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A devotee of artisanal brews tries his hand at making his own

Doug Dozark holds a Dancing Cody, which he brewed at Peg’s Cantina in Gulfport and named after a dancing-averse kitchen staffer.


Doug Dozark holds a Dancing Cody, which he brewed at Peg’s Cantina in Gulfport and named after a dancing-averse kitchen staffer.

GULFPORT — Doug Dozark, 27, knows what he likes. He likes hops. He likes India pale ales, imperial stouts and other herbal, grassy, aggressively hoppy beers. Well, he also likes unfiltered wheat beers, fruit lambics and, as he says, "beers where people are trying to push the limit and are adding interesting things."

He has lovingly built the beer list at his parents' quirky Peg's Cantina. And now, in true DIY style, he's brewing his own. He started tinkering about a year and a half ago, experimenting with three extract beers (this is a beer made from malt extract as opposed to all grain; his first was an imperial stout, then a pale ale and a German wheat beer), making 3 gallons at a time. As with many new brewers, he devoured Charlie Papazian's The New Complete Joy of Home Brewing, having a wipeout now and again to keep him humble.

At the end of March he began selling his brews at Peg's (after obtaining the proper brew pub license from the state). For now it's one at a time due to refrigeration constraints, and no growlers or off-site sales allowed.

Dozark is interning at Joey Redner's Cigar City Brewing in Tampa, but experimenting at Peg's with a range of styles. Thus far he has brewed a Belgian wit (a white beer made with raw unmalted wheat, as opposed to the malted wheat used in other varieties); "El Jefe," a classic fruity hefeweizen with a lush banana nose; and an unnamed (he's open to suggestions) dark brown ale.

We stopped in a couple of times recently to taste. The brown was our favorite: A short, light brown head and mild carbonation let us focus on the chocolate/coffee/toffee flavors and creamy texture. We missed out on the Dancing Codys IPA (named after a dancing-averse kitchen staffer), but caught a delicious Roasted Red, its coppery color nearly as appealing as its roasty maltiness and spry hoppy finish.

"I'm still mastering my ingredients," says Dozark. "But I want to stay involved in the beer community here. The craft brewer market is growing, but there's a lack of brewed beer in this state."

Laura Reiley can be reached at or (727) 892-2293. Her blog, the Mouth of Tampa Bay, is at

. If You Go

Peg's Cantina

3038 Beach Blvd., Gulfport

(727) 328-2720

Hours: 4:30 to 10 p.m. Tuesday to Friday, noon to 10 p.m. Saturday

Details: No credit cards, but there is an ATM on-site; reservations not necessary; beer and wine

Prices: Food $4 to $15; Doug's beers $4 to $5

Booze Cruise

An all-ages local bar crawl with all participants riding cruiser boards on the streets of Ybor, Channelside and downtown Tampa. Stops include Rock-N-Sports, Hooters and the Hub. No special safety equipment required. Proof of ID required for drinking. 6 p.m. Fri. Rock-N-Sports Bar & Grille, 1600 E Eighth Ave., Suite E200, Ybor City. Free (food and drink extra). (813) 621-6783, ext. 209.

"Beer & BBQ"

Grill & Chill summer series pairs barbecue cuisine with handcrafted ales and beers from around the world. Features grilled mangrove snapper, smoky mustard shrimp with French and Australian brews. 6:30-8:30 p.m. today. SideBern's, 2208 W Morrison Ave., Tampa. $45. (813) 258-2233.


Pace yourself! Sample brews from Cigar City Brewing including Gordon Biersch and others at this daylong Spring Beerfest. Also, food available, a benefit raffle, cigar rolling and music. 2 p.m.-3 a.m. Sat. Tank's Tap Room, 13150 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa. No cover, free beer sampling, charge for other drinks and menu items. (813) 961-2337.

A devotee of artisanal brews tries his hand at making his own 05/20/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 20, 2009 8:55am]
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