Tag Archives: charlotte beer

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 7/26/15

Today’s five articles are a lot about the explosion of craft beer outside places named Asheville, Portland, and Denver.

  • Will Gordon does a side by side comparison of the two main craft lagers sold in the US: Brooklyn Lager and Sam Adams Boston Lager.  They are both fine beers that will do in a pinch when you are at one of those chain restaurants or sports bars whose craft selection includes Shocktop and Blue Moon.  Gordon’s verdict:  They are essential the same quality, but Brooklyn Lager gets the slight edge in taste.
  • Quick name the place in North Carolina with great craft beer. OK, now name another one besides Asheville.  Let me save you the time:  Charlotte.   Fortune Magazine takes a look at Charlotte and its craft brewing scene.  I will say this Charlotte-centric pride can make Charlotte a bit of a closed shop when it comes to other beers from North Carolina.  I run into too many customers who can name their 4 favorite Charlotte beers and 3 favorite Asheville beers, but have not heard of Mystery Brewing or Fullsteam Brewing.
  • Richmond, VA is having its own brewing renaissance. Breweries are gaining national recognition and growing in size and distribution.
  • Here is the other side of some of that growth Richmond. This is an interesting question:  how much should states pay individual companies to stay in the state?  We in North Carolina are having this discussion now in the state legislature with many of the incentives ending.  What North Carolina found in many cases was that the amount of money given away in incentives was greater than the ancillary tax revenues created (jobs, other additional industries spurred, etc.).  Of course, many of the people who say that are the same ones who will tell you building a sports stadium will spur the economy when every economist will tell you that is at best a case by case argument.
  • We’ve come a long way. Now a public library in the South is holding home brewing classes.  The changing attitudes towards alcohol in the Bible Belt South is the part of the reason the region has some of the fastest growing craft beer areas in the country.  It is also why some of the biggest fights over changing alcohol laws related to craft beer are some of the fiercest as older elements fight to hold on to a quickly changing code.

Growler Taste Test: D9 Brewing Froggy Night IPA

20141107_093756When I was in college and my craft beer education was beginning, I purchased a book called America’s Best Beers:  A Complete Guide To The More Than 350 Microbreweries and Brewpubs Across America.  I happened upon this book last night looking for something else and started flipping through it.  The section on North Carolina contains, 6 breweries (none of which are Weeping Radish, NCs oldest craft brewery started in 1984).  Of those only one still exists and that is Spring Garden Brewing Company which now goes by Red Oak.  By the way, I actually went to Spring Garden when it was a brewpub on Spring Garden Street in Greensboro.

Anyway, a lot has changed in craft brewing, particularly in North Carolina, since this book was published in 1994.  Depending upon your definition of the Charlotte area, Charlotte has 21 breweries alone.  One of those is D9 Brewing which began in 2009.  D9 has a full line up of beers and now has its brewery tap room in Cornelius about a 25 minute drive north on I77 from uptown Charlotte.

20150608_162832The D9 Froggy Night IPA pours with a good pale golden color and off-white fluffy head.  The aroma comes across as fruity particularly grapefruit and pineapple and a bit piney.  There is also a mellow malty sweetness to the aroma.

The taste starts with a medium body and mild alcohol flavor. Again the hops come across as citrusy and piney.  You also get a nice malt sweetness mixed with a pineapple flavor.  This is a very balanced IPA with the hops at the forefront but not overly dominate.

Froggy Night is an easy drinking American IPA. It isn’t quite at the low ABV officially to be a session IPA, but it is very drinkable and at 6.5% you can have a couple or three pints and not get into too much trouble.

Did you think this play list was going to start with any other song?  We are going deep 70s soft rock.  We have your organs, fuzzy bass lines, and the most un-bluesy guitar solos in the history of music.  Behold and enjoy. This is simultaneously the best and worst playlist I’ve ever created.   I’m going to go and watch WKRP In Cincinnati now.

Five Articles You Need To Read And Why, 6/13/15

I got a late start to this sun splashed Saturday morning, so this will be a short and sweet list of articles.

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 5/21/15

There were almost too many links today to choose from. From a great video on Beer Geek TV about how the smaller craft breweries are beginning to get crowded out of shelf space to brewery news from Greenville/Spartanburg.  I decided to concentrate on a question I get a lot at the bar and news from Charlotte, Asheville, and around North Carolina.

I was one review short this week, so my goal next week is to get an extra review or some other type of post completed for Monday.

Growler Taste Review: OMB Hornet’s Nest

“…a hornet’s nest of rebellion…” Bald-Faced-Hornet-Nest

Lord Cornwallis spent all of 16 days in Mecklenburg County in 1780 before being chased out of town by the rebellious residents.  That part of the Charlotte’s history is why the name of the basketball team was so important to many people.  Also, because George Shinn and the rest of the team’s ownership group was so onerous in how they took the team and left town.

In short, if you are from Charlotte and you invoke the use of the phrase “hornet’s nest” you do so at your own peril.  You better step up and use it wisely for something really good. Fortunately for Olde Mecklenburg Brewery with The Hornet’s Nest they have created a nice light summer hefeweizen that does honor to the name.

20150506_132238The Hornet’s Nest weighs in at 5.9% ABV which is a little strong for a hefeweizen, but more than acceptable to me.  It pours with a nice straw color and leaves a big fluffy off-white head with the characteristic haze of a hefe.  On the nose you get the yeast aromas of bananas and cloves and a hint of floral hops.

It has a nice light feel on the tongue and a little bit of dry finish.  It has the classic hefeweizen taste of bananas and cloves.  It may be a little sweet for some, but it seem just right for a summer day on the porch listening to insects buzz around you.

OMB specializes in German style beer adhering strictly to the Reinheitsgebot or “Bavarian Beer Purity Law” that restricts the ingredients used in beer.  It can be rather limiting in what beers you can produce, but those limits also make brewers work harder to make their beers distinctive through quality and taste.  Sometimes it is good to not have the option to put whatever you want in a beer.  It forces the brewer to concentrate on standing out by making good beer and not by adding the craziest ingredient possible to garner the most buzz.

Do I like The Hornet’s Nest?  Yes.  It is a seasonal beer and will be available only through the spring and early summer, so find it and enjoy.