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Posts Tagged ‘NC Beer’

As summer turns to fall and the leaves fall on the lawn, two type of beer styles start to hit the shelves:  pumpkin ales and Octoberfests.  The former of the two are typically brewed by small craft brewers; however, some of the larger brewers also try their hand at the style.  For the Raleigh area, the best pumpkin ale you can get is Big Boss’s Harvest Time Spiced Pumpkin Ale.  Although some brewer’s only use pumpkin spice in their pumpkin ale, Big Boss uses real pumpkin as well as a blend of spices.  Though they do not reveal their blend of spices, it is likely something with some form of cinnamon, nutmeg, or allspice.

Look for an amber medium to full bodied ale with plenty of sweet maltiness along with pumpkin flavors matched well with spice and just enough bittering.

As far as packaging goes, Big Boss has some of the best.  The grim reaper theme goes well with pumpkins and the month of October and Halloween.

Six packs will be available in area stores soon.  You can also get it on draft at the tasting room.

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I haven’t posted in a while about the up and coming breweries in the area, but there is alot going on so I figured I would share some information.

First up, everyone should check out Fullsteam’s new endeavors with brewing beer with Kudzu.  Sean Wilson is researching the first beer brewed with Kudzu–an authentic NC beer–which to my knowledge will be the only truly authentic and original NC beer.  His research has even included helping to load a 504 bails of the dried plant.  You can check out the progress at the website http://www.fullsteam.ag/

Lonerider Beer has nixed their porter as a second year round and is researching a second year round offering for the area.  I sampled their brown ale as a possible second year round beer and was given a growler.   I will give it a formal review in a future post.  From the sample, I can say that it is a solid English style brown ale with enough East Kent Goldings to pair perfectly with the Marris Otter malt and lightly sweet chocolate flavors.  They didn’t skimp out on the malt which always makes for a great English Brown.  Though it is tasty, it would seem odd to try and put that on the market against Big Boss’  Bad Penny which already has such a foothold in the area.  They have plans to take open a tasting room at their brewery in the future.

Big Boss Brewing has already released their seasonal Harvest Time Pumpkin which can be sampled at the tasting room, bought in six packs (first time for a BB seasonal), or found in bars in the area.  I would expect Raleigh Times to have it as they usually keep a tap devoted to  BBC seasonals.   According to a forum posting, Brixx Pizza in Chapel Hill will also have this on tap through the fall.

Boylan Bridge Brewpub has started offering cask conditioned version of their beers from time to time.  They also have a summer seasonal and Scottish Ale as of late.

Natty Greene’s, the Greensboro Brewpub, will be opening a Raleigh Brewpub later this year.  Mike Morris, who is currently brewing at Big Boss will be the head brewer.  I have enjoyed every beer brewed by Mike at Big Boss and look forward to this great new addition to Raleigh.   The year round offerings will be sent from the Greensboro Brewpub while Morris will brew 5 seasonal offerings.

A new brewery distributed in the area–to those beer geeks that are aware–is the Scottish based brewer Brewdog.   You can now find their bottles of Punk IPA, Dogma (an herb spiced beer), Hardcore Double IPA, and Riptide Imperial Stout in single bombers.

On a final note, the 2009 Durham World Beer Festival will be held on October 3rd in the Historic Durham Athletic Park.  I look forward to a great event, helping with a NC distributor, and getting to see the many faces of craft beer in the area.  Cheers!

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Summer School classes, work, and plenty of other distractions have kept me from posting in a while.  Either way, here are is my most recent update on the whole beer scene in Raleigh, NC.

Last Friday I had dinner at Busy Bee with the wife.  The service was great and the waitress was very knowledgeable and took plenty of time to explain the beer list and describe their rare beers.  I had Aviator’s Berliner Weiss which Busy Bee had Busy Bee had them brew specifically for their restaurant.  They offer it with a blueberry syrup made from local fresh organic blueberries as well as a pomegranate syrup.  I had the pomegranate andenjoyed the beer both with and without the syrup.  The tart and sour quality was not quite as strong as I would have liked for the style, but it was good nonetheless.  I also got the turkey sandwich with a side salad.  The salad was small but flavorful and the sandwich was substantial with plenty of turkey, avocado, tomato, bacon, and red onion.   The Brooklyn Brewing Brewmaster series has now switched to cuvee de cardoz, a Belgian-inspired wheat beer brewed in collaboration with three-star chef Floyd Cardox of Tabisha restaurant.   Cuvee de Cardoz is a flavorful Belgian with five different spices. 

Last night, I made it out to the release of Stone Brewing’s  Levitatioin Ale at Flying Saucer in Raleigh, NC.  Flying Saucer is a great beer bar in Raleigh and they are continually improving with special tap and cask nights.  Not only did they release Levitation, a really good sessionable amber ale, but they had a keg of Stone’s double dry hopped IPA. 

A great new place in Raleigh for folks to check out is Brickhouse across from Meredith College on Hillsborough St.  It used to be Playmaker’s, but has recently re-opened as Brickhouse.  It is still a sports bar, but 1/3 of their taps (I would guess around 30-40) were devoted to NC beers.  This is one of the few places with French Broad on tap in Raleigh.  They had Rye Hopper when I went by to check it out.   The beer list on their site is not up to date.

Finally, we can celebrate with Fullsteam Brewing and look forward to their beer in the future as they are one step closer to selling beer.  Today they signed a lease and hopefully will be selling their authentic NC beer soon.  Expect 16 oz. cans.

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