02 May Your Indiana Canned beer Guide for the Indy 500
It’s May in Indianapolis and that means race month at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway! Race fans will converge on the Circle City during the month to watch practice, time trails and qualifying leading up to the 98th running of the Indianapolis 500 and the Inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis.
The IMS allows spectators to bring their own beer to the race. They do have rules about carry in beverages and coolers. From the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Spectator Regulations:
- Coolers are permitted but size is restricted to no larger than 18 inches by 14 inches by 14 inches; coolers may be hard- or soft-sided.
- Purses, backpacks and other bags are permitted. Size is not to exceed 18 inches by 14 inches by 14 inches.
- Food and beverages are permitted, but no glass containers of any kind are allowed.
What better beer to bring to the race than locally brewed Indiana canned craft beer? Here are some suggestions from Indiana On Tap.
Flat 12 Bierwerks in Indianapolis produces Hinchtown Hammer Down, a Golden Ale named for James Hinchcliffe. Race fans know Hitch as the driver of the #27 Go Daddy.com car for Andretti Autosport. Hitch is started from the front line at the 500! How can you not drink his beer if you’re rooting for Hinch?! Check the Flat 12 website to learn where to find it! Flat-12 Bierwerks itself is named for the famed turn of the century Flathead or “Flat-12” cylinder engine.
Cutters Brewing Co. in Avon Indiana is also connected to the race this year as a supporter of the CuttersRT car, “The People’s Race Car.” CutterRT is one of the sponsors of Josef Newgarden’s #67 car for Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing. Cutters Brewing created a beer in honor of CuttersRT called the Redline Amber. While they don’t can Redline Amber, you can enjoy one of their year round beers at the race. We recommend their Lost River Blonde.
Daredevil Brewing in Shelbyville Indiana has just begun construction of new brewery and taphouse in Speedway, just 5 blocks from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway at 1151 W. Main Street. The brewery and taphouse should be fully operational before the 100th running of the Indy 500 in 2016. Until then, enjoy their Lift Off IPA in cans at this year’s race!
Sunlight Cream Ale, from Sun King Brewing in Indianapolis, is a perennial local favorite and 2010 World Beer Cup Silver Medal winner. This is their most approachable beer and has a smooth malt profile and a crisp, clean finish.
While not available in cans, Oaken Barrel Brewing Co. in Greenwood Indiana produces a local favorite Snake Pit Porter, named for the famed turn three infield of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Oaken Barrel is celebrating their 20th Anniversary this summer. Check them out before or after the race!
Finally, another relatively new option for craft beer lovers is 32 oz plastic half growlers (sometimes called “howlers” or “bullets”). Most of the Indianapolis breweries and brewpubs will sell you a plastic half growler full of any one of their beers. These 32 oz. containers are smaller and more portable than traditional 64 oz. growlers, do not violate the IMS prohibition on glass, and if purchased from the brewery, can be bought on Sundays! Check out our directory of Indiana breweries to find out abut all of the Indianapolis area breweries. Also, the Tomlinson Tap Room located in the historic Indianapolis City Market downtown offers half growlers from their 16 taps full of only Indiana craft beer.
You can’t go wrong with any of the Indiana brewed and canned blonde ales, pilsners or wheat ales listed below for a hot day at the track! Don’t forget, Indiana prohibits Sunday carry-out alcohol sales, so pick up your beer on Saturday! Also, cold beer is only available from liquor stores, not from groceries or convenience stores.