South Florida Beer Collector Auctioning Off ‘White Whales’ To Raise Funds For Child With Stage 4 Neuroblastoma

For Ian Hunter, collecting beer was a passion.

Now he’s putting that collector’s spirit into a good cause, by putting up super rare and hard to find beers to auction this Thursday September 24th at 5pm inside the Funky Buddha Lounge and Brewery in Boca Raton to raise money for a family burdened with childhood cancer.

“We are doing it to raise money for our friend’s three year old son who was diagnosed with stage four neuroblastoma earlier this year,” Hunter told me. “I’ve never done anything like this before.”

That child is Landon, a young boy diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma, a rare and aggressive form of childhood cancer. “I had just met them in late July, early August at the swimming pool,” he said. “[His mother] told us what happened. Our kids are close in age, and it really affected me. I can’t imagine it [happening to] my son.”

“I have all these beers from when I lived in Pennsylvania, I honestly would never drink. So maybe we can get something going, we reached out to a couple people, the response was pretty good, so we’re going with it.”

Some of the bottles going up to auction include:

  • 1998 Cantillon Lou Pepe Kriek.
  • 1998 Cantillon Lou Pepe Framboise. These are 1/120 bottles the brewery released of this very special beer.
  • 1968 (first year of production) Thomas Hardy’s Ale
  • 1974 (first year Eldridge Pope started distribution) Thomas Hardy’s Ale
  • 2008 (last year produced) Thomas Hardy’s Ale
  • 2002 Gouden Carolus Carolus D’Or (a case)
  • 1996 Kulmbacher Reichelbrau Eisbock
  • 1998 Fuller’s Vintage Ale
  • 1999 Fuller’s Vintage Ale
  • 1995 Kriek Boon Mariage Parfait

“I talked to a friend of mine today who is really big in the beer community, he had a friend who is an authority in the beer world. Those Cantillons, they didn’t even know they existed.”

Indeed, these beers are quite rare and sought after by collectors. Draft Magazine uncapped three vintages of the renowned Thomas Hardy’s ales in 2012 — the 1968, 1987, and 2008 vintages — describing that oldest of beers as “a masterpiece, with each sip being a delicious, new experience.”

In addition, Cigar City Brewing has donated some bottles and Due South Brewing Co. is providing some barrel-aged Mariana Trench.

So for those looking to find some of the rarest and oldest beers to hit South Florida in years, head to the Funky Buddha Lounge tonight at 5pm to join in the event. All proceeds from a special Berlinerweisse brewed specifically for the event will go towards the family.

Hunter praised the Buddha and its owners. “Ryan [Sentz] has been super supportive.”


Here’s Landon’s full story:

“At the end of April 2015 Landon was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma, a rare and aggressive form of childhood cancer, after doctors found a large tumor in his abdomen as well as small tumors all in his bones. Landon has already undergone surgery to remove in the abdominal tumor, stem cell harvesting and five rounds of chemotherapy. His treatment plan will continue with more chemotherapy, a stem cell transplant, radiation and immunotherapy. London’s journey will be long but he has already shown that he is resilient and will not let cancer defeat him. It is rare to not see Landon without a smile on his face even during long hospital stays. Landon loves being outside, cars and super heroes.”