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Craft Beer Scene Expands in Southern Nevada

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Steve Helber/AP

Craft beer showed up on the Las Vegas scene a few years ago, and it’s still growing.

Breweries are popping up, as are festivals that celebrate it.

Howard Samber with the newly opened Pub 365 at the Tuscany Hotel and Casino told KNPR's State of Nevada that 10 years ago there were only five or six breweries in Las Vegas now it's closer to 13. 

“It’s been great to see within the last five, six years seeing what some of the craft breweries have done out here,” he said.

According to the Brewers Association there are 34 craft breweries in Nevada, putting the state 33rd in the nation. California is number one with more than 500.  

Samber said there are still people that come into his pub looking for a Coors Light or Bud Light, but his top sellers are two local brews: the Joseph James Lager and the Tenaya Creek Pilsner. 

Lee Flint with Motley Brews, which puts on the Great Vegas Beer Festival every year, credits the owners of CraftHaus brewery in Henderson for helping pave the way for more craft brewing places.

The owners worked with the city to change some of the rules and fees for setting up a brewery. However, both Flint and Samber said changes to production caps for both brew pubs and production breweries would help the industry grow even more.

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Because the industry is still growing, it hasn't developed its own signature Las Vegas style brew. But there is a lot experimenting going on, Flint said. 

“There's all these different kinds of beers that breweries are feeling free to experiment with, and they are not as shackled to the one style that some of the California based breweries might tend to be,” he said. 

Resources:

Motley Brews

Beer Advocate: Las Vegas, Nevada beer guide

Brewers Association

Guests

Lee Flint, production director, Motley Brews; Howard Samber, food & beverage manager, PUB 365, Tuscany Suites & Casino