Tag Archives: charlotte craft beer

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/2/15

The Five Articles are here a little late (blame laundry and breakfast).  Two other things to bring up before the links.  First, go over to Gravity Magazine and read about NC craft beverages, including a couple of things by yours truly.  Second, real football starts tomorrow when my alma mater takes on a sports program which has two nicknames owned by other schools (USC and Carolina).  The loser tomorrow won’t be able to use Carolina for the next year.

Beer Counselor Special: South End Charlotte Brewery Tour, August 2015

Last week, I decided since I had my first Sunday off in 6 months I would use that time to do something special: Drink beer.  You may ask, “Don’t you do that every day.” Why yes, yes I do.  However, this time I wanted to make a full day of it in Charlotte (my once and future home) and do a brewery tour.

So, I texted Lankford, “What are you doing today?”

“Nothing, just cleaning house and laundry.”

“I’m going to Charlotte to drink beer, want to come along?”

“What time do you want to leave?”

“11:30”

“I’ll text you when I’m on the way.”

Thus began the South End Brewery Tour of August 2015.

20150802_131409We arrived at Olde Mecklenburg around 12:30 to an already packed house.  I decided to start off with something slow. I choose the barrel-aged Fat Boy Baltic Porter.  I say slow because this is a great sipping beer.  It’s dark, heavy, and flavorful.  You don’t want to rush a beer this good.  It is even better in a setting like OMB. The best way to describe it, to craft beer drinkers who haven’t been is a mini version of the Sierra Nevada brewery in Asheville.

20150802_133617Next, we went across the street to Sugar Creek.  This is a smaller, more intimate space.  We sat down at the bar this time and I had the Saison, which I love, and Lankford had the award winning Dubbel.  This was another pretty full house and like Olde Mecklenburg and the other places we would visit that day, there were a lot of families there.  This is one of the things I like about craft beer.  It is trying to build a community and become just a regular part of people’s everyday lives.

20150802_145555We left Sugar Creek and headed to Triple C passing by Doc Porter’s Distillery, which looks to be coming along nicely.  We settled in at Triple C and ordered up the Smoked Amber.  This is a good introduction to smoked beer.  It isn’t heavily smoky but it does have a distinct smoked presence that if you like you can expand upon with other smoked offerings out there.  There was another nice crowd at the bar and families with kids and dogs scattered throughout.

20150802_154010We were both hungry at this point so we took a quick pit stop at Fuel Pizza on South Blvd. for a couple of slices and garlic knots.

20150802_162123Our next stop was Wooden Robot.  I parked over at Craft and we walked the two blocks or so to get to another packed house.  Lankford did comment that everywhere we went there seemed to be a good crowd.  Here I had the first beer of the day I had never had before, the rye saison.  This provided an interesting taste as the rye provided an intriguing addition to the light spiciness of the saison.

We finished up at Craft where we went to hang out and harass Dana and Julio before heading back home.  It was a good relaxing day filled with beer and friends.  I need to do this more often.  The next time I’ll change up the breweries and hit Sycamore, Lenny Boy, and Unknown.

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.