Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Asheville, NC: Beer Opportunities Abound!

I've been visiting Asheville, NC, for several years now; it was here at Barley's Taproom and Pizzeria that I had my first Dogfish Head IPA, the 60 minute version. Life changing event!

Well, now that I am a neighbor (just down the road about 55 miles) I've been spending some time getting to better know the town and its expanding craft beer scene. No shortage of venues, as this web page shows. And, as I have just learned, no shortage of ways to visit them.

Take the Amazing Pubcycle, for instance. I first encountered it on Biltmore Ave this past Sunday after I visited Wicked Weed again (more about that later).

Mostly pedal-powered (there is an electric motor assist) this "bike" allows 10 pedalers (and 3 layabouts on a bench) to get from brewery to brewery in the downtown area without parking hassles or having to ask for directions and to work off a few calories in the process.

A group leader pours for fellow adventurers. Employees can't serve or sell; it's a BYOB situation.

This group had just left Wicked Weed when I found them. They were having fun, eager to get to the next stop.

I'll have more to say about this "pub on wheels" after I have personally participated, probably in the next week or so.

Meanwhile, back at Wicked Weed, for my second visit and with Kay participating, this was our tasting lineup:

From bottom left, clockwise we have:

°Wicked Fest beer, a medium bodied lager, with a strong malt presence. Refreshing and drinkable! ABV 6.2%

°Heresy Brown ale, with a nutty, toasty flavor, medium body, finishes a little drier than you might expect from the style. Again, drinkable! ABV 4.6%

°Pumpkanne ale; yet another in this popular seasonal lineup, I actually liked this one a lot. Well balanced with enough hops to counter the typical pumpkin pie spices, which were subdued and light in the finish. ABV 5.2%

°Freak Double IPA; a treat for hopheads like me, lots of West Coast varieties keep the citrus and dank aromas and flavors very forward. Our favorite of the group. ABV 8%.

°Dirty Weeds; a black IPA with lots of Summit, Columbus and El Dorado hops. This ale was made with the collaboration of ACDC's bass player, Cliff Williams, so you know this one is big. ABV 6.8% of hoppiness.

°Poperinge is a Belgian IPA named after a small town in Belgium, known for its hops. Very drinkable and drier in the finish than most Belgians, very little clove in the finish. I'm not a big fan of Belgians yet, but I could see myself drinking this one often. ABV 7.2%

All photos by Marv Parker

So, that's one brewery down, many more to go. I'll keep adding more in the upcoming days as I get the time to pay them a visit.These are the ones on my list.

And of course, there are plenty of events here in Greenville to cover, so I'll be a busy (but hoppy) boy in the near future. Stay tuned!!


No comments:

Post a Comment