Author Archives for Alex Hannagan

Five Virginia Beers You Need to Try

  1 day ago     66 Views     Leave your thoughts  

Fresh off a good showing from Virginia breweries large and small - to include the independent brewers at Gordon Biersch and Sweetwater Tavern in NoVA! - at the 2018 Great American Beer Festival, let's think a little bit differently on the state of craft beer in the Commonwealth.  Sure, as we pointed out back in March, some places have fallen on hard times, but we're happy to see turn key facilities reopened by a Tucked Away, or an Ornery find a new home.  With so much change, could you really say you'd heard of all the Virginia breweries which brought…

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Bourbon Barrel Baltic Sunrise, Hardywood Park Craft Brewery (Richmond, VA)

  2 days ago     26 Views     Leave your thoughts  

How do you view beer?  Is it something which augments a dinner or social engagement?  Is it something you love in its own right?  Your answer to that question may impact how you like some of the ultra-big and -heavy beers that exist on the fringes of the Virginia beer scene.  If you enjoy beer just to enjoy beer, the layered complexity and boldness of something that took a year (or more) just to make it to your glass may be lost entirely.  I'm always reminded of this when we have some (non-craft beer type) friends over, and I'm gushing…

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New@Life, Oozlefinch Craft Brewery + Old Ox Brewery

  1 week ago     65 Views     Leave your thoughts  

There we are, sitting at spacebar on a seemingly random Thursday night.  The menu has almost completely changed over from the previous week, and their usually innocuous tap list posting to social media looked the same as usual.  Well, almost the same.  Two Oozlefinch beers on draught?  In NoVA?!  This required a visit.  To our half-surprise, we ran into the owner of Oozlefinch, Russel Tinsley, as he made table rounds to talk about the two offerings.  There was a fruited Berliner Weisse, but the more intriguing beer was a collaboration with Old Ox Brewery (one of our local faves) that…

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Lost Weekend, Bluejacket Brewing (Washington, DC)

  3 weeks ago     117 Views     Leave your thoughts  

Wha... why are we talking about a beer that's not from Virginia?  Apart from the fact that we've covered Bluejacket before, or that there's some serious cross-pollination between DC and VA breweries, we happened to notice a picture of the Bluejacket taproom on the twitters recently.  You see, the Brewers Association released a study similar to a question we've asked before, on whether or not breweries with taprooms draw better sales (the answer as always...it depends).  Well, what was important was that they used a picture of Bluejacket on social media as part of the study's release.  We recognized it…

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Live Beer Blogging from Lost Rhino!

  1 month ago     94 Views     Comments Off on Live Beer Blogging from Lost Rhino!  

We're joining you from the penultimate event of the 2018 Beer Bloggers & Writers Conference, which has been hosted right here in Loudoun County!  For the Live Beer Blogging event, we're holed up at Lost Rhino Brewing in Ashburn for a "speed flight," allowing us to taste 10 samples from throughout the Commonwealth.  The event will kick-off around 4:30 and go for an hour.  Our line-up for this evening includes beers from: AleWerks Ardent Blue Mountain Legend Lost Rhino Old Bust Head Port City Reason Starr Hill Vanish We don't know yet what they'll be serving, but check back over…

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Vapid, Aslin Beer Co. (Herndon, VA)

  1 month ago     148 Views     Comments Off on Vapid, Aslin Beer Co. (Herndon, VA)  

We've joked about mules waiting in line for Aslin beers before.  We've also marveled at the rarity of finding not just one, or even two kegs, but an entire tap takeover from Aslin.  It's all for good reason - over July 4th weekend I was lucky enough to visit both Tree House and Trillium while visiting a friend near Boston.  While in line at Tree House, my amusement in watching people wheel out whole dolleys of beer was interrupted by a gal in front of me asking if I were actually from Virginia (I had a UVa hat on).  I…

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Twin Cannons, Tin Cannon Brewing Co. (Gainesville, VA)

  1 month ago     147 Views     Comments Off on Twin Cannons, Tin Cannon Brewing Co. (Gainesville, VA)  

If you had to take the name of your brewery and find a cool pun to describe your flagship Double IPA, Tin Cannon absolutely nailed it.  Twin Cannons could refer to so much - a double blast of hops, florals, bitterness, fruit, malts, or just a double tap to the ole noggin when the warmth of the alcohol finally sets in.  It was one of my favorite discoveries at a beer festival a few years ago, but just a sheer loathing of trying to slog out I-66 to Gainesville kept my snobbish self away for a while.  That's what 20…

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Stairway, Ocelot Brewing Co. (Dulles, VA)

  1 month ago     121 Views     Comments Off on Stairway, Ocelot Brewing Co. (Dulles, VA)  

"Stairway is so 🔥🔥🔥 right now." So read the 4-pack table at Ocelot's third anniversary party a few months ago.  When you signed in and grabbed your beer and to-go tickets, they told you that once you were ready to check out, you could go pick an available 4-pack and waltz out.  I saw a few options and went up to snag one, only to encounter a finger wag. "Not so fast.  Ticket?" said one staff member.  I handed it over. "Here you go," said the other, pushing across some Stairway. "You mean we can't pick anything else?" I inquired.…

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Road Trip Report: Outer Banks, NC

  2 months ago     131 Views     Comments Off on Road Trip Report: Outer Banks, NC  

Why, you ask, would we bother writing about beers in North Carolina, much less on the barrier islands that are prone to having whole stretches swept into the ocean at the faintest whiff of a hurricane?  Because we know a lot of you go there, and there's no use pretending you don't.  It's a shorter drive than many of our daily commutes when you think about it, plus if you've grown up anywhere south or east of RVA over the past few decades (which is something like half the Commonwealth), you've probably witnessed all the growth from Corolla on down…

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Double Decker, Fair Winds Brewing Co. (Lorton, VA)

  2 months ago     163 Views     Comments Off on Double Decker, Fair Winds Brewing Co. (Lorton, VA)  

Those beer mariners over at Fair Winds have been steaming along for some time now with all their nautical puns.  They may have just tacked through their third lap, but they've been firing well across the bow since the beginning.  If you haven't paid attention to us, the Virginia Craft Brewers Guild, or the Great American Beer Festival, what will it take to get you on board with these guys?  They barged onto the scene with one of the largest production facilities in the Commonwealth, and now have strong berths not just in NoVA but also RVA and the 757.…

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