Tampa Bay brewery boom

2012 saw the debut of several local breweries — including these five favorites.

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Doug Dozark

Photo: Todd Bates

Cycle Brewing

Peg’s Cantina, 3038 Beach Blvd. Gulfport, 727-328-2720. Tasting room to open soon at 534 Central Ave., St. Petersburg.

Brewer: Doug Dozark

Doug Dozark, 31, started giving samples of his homebrews to customers at his parents’ restaurant, Peg’s Cantina, over five years ago. In 2009, his passion became his profession; the Cantina got its brewpub license, so he started making beer there and working the bar on the weekends, and he got a full-time job working at Cigar City Brewing through its infancy, growing pains and expansions. Last year he left CCB to focus on his own venture, Cycle Brewing, and any day now he’ll be opening a tasting and brewing spot by that name in downtown St. Pete.

Well-trained in both beer and business, he’s sincere about bringing good brews to the people.

“You need to know what a bad day feels like," says Dozark. "You need to see your dedication and desire really tested.”

Dozark exudes both qualities on a recent Sunday morning around 8 a.m. Brewing a batch of Freewheel, Cycle’s flagship ale, he describes a clear vision of what he wants Cycle Brewing to be.

“We want to be the local brewery,” Dozark. “I’m not interested in bottles or six-packs. It’s not about volume for me.”

In addition to his downtown St. Pete outpost, keep an eye out for Dozark’s BrewBus, a 1972 VW Bus complete with taps. And watch for Cycle’s Tang and Biscuits beer to be sold at St. Pete’s shuffleboard court (where he and his wife got married).

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