Wednesday, November 23, 2011

#12 - North Carolina, "The Tar Heel State" - Intro

I've been going to North Carolina for vacation for as long as I can remember, but only recently did I venture away from the Outer Banks and to the rest of the state. The same can be said for my foray's into NC beer. As of this summer, the only beer I can remember having from NC was Duck Rabbit's Amber Ale. Since then, I've had several more brews from three or four more breweries from the Tar Heel State.

North Carolina is very diverse geographically, with mountains in the West and coastal communities on the East side. Last year I visited Charlotte, Raleigh, Chapel Hill, and Durham, each for the first time. Unfortunately I've been to pretty much every major area of North Carolina except for its undisputed beer capital, Asheville. Asheville is located in the Appalachain Mountains and it boasts a vibrant art scene.

Stats for NC:
Breweries/Brew Pubs: 49. Wow. Including 10 in Asheville alone.
Cleanest City: Charlotte. When we stayed downtown last year, it seemed like most of Charlotte had been built within the last year. Obviously not true, but it's really clean with wide sidewalks. Pretty small, but really cool.
Vacation Spot Least Like the Jersey Shore: The Outer Banks. Although it has become more and more popular, it's still a great place to go to relax and spend time on the beach. Plus the OBX Brewing Station is a high quality brew pub with really good food.

Here are the breweries I've tried from North Carolina:
Natty Greene's
Outer Banks Brewing Station
Mother Earth
Duck Rabbit

Check out this page for the rest of them.

I'll probably just get the map up and skip the in depth look at every brewery since I'm pretty far behind.

Maybe when I visit Asheville for the first time I'll revisit it.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

New York Brewery Map

I didn't follow through on profiling each of the New York breweries that I've either tried or been to, so I'll quickly finish up here.

I've been to three breweries in New York; Keuka, Horseheads, and Ithaca. Ithaca had my favorite brews, Keuka has the best tasting room, and Horseheads was small and somewhat non-descript. Still cool though. At Ithaca one beer we sampled was one that they do not serve on a large scale. It is an unfiltered version of their Apricot Wheat that they called Rough Draft. It's made with fresh apricots, rather than syrup as their regular Apricot is, and since it's unfiltered, it is a lot hazier than it's clear counterpart. We liked it so much that we bought a growler.

I've also been to two winery/breweries in the Finger Lakes; Wagner Winery/Brewery and Miles Wine Cellar. Wagner is a full scale brewery with tastings. Miles was a small operation that seemed to be pretty new to the beer game. They both have gorgeous locations on the East and West of Seneca Lake, respectively.

In general, New York has some really solid breweries. These are the other six that I have tried but haven't visited yet; Southern Tier, Saranac (Matt Brewing), Six Point, Brooklyn, Blue Point, and Brewery Ommegang.

This is a map for the places that I have visited or tried so far. Go to this page for the full list and map of the rest of New York State's breweries.

As everyone knows, there are two distinct regions of New York State; NYC and Upstate. I suggest visiting the breweries in that order, NYC first, and then go relax in Upstate.

1. Blue Point
2. Brooklyn
3. Six Point
4. Brewery Ommegang
5. Matt Brewing
6. Ithaca
7. Horseheads
8. Wagner
9. Miles
10. Keuka
11. Southern Tier.

View New York Breweries in a larger map