Flying Bison Brewing Company - Rusty Chain

Flying Bison Brewing Company - Rusty Chain

Beer Club featured in U.S. & International Variety Beer Club U.S. Microbrewed Beer Club


United States

Alcohol by Volume:


Flying Bison Brewing Company - Rusty Chain

  • ABV:

  • Int’l Bittering Units (IBUs):

  • Serving Temperature:

    40-45º F
  • Suggested Glassware:

    Pint Glass, Mug, or Stein
  • Malts:

    2 Row Pale, Weyermann Pils, MFB Vienna, CMC Munich 10, MFB Caramel, Munich 60, Best Caramel Pils, Carafa Type III
  • Hops:

    German Tettnang, German Magnum
Brewed in the Vienna Lager style, but using a hybrid lager/ale yeast, Flying Bison advertises this brew as a “Vienna style amber beer.” Expect a ruddy amber color on the pour with nice clarity and a sizable head that drops some light lace as it recedes. We really enjoyed the nose on this beer, with toasty malt aromas leading the way along with light notes of caramel. Look for a touch of white grape juice and a bit of spicy and somewhat floral hops. There’s an earthy and sweet impression, and a wisp of cinnamon if you look for it, too. The flavor profile features some nice toasted, bready, malt notes with a hint of cocoa powder. The German hops provide a pleasantly bitter counter to the malt core. A bit sweet upfront, this brew dries out nicely in the crisp finish with a touch of spicy hops. Try with German weisswurst ("white sausage") served with sweet mustard and rye bread, or baked ham and mac & cheese. Prost!

When the Flying Bison Brewing Company opened for business in April of 2000, it established itself as Buffalo’s first stand-alone brewery since Iroquois Brewing shut down in 1972. The company, whose name pays homage to Buffalo’s history of aviation manufacturing, was started by Tim Herzog and Phil Internicola, two well-regarded home brewers with about 35 years of combined experience. Additionally, Tim (a Certified Beer Judge) had studied brewing at the famed Siebel Institute and the American Brewers Guild and interned with three separate breweries in California, Oregon, and Ontario. Phil was an award-winning home brewer with experience in industrial production management – a handy skill to have when running a brewery.

The business incorporated in 1995, but a serious of obstacles, red tape, and the loss of original partner “Red” Mrozek to a motorcycle accident delayed the launch of the brewery for five years. Originally a 20-barrel brewery distributing only in kegs to local draft accounts, the business grew steadily over the next few years. Several 40-barrel fermenters were added, as well as a bottling line in 2004, which allowed Flying Bison to reach an even wider audience by distributing their packaged beer to local retail establishments like Wegmans Food Markets.

Unfortunately, in early 2010 Flying Bison found itself on the rocks, and brewing was halted due to financial problems attributed to rising production costs. A sale to Utica, NY’s Matt Brewing Company saved the business but was a controversial move, causing a rift among some of Flying Bison’s investors. Happily for the brand’s many fans, the beer returned to the taps and retail shelves. Terms of the sale require production to stay in Buffalo, maintaining the founders’ commitment to fostering a return of great craft beer to their city. These days, Phil serves as brewmaster at Buffalo’s Pearl Street Grill & Brewery and Tim Herzog remains with Flying Bison.

For more info about Flying Bison and brewery tours, visit them at, or call (716) 873-1557.

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