Saturday, December 7, 2013

Mixing Coal & Beer Can Be Tasty

Out running errands today, Hubs and I stopped by this place.....

First trip down the mountain to a tiny microbrew called Coal Breaker Brewery housed in an old Catholic church and rectory near Laurel Run outside of Wilkes-Barre.
If you know coal mining history you know about the LAUREL RUN Underground Mine Fire.  That one predates your Centralia Underground Mine Fire Judy by 47 years.

Here's your words of wisdom for the day......never buy a house that sits over coal mines because some day they will be abandoned and subside or some fool will locate a dump in an abandoned strip mine and another fool will cause a fire in the dump to ignite a vein of coal and that sucker will burn until forever.
Just sayin'.....

Anyway, back to the Microbrewery....
They are awaiting their pub license so just have a tasting room and you can fill your growlers for home enjoyment.

Interesting brews and Hubs filled 2 Growler-ettes today.
Beer brews are named for the history of coal mining in the region.

5 Whistle Wheat
Black Diamon Dark IPA
Olde King Coal Stout

They have a Chocolate and Cherry Porter concoction in the fermenter tanks now.....sounds interesting to me!

There's a write up on them HERE.
Like 'em on Facebook HERE

They hope to be open with a kitchen before the end of the year.
We'll be back....



  1. Yes but our Centralia fire is sooo much I am not only from Centralia I'm from Ashland also. My family were coal crackers before coal crakin was cool :)

    1. Laurel Run(Red Ash Coal Mine)is the oldest and Centralia is the most well known but there are 34 OTHER underground mine fires in PA still burning. It blows my mind. Luckily, no mining around my town, it was considered wilderness back when Coal was King. 8-)

    2. Sadly Centralia could have been contained and capped in the government had wanted to assist before it destroyed a whole town :( MIne fires were always a big scare

  2. Ok, I'll bite - what's a growler? I have learned something new today - I didn't know there were coal mines on fire underground - that sounds so freaking DANGEROUS!! If they can cap an oil pipe deep under water in the Gulf of Mexico why can't they put out those fires??

    1. A growler is a glass or earthenware jug used to transport beer you buy from a craft brewery to your home. To cut costs small brewery don't bottle their beer as bottling adds to the cost, so they sell you beer in these containers....also some people think "fresh" beer tastes better.

      How the term was coined from the Beer Advocate site...."In the late 1800s and early 1900s, fresh beer was carried from the local pub to one's home by means of a small-galvanized pail. Rumor has it that when the beer sloshed around the pail, it created a rumbling sound as the CO2 escaped through the lid, thus the term "growler" was coined."

      As for the mine fires.....between arsonists setting fires and accidents with mining lanterns(open flame)over the centuries fires have started. The mining co. are suppose to contain and extinguish any fires but over the years, companies have gone out of business/bankrupt so they don't get around to putting fires sometimes and there is no recourse against them since they are bankrupt.
      In Centralia, the fire was caused by an old strip mine being used as a trash dump and trash was burned, catching some coal in the vein on fire, which spread because it was discovered right before Easter weekend and those local govt. officials decided to wait until after the Holiday weekend to take action and by then it was too late, the fire had spread too far underground. The federal govt. finally was pushed to try to contain the fire but each attempt was too little too late and they never got ahead of the fire....but spent millions of $s anyway on failed attempts.
      The Red Ash Co. mine fire near me stared b/c a worker left his lantern in the mine at quitting time on a Friday in 1912 and the lantern caught supporting timbers on fire, which in turn spread to the coal in the tunnel.
      A mine fire is very hard to put out once it's been going because the shafts(tunnels going to the surface)feed the oxygen the fire needs to continue burning, a long burning fire as it burns the coal rock makes the tunnels unstable and liable to collapse on anyone in there trying to extinguish a fire. Plus the sulfur fumes given off by the coal burning build up in the tunnels and can kill swiftly so no one wants to be down there putting fires out.
      The coal rock burns in tunnels but then expands into rocks deep behind the tunnel walls so one of these fires can spread into areas where you can't get to it to extinguish it.
      The town of Ashland, which is next to Centralia in another 50 yrs will be threatened by the Centralia mine fire as the coal vein goes under that town and the fire is slowly burning toward that town. It's a slow spread but as the coal rock burns, subsidence(holes opening up in the ground where rock has burned...think like a sink hole)will start occurring there.
      And just think, there are 35 other fires in mines in PA.

  3. A growler is a glass jug you can fill with beer to take home with you. Craft Breweries have really taken off here in Alabama now that some of the prohibition era laws have been changed. And Sluggy, seriously try out that Cherry and Chocolate Porter -- the ones I've had from other breweries have been really good!

  4. I learn the most interesting things from you!

    Moravian Stars

    I can't wait to see what new thing you introduce to me!


Hey there! Thanks for leaving a comment.
All Anonymous commentors will be deleted.
Please include your name in your comment, or choose the 'Name' option and put your name or whatever you call yourself, in the box. Thank you.

Though I moderate it's partly to keep trolls at bay but also partly so that I read every comment. I don't often respond to comments so if you need me to answer you please write me at my email addy posted on my "About Me" page, linked on the side bar.