The Beer News

Here are this week’s happenings in and around the Charlotte, NC area.

  • Thursday, February 1st Birdsong Brewing Co. Buffalo Trace Turtles on Pterodactyls. 3 pm-10 pm It’s not every day that we release a 4-pack of barrel aged yumminess! Join us on 2/1 for the release of Buffalo Trace Turtles of Pterodactyls! In case you aren’t familiar, Turtles on Pterodactyls is our beloved Mexicali Stout aged in bourbon barrels! This year Mexicali was aged in Buffalo Trace Distillery bourbon barrels and will be offered in cans instead of bottles! We’ll be releasing it on draught & in 16oz can 4-packs at 3pm on 2/1!
  • Friday, February 2nd U.S. National Whitewater Center. Rivers Edge Craft Dinner with Sugar Creek Brewing Co. 6:30 pm-9 pm Tickets at USNWC.org. Join us at River’s Edge for Craft Dinner, taking place Friday evenings from December 1st through February 9th. Enjoy a five-course dinner created by Executive Chef Michael Rayfield with a 6 oz. beer pairing for each course. Each night will feature a different regional brewery including New Sarum Brewing Company, Legion Brewing, Triple C Brewing Co., Sycamore Brewing, Highland Brewing Company, Legal Remedy Brewing Co., Birdsong Brewing Company, Lenny Boy Brewing Co., Sugar Creek Brewing Company, Wooden Robot Brewery.
    EVENT DETAILS:
    Location: U.S. National Whitewater Center
    Brewery: Sugar Creek Brewing
    Price: $60 per person
    Time: 6:30 -9:00 pm
    Registration closes the day prior to each event at midnight
    Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options are available. Please select your dietary preference after selecting a date for registration.
    Suitable for ages 21 and up
    UPGRADE: CHEF’S TABLE
    Upgraded experience featuring a chef-prepared meal inside the kitchen
    Interact directly with the Chef to learn how each dish is created, how ingredients are sustainably sourced, and receive a kitchen tour
    Price: $70 per person
    Time: 6:30 -9:00 pm
    MENU http://usnwc.org/relax/adventure-dining/rivers-edge-craft-dinner/
  • Friday, February 2nd Catawba Brewing Co. Charlotte. King Coconut Release 12 pm-11 pm Western North Carolina’s original coconut beer returns for the 14th year! It was 2004 when Catawba brewers had the stroke of genius to age a rich chocolatey porter on oven-toasted coconut. And this silky smooth “candy bar in a can” has continued to be a crowd favorite every year since, with many a luau held in its honor. King Coconut Porter has traditionally seen a limited summer release to celebrate its tropical side. But in 2018 we’re moving it up to late winter, as an appetizer course before our PB&J release. Because it’s always a good time for liquid dessert! 
  • Saturday, February 3rd Trackside Crafts Nugget Nectar Firkin. 12 pm-10 pm. We are fortunate to have a firkin of Troegs’ excellent Nugget Nectar this year! We’ll tap it, along with a keg of the 2015 Mad Elf. It ages wonderfully, and we’ll have more from Troegs to be featured as well. Don’t miss out on this special cask! Like our page, and follow us on Instagram & Twitter, too!  
  • Sunday, February 4th. Legion Brewing Release Why So Cereal 10 am-8 pm You’ve been waiting patiently… now join us for the release of “Why So Cereal”, our Cinnamon Toast Crunch Blonde Ale in collaboration withCharlotteFive and Queen City Brewers Festival!
    We will be serving up some fun Cinnamon Toast Crunch brunch items to enjoy with your pint full of Saturday morning goodness!
    Thanks to Dave McClure for this awesome name- “Why So Cereal” will be available on tap and in crowlers to-go!
  • Tuesday, February 6th The Casual Pint Troegs Nugget Nectar First Squeeze Event. 6 pm- 8pm. Once a year, as the new hop harvest arrives at Tröegs, we blend super-fresh Nugget, Palisade and Simcoe hops into this Imperial Amber Ale. Excessively dry-hopped, Nugget Nectar is an explosion of pine, resin and mango. Also on tap, some of Troegs R&D Room SCRATCH brews!!

Deschutes Brewery Pacific Wonderland Lager

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I pick up Deschutes Brewery Pacific Wonderland Lager, 5.5% ABV and 40 IBUs at my local grocery store in a make your own six-pack. Pacific Wonderland Lager is a dry-hopped lager with Mandarina Bavaria Hops and pours a hazy bright yellow with a tow bring bright white head that slowly falls into itself giving off bitter lemon aromas with a hoppy note the is faint at best, and you get a hoppy/bitter lemon flavor that is faintly dry with some almost none existent sweetness with a dry bitter lemon finish and a similar lemon aftertaste that linger a little with a lighter mouthfeel. This was slightly better than average, so a C+ from me. I like it a little at some points while drinking this Pacific Wonderland Lager and I also didn’t like it at the other points as well. I found the hoppy notes trying to take over the lemon flavor which made for a weird flavor in your mouth but it fades rapidly and a lager flavor came int to play on the back of the mouth which helped. I don’t recommend this Deschutes Brewery Pacific Wonderland Pacific Wonderland lager and I probably won’t come back to this beer soon. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!    

Allagash Brewing Comapny Hive 56 Ale Brewed with Honey and Brettanomyces

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I picked this Allagash Brewing Company Hive 56 Ale Brewed with Honey and Brettanomyces, 9.2% ABV up from a clearance cart in my local grocery store beer and wine department just the other day. Hive 56 is a dark sour ale aged with honey in an oak foudre for eighteen months and blended with dark Munich malt, chocolate wheat, midnight wheat, roasted barley, and hopped with Cascade and Northern Brewer. Hive 56 undergoes initial fermentation with Allagash’s house yeast; then they transfer the beer to a foudre with Brettanoyces Bruxellensis  (a type of wild/living yeast) and fresh honey from their own beehives. Hive 56 pours a dark brown color with a two finger slow beige head giving off dark fruit aromas with some sweetness and a slight honey note, that takes you into a sweet dark fruit/ tropical fruit taste with nice slight touches of honey that finish with a strong note from the 9.2% ABV and some slight sweetness and a nice fruited  aftertaste with a fuller mouthfeel that kind of sticks to your tongue for a short bit. Hive 56 is an interesting beer that has a lot going on, I give  Allagash Brewing Company Hive 56 Ale Brewed with Honey and Brettanomyces a B. I could taste a  big tropical fruit flavor on this beer, it was faint at best but you get more dark fruits which are good. I don’t think this beer is for everyone, and I think you have to really enjoy most styles of beer to really want to try this or to like this beer. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!     

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Hop Bullet Double IPA

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This is a new springtime beer from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Hop Bullet Double IPA, 8.0% ABV and 60 IBUs, this double IPA is brewed with loads of Magnum Hops a Lupulin Dust. Hop Bullet pours a golden yellow color with a two finger head with some good retention giving off bitter orange and big pineapple and west coast IPA aromas that pull you more pineapple taste with nice big bitterness, a bit of orange and some slight grapefruit, melon with a nice west coast hoppiness on the back that has a nice strong bitter fruited finish and a big bitter earthy aftertaste with a medium mouthfeel. This is good but they can do a little better than this, Torpedo is a little better than this, but this has a touch more fruit flavor to this. Overall not a bad double IPA, it gets a B-. As Hop Bullet warms the bitterness becomes evermore present and strong and the fruity flavors are toned down a bit. I do recommend Hop Bullet Double IPA, it good. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!   

Throwback Thursday: The Pike Brewery Seattle’s Famous Space Needle Golden IPA

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It is always great to have a beer at the source. Recently I visited Seattle and the Pike Brewery. I really enjoyed their beers. They are great. When I got back I thought to try some more of their beers and review them. So my father picked up this, The Pike Seattle’s Famous Space Needle Golden IPA, 6.5% ABV with IBU of 58. Space Needle doesn’t pour a golden color it pours more like a traditional IPA, a little murky orange color with a huge tower of bright fluffy white head that never seems to fade away. The aroma is with malts and earthy notes with hints of slight grassy features. The taste is slightly bitter up front with a more malted present in the middle and becomes a little more bitter on the end. This some similar in flavor to an English IPA with it malt profile. The mouthfeel is light to a slight medium and has a nice malted but bitter finish. The aftertaste is nice juicy touches of nice malted flavors and hints of an earthy note. Overall this was good but not what I was expecting, by still a good beer. So I say that The Pike Seattle’s Famous Space Needle Golden IPA is a B. I was going into this beer thinking it was going to be more lager or pilsner tasting that malty bitter IPA. Still, I thought it was good and yes I would have this again, and you should try it too. The fact that it read Golden IPA on the label and it did not taste like a golden beer was not good in my book but the flavor that I did taste was great. I really think that The Pike does a great job with their beer; I mean they have been doing since 1989. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!

The Beer News

Are this week news and event happening in and around the Charlotte, NC area!

  • Wednesday, January 24th Charlotte Resturant Week NoDa Brewing Company hosted bt Tin Kitchen. 5 pm-9 pm. Ticket info http://www.nodabrewing.com. 
  • Thursday, January 25th Carolina Beer Temple. Firestone Walker Tap Takeover 6 pm-9 pm. Please join us Thursday, January 25th at the Carolina Beer Temple when we will be featuring the fabulous and wonderful beers of Firestone Walker Brewing Co. (Paso Robles, CA) in a tap takeover extravaganza!!!
    We will be featuring discounted drafts and flights all day from Firestone Walker. The tap list includes:
    Union Jack IPA
    Luponic Distortion IPA
    Pivo Pilsner
    Merlin Stout *Nitro*
    We’ll see you Thursday! 25th. 
  • Thursday, January 25th Trackside Crafts Green Man Pint Night. 7 pm-10 pm. Green Man Brewing from Asheville will be in the shop, along with their sales rep, Andrew. He literally looks like the Green Man logo, so make sure you get a picture of him and post it on Instagram. 😉 We’ll be tapping their ESB, Lager, and the excellent Trickster IPA! See you then!
  • Friday, January 26th Triple C Brewing Co. Carolina Rum Barrel Cake Release. 4 pm-10 pm. Our newest barrel aged creation. This 9% Golden Stout was brewed with Coffee, Cacao Nibs, and Cinnamon and aged in Muddy River Distillery Rum Barrels! This beer will be on tap and for sale in 22oz bombers in the taproom only. $14 each with a limit of 6 bottles per customer.
  • Thursday, January 25th Duckworths Grille and Taphouse Ballantyne. Sierra Nevada Hop Bullet Double IPA Tapping. 6 pm-8 pm. Join us for this special tapping! Sierra Nevada reps will be attending to give away samples and swag.
    ABOUT THE BEER:
    Brewed with a double-barreled blast of Magnum hops and lupulin dust. Hops are the name of the game with a Double IPA, but we knew we had to take it one step further. With Hop Bullet, we’re using a new technique, hitting the beer with a double-barreled blast of Magnum hops and lupulin dust—pure, concentrated hop flavor—directly into the tank to emphasize the intense pine and citrus flavors of classic West Coast hops. 
  • Friday, January 26th U.S. National Whitewater Center. River’s Edge Craft Beer Dinner with Lenny Boy Brewing Co. Ticket info USNWC.org. Join us at River’s Edge for Craft Dinner, taking place Friday evenings from December 1st through February 9th. Enjoy a five-course dinner created by Executive Chef Michael Rayfield with a 6 oz. beer pairing for each course. Each night will feature a different regional brewery including New Sarum Brewing Company, Legion Brewing, Triple C Brewing Co., Sycamore Brewing, Highland Brewing Company, Legal Remedy Brewing Co., Birdsong Brewing Company, Lenny Boy Brewing Co., Sugar Creek Brewing Company, Wooden Robot Brewery.
    EVENT DETAILS:
    Location: U.S. National Whitewater Center
    Brewery: Lenny Boy Brewing Co.
    Price: $60 per person
    Time: 6:30 -9:00 pm
    Registration closes the day prior to each event at midnight
    Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options are available. Please select your dietary preference after selecting a date for registration.
    Suitable for ages 21 and up
    UPGRADE: CHEF’S TABLE
    Upgraded experience featuring a chef-prepared meal inside the kitchen
    Interact directly with the Chef to learn how each dish is created, how ingredients are sustainably sourced, and receive a kitchen tour
    Price: $70 per person
    Time: 6:30 -9:00 pm
    MENU
    http://usnwc.org/relax/adventure-dining/rivers-edge-craft-dinner/
     
  • Saturday, January 26th Olde Mecklenburg Brewery. BA Fat Boy Breakfast, 9 am-11 am. Tickets at http://www.the-olde-mecklenburg-brewery.myshopify.com. Happy New Year! Let’s start 2018 with one of OMB’s best events…
    The BA Fat Boy Breakfast is the ONLY OMB event that requires a ticket for admission, making it our most cozy and intimate event. With our taproom expansion completed in September, there will be more room to spread out, sit down and enjoy a morning full of amazing food and a special drink.
    This event has quickly grown in popularity over the past two years. With Fat Boy’s 2017 European Beer Star GOLD win, we expect this year’s batch of Barrel Aged Fat Boy to be especially desired.
    This year’s batch of BA Fat Boy was aged for 10 weeks in Great Wagon Road Distilling’s Quinn’s barrels. Quinn’s was awarded the Bronze Medal (2017) at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
    Buy tickets today! All details about the tickets can be found on the ticket page linked at the top of the event post.
    Important notes:
    • The event1/27/18 from 9am-11am.
    • You must buy tickets in advance. No tickets will be sold at the door. A ticket is required for admission.
    • We are NOT hosting the bottle share before the breakfast this year. If you have any questions, please reply to this email.
    • This is an adult-oriented event. We highly recommend 21+.
    • This event is mostly indoors. We highly recommend not bringing your pet.
    Thanks & Prost!
  • Sunday, January 27th Charlotte Resturant Week NoDa Brewing Company hosted bt Tin Kitchen. 5 pm-9 pm. Ticket info http://www.nodabrewing.com. 
  • Tuesday, January 30th Duckworth Grille, and Taphouse Park Road. Foothills Tapping Bourbon Barrel Aged Sexual Chocolate. 6 pm-11:59 pm. We’re tapping some of Foothills’ finest: Barrel Aged Sexual Chocolate, Dead & Berried, Torch Pilsner and MORE!  

Lagunitas Brewing Company Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale

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I’ve found that Lagunitas Brewing Company in Petaluma California is quite popular among craft beer drinkers, so I decided to pick one up to review, Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, 7.5% ABV, this is a Pale Wheat Ale. Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale pours a yellow clear color with a two finger white head that dissipates somewhat quickly leaving very tiny lacing behind and aromas of earth sweet pine notes with slight hop notes that give you a similar sweet earthy bitter flavor with slight orange on the back that is slightly sweeter than it smells, with a nice bitter/sweet finish and an aftertaste of that is more like a semi-sweet IPA all with a medium mouthfeel. This isn’t the so bad nor is it good it’s slight south of boring, C-. I found there to be not enough sweetness, that was hidden behind the bitter earthy notes that make this beer more IPA like that anything especially a pale wheat. It’s trying to be two different beer, an IPA/hoppy beer, and a pale wheat ale at the same time cause a clash of flavors that don’t excite. I am not really sure if I would go back to Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale again but it’s worth a try in my book. Maybe this is not the Lagunitas Brewing Company beer that will convince me of it’s popularity. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!      

Southern Tier Brewing Co. Harvest Special Ale

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I am not a big fan of Southern Tier Brewing Co. and I only like a couple of their beers but one of my family members got to sample this Southern Tier Harvest Special Ale, 6.7% ABV at the local grocery store and bought a six-pack home. So I thought I would give it a proper review. Harvest pours an amber color with a one and a half finger off-white head that somewhat slow to dissipate giving off a malty aroma of slight bitter oranger with a hoppy not, to me it has more of an English IPA aroma, that lead you toward a bitter malty flavor of slight orange hoppy notes that give you more of an English IPA taste with a bitter finish and aftertaste of English malts with a slight hop note with a medium mouthfeel. I didn’t find this to be much like a harvest beer and more like a bad English IPA, so it gets a D. Southern Tier Harvest Special Ale did not taste like what it was labeled as and that is what I consider false advertising. I think that it could use more malt to keep some of the hop bitterness down and give it more flavor throughout. Southern Tier Harvest Special Ale isn’t something I’d recommend nor will I be going back to this. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!      

Throwback Thursday: Granite Falls Brewing Co. Blue Ridge Harvest Series Sweet Cherry Falls

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I’ve got another local North Carolina beer, this is Granite Falls Brewing Co. Sweet Cherry Falls, 6% ABV. Granite Falls Brewing Co. is in Granite Falls N.C. This is sour cherry ale from Granite Falls Brewing Co.’s Blue Ridge Harvest Sour Series, and is brewed in the winter cause cherries are the deep and darkest of the stone fruits. Sweet Cherry Falls pours a bright magenta hue with barely any head. The aroma is acidic with candied cherry fruit and a hint of a sour note, as it does warm the flavor becomes more medicinal tasting. Taste on Sweet Cherry Falls is slightly sour at first with a clean lactic sourness then steps into a sweet candied cherry tart note.  The mouthfeel is light and sour, with an acidic and somewhat sour yet tart finish. The aftertaste is tart with a faint sweetness.  The tartness does linger a little in your mouth but it’s not overly strong. Sweet Cherry Falls is good but not as rich as I thought it was going be. So it’s C+. I’d like this to be more complex and less candy cherry tasting. I’d like this to have more of a real cherry flavor. It is a bit on the fake side, but not far enough to make it bad. It is easy drinking and has good flavor. But there are not enough good ones though. I wouldn’t run back to Sweet Cherry Falls. I didn’t find this to be overly exciting nor was it terrible. It was average to me. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!

Granite Falls Brewing Blue Ridge Havest Sour Series Boysenberry Falls

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This is the second beer from Granite Falls Brewing, from Granite Falls, NC, I’ve had and the first was from the same Blue Ridge Harvest Sour Series, Cherry Falls. This is Boysenberry Falls, 5.5% ABV. Boysenberry Falls pours a deep red color with a three-quarter of a finger pink head that fizzles away quickly with aromas of tart berries with a little sour fruit note that takes you to a tart and sour berry flavor with the faintest sweet note that has a little sourness around it, and finish with a tart yet sour berry not and an aftertaste of sour yet tart notes of boysenberries that linger until your next sip. I can’t really taste how much boysenberries are used in this sour ale, but it the boysenberries in this beer aren’t too overpowering nor do they steal the whole show. This is just an average sour fruit beer, so I give Boysenberry Falls, 5.5% ABV a C. It’s just average nothing really good nor really bad about this beer, and it’s not one I would or wouldn’t recommend. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!