By Bob Barnes
NHL Las Vegas Golden Knights star Ryan Reaves is not just a hockey luminary, he’s also co-owner of the local 7Five Brewing Company. True fans of his will instantly recognize the significance of the name, which is the number Reaves has worn throughout his hockey career.
Speaking of how his interest in beer developed, Reaves says, “I first got into beer when I was in St. Louis. Moving to Vegas, I got to become part of this amazing community and also saw that the craft beer scene here was still developing, so saw the opportunity … to give back to a city that’s given me so much.”
The company was founded three years ago by Reaves and his lifelong friend Adam Coates. They met in school when they were about 8 years old and immediately became fast friends.
Coates says, “We’ve always had similar interests and growing up we played sports together from football to hockey. I’ve worked in beer since the start of my career with Labatt Breweries of Canada and knew the ins and outs from sales to operations … and to get to work with Ryan was icing on the cake.”
The beers are brewed by Able Baker; the local brewery takes the ideas of Coates and Reaves and the flavors wanted and brings it to life.
7Five has released four beers and each tells a story. Coates explains, “Like the styles of the beer, the names go along with the stages of Ryan’s career and that of anyone aspiring to achieve greatness. Dawn Breaker (is a) drinkable lager that is the starting point of the journey, representing the late nights and early mornings needed to put in the work. Training Day, a golden ale that’s your introduction into the world similar to Ryan’s intro into the NHL—you’ve gotten to this next level, so enjoy it, but keep working hard while you get to know it.”
Of Shiver Giver, a bold Red IPA bursting with a hoppy flavor and aroma and a touch of malty sweetness for balance, Reaves says, “What does Shiver Giver mean? It’s about a feeling, really. The one you get when everything you’ve worked for, all the hustle, all the sweat, all the sacrifices, pay off. That moment that sends shivers down your spine. I’ve definitely had a few in my day, and man, it makes all that work worth it.”
Describing the sentiment behind their most recent beer, Grim Reaver, Reaves says, “It’s personal. We’re heading into battle. I’m in the Grim Reaver mentality. We’re channeling our greatness and are focused on the goal. It’s one of my favorites of all time, smooth and rich with notes of dark chocolate and roasted coffee.”
Coates concludes: “Grim Reaver is the final beer in the narrative that corresponds with Ryan’s career. But, while that storyline may end there, we’re definitely looking to do more in the future that will tie in with the other beers in the lineup.”
For a current list of where to find 7Five beers visit 7fivebrewing.com.