Visiting the Best Breweries in Asheville, NC
My interest in craft beer is growing, so on recent overnight in Asheville, NC I wanted check out some of their breweries. Since I’m still a newbie to the beer scene, and my friends love hops and I don’t, I needed help narrowing down the many options. My friend, who recently launched Brews Reviewed, came through with some great recommendations.
Every place we went was a big hit with everyone. If I knew beer could taste this good, I might never have gotten into wine.
Our first stop was the Funkatorium (owned by Wicked Weed) which specializes in sour ales. I love sour ales and theirs were amazing!
They offer a preset flight which is what we started with — two farmhouse ales and two sours — all were outstanding. Then we moved on to sharing reasonably priced goblets in order to try as many as possible. Their Silencio coffee sour is by far the best coffee beer I’ve ever had.
I could have happily stayed there all night and felt like I’d seen the best of Asheville beer. 🙂
But I was vetoed, so after checking out the giant barrels in the back we walked the a block over to Burial Beer Co. and managed to grab a table in the back room. The front bar area was crowded at 7PM on the day after Christmas, but mostly because it was a little too chilly for their capacious patio area.
We started with a sampler of 4 beers and the Ooolong Tea Saison I was anxious to try.
Unbelievably, it was their Massacre and Hawbill IPAs I liked best. Hoppy, but so well balanced even I found them enjoyable. The tea saison was good but not amazing. Once again, it was a place I could have hung out for the rest of the evening, but the kitchen wasn’t open on Mondays and we were ready for dinner.
At this point in the evening, we could probably only appreciate one more brewery so we regretfully passed Bhramari Brewhouse (highly recommended by Brews Reviewed) and headed straight to Wicked Weed, which was packed at 8:30PM on a holiday Monday. There was a 30 minute wait for a seat in the upstairs dining room, we decided to try our luck downstairs. It was also crowded but we managed to score a small table by the bathrooms with an excellent view of the tasting board.
They didn’t offer tasting flights, but everything we got was amazing. Particularly the Milk & Cookies Stout. I was skeptical, but having liked the Silencio coffee sour at Funkatorium, I wanted to see what they could do. They did amazing things. It wasn’t sweet, but it did taste a lot like good cookies — slightly chocolate, lots of baking spices. Mmmmmm.
The menu downstairs was basic bar food, but really good basic bar food. Some of the best boiled peanuts I’ve ever had. Flavored with IPA and sumac and a nice firm texture, no squishy grossness. The nachos were also awesome.
We had a morning tour at Biltmore, so we couldn’t stay long, but Wicked Weed was amazing and I’d go back in a heartbeat.
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