at OBC are excited to be launching our first bourbon barrel-aged beer – our Great Dismal (sans hops) aged in Good Ol’ Southern bourbon oak barrels.  So if you like a good porter and a good bourbon, this one’s for you.  We are extremely pleased with this marriage of dark roasted and caramel heat flavors and hope you will also be pleased with our first ever barrel creation.  So come and enjoy some truly delicious Southern gentleman barrel-aged beer from O’Connor this Friday, May 1st and while it lasts.

Image: OBC staff labeling bottles of the first Ironclad beer batch.

Click here to check out the FB event page for the Ironclad bottle release on Friday, May 1st.

Other upcoming events: