We've all heard the expression, "When life gives you too much rain, make beer from it." That's what Colin Crociati did, as the Commonwealth's first dedicated brewer of sour beer.

Sour as in tart and biting?

"Yes, it's almost like sour candy in a glass," Crociati said.

Crociati has been brewing sour beer for five years, and believes it's on the verge of becoming more popular by a growing and loyal fan base. If you're a lover of Sour Patch Kids and lemon Warheads candy, step right up! You can say this all started in the candy store, back when he was a kid and could down a pound of sour patch candy without a problem.

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For as long as he can remember, Crociati, of Plymouth, has had a romance for making beer.

"I found an old, fairly dilapidated brew kit at college, so the beer turned out absolutely awful, but it got me really excited. So, I've devoted my life to brewing," said Crociati, a UMass Dartmouth graduate who began his career working at four breweries, learning greatly from each one.

Crociati said that even though his life has been full of ups, there also have been a number of downs while he tried to pursue his dreams.

"In 2018, I was diagnosed with Stage 2 Hodgkin's lymphoma," he said. "I went through unimaginable pain with my chemotherapy, but with daily perseverance and assistance from my nurse, Hannah, I made it through the rain."

He even named this summer's pina colada-flavored brew after his nurse.

Getting there took money as well as perseverance to get off the ground. Sour Not Sorry put out a Kickstarter for $12,000, and met the goal.

"We also worked with the New Bedford area EforAll, and received the top prize of $3,000," Crociati said. "Today, Sour Not Sorry Brewers is completely funded by the passionate sour beer fans."

Courtesy Colin Crociati
Courtesy Colin Crociati

Operating from a 10 foot-by-12-foot converted shed in his parents' backyard, Crociati's success is forcing him to find a larger space to expand. He also serves as his own delivery service to bars, breweries and restaurants.

"The closest one near here would be No Joke Smoke BBQ in Swansea," he said.

It's a lot of work, but it's work Crociati is happy to put in each and every day.

"I wanted this dream all my life. It's motivated me on days when I needed to get up and do what I love the most – brew sour beer – because in the end, it's all about sour beer making you happy," he said.

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