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Bold City Brewing Beer To Help Restore Cummer Gardens

Jacksonville’s Bold City Brewery is preparing a beer inspired by the Cummer Museum’s gardens, and planning to give the museum a portion of the sales for garden restoration.

The name of the beer: Avant Gardener.

Credit Cummer Museum of Arts & Gardens
Among the casualties of Hurricane Irma’s storm surge in Jacksonville are the historic gardens at the riverfront Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens. This photo was taken days after the storm.

The historic gardens at the riverfront Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens were heavily damaged by Hurricane Irma’s storm surge in September. Storm water had submerged the entire lower tier of all the garden spaces for more than 24 hours. The gardens were left littered with debris, uprooted plants and toppled trees.

Related: Wrecked Cummer Gardens Among Jacksonville Casualties Of Irma

After the storm, Bold City Brewery approached museum staff to see if there was anything the brewery could do to help. From that conversation, a new beer was born, said a Cummer spokeswoman in an email.

Brewers and museum staff worked together to come up with a concept for the beer that would highlight the flora and trees in the Cummer’s backyard.

“The Cummer Oak was, of course, the first thing to come to mind, soon followed by the abundance of roses throughout the gardens,” a Cummer spokeswoman said.

Credit Cummer Museum of Arts & Gardens
Oak, rose petals and rose hips are ingredients in the Avant Gardener brew.

From that, Brewer Alex Johnson came up with the recipe using a slab of oak, rose petals and rose hips, which are the fruits of a rose plant.

Cummer Marketing Manager Amber Sesnic said the beer is brewing now and will be first available in Bold City’s taproom on Feb. 7. A portion of the Avant Gardener beer proceeds from will go to the garden reconstruction fund.

Lindsey Kilbride can be reached at, 904-358-6359 or on Twitter at@lindskilbride.

Lindsey Kilbride was WJCT's special projects producer until Aug. 28, 2020. She reported, hosted and produced podcasts like Odd Ball, for which she was honored with a statewide award from the Associated Press, as well as What It's Like. She also produced VOIDCAST, hosted by Void magazine's Matt Shaw, and the ADAPT podcast, hosted by WJCT's Brendan Rivers.