Even many North Texans are not yet familiar with the small town of Celina, TX but a new addition to the already formidable Dallas/Fort Worth area beer scene is doing their part to change this. This summer, Rollertown Beerworks and head-brewer, Tommy Miller, have begun slanging suds out of their brand-new facilities and we are excited to say that one of the new brewery’s four inaugural staples has even got some KLLR Coffee in it!
Celina is a rapidly growing town 40 miles north of Dallas. When it began, it was actually several miles away from where it is now and all of the town’s structures were moved to where they currently reside using large steam-engines, hence, the nickname – “Rollertown”. Why did they do this? Who knows! It’s a fun story though
The brewery was started in part by local radio hosts, Ben Rogers and Jeff “Skin” Wade whose popular show “Ben & Skin” has enjoyed time on ESPN Radio, The Fan, and now has a prime-time slot on 97.1 The Eagle.
For their brewing talent, they brought in local craft-beer hotshot Tommy Miller, who began his fascination with beer home-brewing with buddies while in the military stationed in Japan. While traveling the world with the Air Fore and as a Department of Defense contractor, Miller became infatuated with the different beer styles and cultures he experienced visiting breweries in each country he passed through. In the subsequent years he has brewed for reputable Dallas breweries including Deep Ellum Brewing, Lakewood Brewing, and Noble Rey.
Over the subsequent years, Miller’s love for what he does has only grown
“Brewing is a job that changes daily,” he explains. “You can create something new and modern or brew your best version of classic styles. I love the entire process of creating a recipe and seeing it poured fresh for our customers weeks later and getting their feedback and then doing it all over again.”
That enthusiasm stretches beyond the walls of his own brewery, as well
“The industry is packed full of amazing people from the hop/grain/fruit farmers to the people working the tap rooms,” Miller says. “The craft beer industry is a massive ecosystem so get to work with people from all over the world. From events, festivals, to craft beer conferences you are always learning and meeting new people, all while drinking great craft beer. It's hard to complain about this industry.”
For us at KLLR Coffee, those sentiments definitely ring true in regard to our own industry which is largely why we are so excited to partner with talented, like-minded folks like the crew at Rollertown.
Miller, a coffee enthusiast himself, agrees.
“I love coffee,” he exclaims. “I first started getting into coffee while working for a contractor in Afghanistan. I worked with a guy that was obsessed and would order amazing coffee from all over the world. We would do tastings and he taught me how to make a proper cup and I've been a huge fan ever since.”
For the KLLR Coffee X Rollertown Beerworks collaborative effort, War Daddy -named after the term the Dallas Cowboys’ Owner and General Manager, Jerry Jones, endearingly uses to refer to the pass-rushers on his defensive line- we’ve paired KLLR Coffee’s Guatemala Huehuetenango Waykan with a big 10% ABV stout from Rollertown, packed with loads of flaked and malted oats. This beer has got a thick, syrupy mouthfeel with notes of coffee, chocolate, vanilla, dried fruit, and just a hint of bitterness.
Why this coffee for this beer?
“I didn't want anything bitter,” explains Miller. “We get that from the hops. The Guatemala blend has string flavors of smooth chocolate and berries. The combination of chocolate malt, Cocoa nibs, and the KLLR Guatemala coffee pairs extremely well.”
Currently, the beer is available for consumption on the patio or in cans for takeaway. As a result of the COVID-19 bar shutdowns, the brewery has yet to hold its official grand-opening celebrations and, in fact, have had to cancel two taproom opening dates, the second one just 1-hour before the scheduled opening time.
Despite the setbacks, the local community has rallied around the new brewery, which sold-out its supplies each weekend for weeks in a row. In fact, the brewery is already expanding, adding six new horizontal tanks that will double their capacity and allow them to focus on expanding the variety of lager styles they brew, which is what they love the most.
And if you’re wondering how the customers have responded to a big, high-ABV stout – often reserved as a winter-time seasonal – in the middle of a hot Texas summer…
“People love it,” says Miller. “I don't think there is a wrong time of the year to drink a big chocolatey vanilla and coffee stout.”
Check out the clip below to see KLLR and Rollertown enjoying the fruits of this collaboration together and if you find yourself in North Texas, swing by Rollertown and ask for the War Daddy!