He became a household name amongst beer geeks in the state when J.D. Merryweather hired him to be Coop Ale Works first brewer. He left that position in September last year, and now hes about to launch his own brewery: Redbud Brewing Company.
Slated to begin distribution on Tuesday, Redbud will initially release two beers: Cuvée 1, a Belgian-style ale, and American pale ale, what Healey calls his session beer.
These beers are my creations, Healey said. Theyre every bit me. I think all brewers want that, for our beers to taste exactly the way we want them to.
The second release of Redbud beers will be Cuvée 2, which Healey expects sometime in March.
Im only using half the beer from a batch to make Cuvée 1, he said. The other half is aging in Jack Daniels barrels, and Ill release it as Cuvée 2.
The cuvée beers will only be available in six-packs of 12-ounce bottles. Healey said he wants to focus on liquor store distribution, not taps. McNellies Public House, 1100 Classen Drive, will feature Cuvée 1 as one of the featured beers in its upcoming Firkin Fridays promotion. The term firkin comes from an Old English unit of measurement that is often used in association with beer, ale or wine.
Jake Hickman, bar manager at McNellies, said his bar will have the American pale ale on draft as soon as its available.
We were able to taste the pale ale recently, Hickman said. Everyone raved about it. I will buy it the second its available. Chases commitment to crafting great beer was obvious the night we tasted it. With everyone raving about it, he still insisted he could do better. I admire that kind of determination and excellence.
Healey said The Abners Ale House, 121 E. Main in Norman, part of the McNellies family of pubs, and Republic Gastropub, 5830 N. Classen Blvd., will also have the pale ale on tap, but hes not sure what is beyond those three locations.
The goal is not to get as many taps as possible, in as many locations as possible, Healey said. Im going to make a beer, and if people like it, Ill keep making it. Ill also make cuvées, and if people like them, Ill make another one. There is no plan for x amount or for so many beers. We may have four to six locations with taps, but I really want to focus on liquor stores.
The Firkin Fridays will begin at McNellies in February. Hickman doesnt know which beer will be available on any particular week, but he said he believes Redbud will be the first month.
Were trying to get
kegs from all the local breweries that are interested, Hickman said.
We want to work with all the local brewers.
firkin is a small keg that only holds 72 pints, so anyone interested
will need to arrive early to taste the beers. Coop, Marshall Brewing
Company, Choc Beer and Redbud have already signed on. Hickman said
out-of-state breweries are interested as well, including Left Hand, a
These beers are my creations. Theyre every bit me.
is excited about debuting his Cuvée 1 on a Firkin Friday, primarily
because the beers will be hand-drawn on McNellies cask beer machine.
Beer aficionados know its the best way to drink beer.
allows you to drink beer when its at its freshest, Hickman said.
Using the hand-pulled cask means no nitrogen or CO2 affect the beers
taste. You get exactly what the brewer intended.
is currently leasing space from Rick Huebert, one of the microbrewery
pioneers in Oklahoma. Rick has been very helpful, Healey said. Not
only did he work to get laws changed in the state to allow strong beer
brewing, I feel like hes still helping brewers like me get our start in
now, Healey will focus on beers instead of space. He said it allows him
to start his business without a great deal of capital, and he thinks now
is a good time to start another local brewery.
chose the Redbud name because I want people to identify my beers with
all the great stuff thats happening in the state, he said. Its an
Oklahoma name, and I think what I love about craft beers is that they
reflect the region. Im proud of whats happening in Oklahoma City right
now, and I want Redbud to be part of that.