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AUBURN — Prison City Pub & Brewery's most popular beer once again lived up to its name.

Saturday morning saw the Auburn brewpub release 16-ounce cans of its Mass Riot India pale ale for the first time. The beer has been in high demand since summer 2016, when national publication Paste Magazine voted it No. 1 in a blind tasting of almost 250 IPAs, ahead of beers from national names like Firestone Walker and cult favorites like Trillium.

Prison City has previously released one or two Crowlers (32-ounce cans) of Mass Riot per person. But Saturday, the brewpub was able to sell customers at least two four-packs of 16-ounce cans each, as well as two four-packs of Prison City's 4 Piece Pale Ale (with Galaxy hops). The first 20 people in line were able to buy four four-packs of Mass Riot.

The brewpub had enough cans for about 175 people. In the interest of selling them to as many people as possible, it had to cut the allotment past the first 20 people from four four-packs to two due to canning issues, Prison City posted on social media Friday. By 11 a.m., 30 minutes before opening, they were all claimed. The line of customers snaked from the brewpub's Dill Street entrance to the intersection of State and Genesee — about 200, Prison City co-owner Marc Schulz said as he broke the bad news to a steady stream of late arrivals.

The first in line was Kevin Fredette, of Auburn, who arrived at the brewpub at 12:15 a.m. Saturday. He said he sat in his car on Dill Street until about 4 a.m., when the next customers arrived.

"I got scared when they cut the allotment down to the first 20 people," he said with a shiver.

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Lake Life Editor David Wilcox can be reached at (315) 282-2245 or Follow him on Twitter @drwilcox.


Features editor for The Citizen.