Monthly Archives: August 2014

Two Years In The Making: Hardywood First Wild Ale, Snapdragon Soars Next Saturday

Remember some two years ago when we were enjoying our first sips of Virginia Blackberry? Well, Hardywood had been secretly and quietly planning their first wild ale.

Maybe you remember this photo of head brewer Brian at Barboursville Vineyards steam sanitizing two of their wine barrels.

There was no indication what was going into those barrels but now I know that the first batch of Blackberry found a resting place in these red wine barrels. We are so used to instant gratification these days, it is hard to imagine waiting two years to release a beer.

I know a lot of you have been waiting for Hardywood to release just such a beer.  It will just be a little while longer now.  Hardywood Snapdragon will be released next Saturday September 6th starting at 2pm with 375-ml bottle sales for on and off premises consumption. Only about 1000 bottles were produced so sales will be limited to 4/guest.

Credit: Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

Credit: Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

Spurred by the natural flora of our region, the beautifully tart character of Hardywood Snapdragon is achieved through extended interplay with wild yeasts and acid forming bacteria for over a year of conditioning in Virginia red wine barrels.

Enjoy music from Exebelle & The Rusted Cavalcade as they fill the last moments of summer with country-rock inspired by Virginia’s folk tradition starting at 6pm.

Head over to the Facebook event for more information and updates.

Strangeways Presents The Fruits of Their Labor With Mekong Today

Strangeways Fruits of LaborJust in time for Labor Day, Strangeways is releasing two brand new beers, Still Life With Peaches Saison and Eternal Youth Biére d’Abricot,  today Thursday August 28th starting at 4pm. Along with their new beers, Strangeways will re-release two of their most popular beers, Wampus Cat Triple IPA and Überlin Berliner Weiss. There will also be bountiful fruit-inspired Curiosities emerging through the weekend.

Still Life With Peaches Saison
This is the story of a brewer who walks into the National Gallery of Art while in Washington D.C. for SAVOR to gain inspirational ideas for new beers to brew. As he admires the bountiful works of art, he settles into a calming bliss that leads effortlessly into a trance-like state of utter tranquility. His mind expands as he strolls and peruses the masterpieces before him. In time, he is lured to a painting that quietly yet assuredly speaks to him and, posthaste, he becomes infatuated with its display of simplicity coexisting with great detail. What better artist to settle on but one whose vision evoked the same response from great masters such as Matisse and Picasso, who remarked that Paul Cézanne “is the father of us all”. Still life artwork was prevalent in this French Post-Impressionist painter’s repertoire. The result of this inspiration is a Saison that blends a classic Saison DuPont yeast with yellow peaches added during fermentation. The elixir is then aged in oak barrels to enhance its complexity. “A work of art which did not begin in emotion is not art”. -Cézanne
4.3% ABV~15 IBU

Eternal Youth Bière d’Abricot
In search of healing waters and gold, 16th century Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon traveled to what is now Florida. Many have followed in his footsteps, as human kind perpetually seeks out magical potions to restore their youth. While consuming fresh, local beers such as Eternal Youth Bière d’Abricot will not turn time eternal, it may help one more effectively reflect on the good times experienced throughout life. And within these encapsulated memories, one can live in a certain utopia of Eternal Youth. This French farmhouse style incorporates a bière de grade yeast as well as apricots, which are purported to promote health and long life. Then this elixir of life is garded in oak barrels to execute complexity in this sessionable, late-summer delectation. Bathe in this fountain of juvenescence, and discover your Eternal Youth.
5.2% ABV~15 IBU

But wait, there’s more!  In addition to the releases at Strangeways, Mekong will have their own selection of Strange curiousities.

Here is what they will be tapping:

  • Überlin Berliner Weiss
  • To Peach His An — fresh Virginia peach Berliner Weisse
  • What Is Peach in German? — Strangeways sour peach variant
  • Heiss Señorita — Mango Tango Style; spicy mango Berliner Weiss
  • Still Life with Peaches — Wood Aged Belgian Style Saison with Peach
  • Put Some Peach on that Peach — amped up peach variant
  • Eternal Youth Biére d’Abricot — Wood Aged Biere de Garde with Apricot
  • Vaassup I’m Bruno! — Sour apricot blend
  • Wampus Cat Triple IPA

So head out and taste what An Mekong, Brandon Tolbert, and Mike Hiller have concocted in the lab.  Strangeways will have special hours of Noon to 9pm  Sunday and Monday for Labor Day weekend and will close out the “steal the vessel” special they’ve been running all month on Labor Day. 

Check for updates at Facebook events at both Strangeways and Mekong, here and here, respectively.

Social 52 Celebrating One Year With Backyard Virginia Beer Party Tomorrow

Social 52 AnnivHead out and celebrate one year with Social 52 tomorrow Saturday August 23rd from noon to 6pm:

Can you believe we’ve been here for almost a year now? Thank you for being so supportive of us Richmond!

We wanted to invite all of RVA out to our 1 year anniversary party in hopes that you’ll come celebrate with us!

And what better way to celebrate our 1 Year Anniversary and Virginia Craft Beer Month than to come and drink some local brews with us?!

We’ve just confirmed two additional breweries!! We are now partnering with 8 local VA breweries (listed below) that will be on scene at the event offering pints and samples of their most popular brews.

1) Bold Rock Hard Cider
2) Isley Brewery Company
3) Lost Rhino Brewing Company
4) Devils Backbone Brewery
5) Blue Mountain Brewery
6) Parkway Brewing Company
7) Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
8) Strangeways Brewing

The event will feature live music from local bands and DJs, to include Kung Pao Quartet and DJ MassFX (check them out on FB).

We’ll have some of your favorite Social52 food and sign-ups for our First Annual CORNHOLE Tournament will start around noon.

We will also be giving away prizes all day and our Summmer Gas Grill Giveaway winner will be announced as well! (must be present to win)

The event is 21 and up and doors open at noon!

–$5 entry gets you 2 free samples and a commemorative souvenir Social52 cup!

***Entrance to the backyard party will be through the FRONT DOOR of Social52 and we’ll have one of our employees at the back door ready to let you into the backyard party once you pay your way! We look forward to seeing everyone on August 23rd!

Eat local. Drink local. Be SOCIAL Richmond!

Head over to the Facebook event for more information and updates..

Social 52
2619 W Main St
Richmond, Virginia 23220

Celebrate The Virginia Oyster Trail With Farmhouse & Wild Virginia Ales At Rappahannock Thursday

Credit: Andrew Cothern

Credit: Andrew Cothern

Earlier today Governor McAuliffe named Virginia as the oyster capital of the east coast with seven flavors of oysters found in seven different regions.  These regions make up the newly named Virginia Oyster Trail along the Chesapeake Bay.  The trail will serve as a major tourism development project to connect travelers to Virginia oyster purveyors, raw bars, and restaurants, and the watermen culture throughout Coastal Virginia, the Northern Neck, Middle Peninsula and Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

“Virginia produces the best oysters in the world and as the oyster industry continues to grow, we want to let it be known that Virginia is also the Oyster Capital of the East Coast,” said Governor McAuliffe.  “In addition to growing, harvesting and selling the best oysters, our watermen are providing good jobs in their communities, generating revenue and tax dollars throughout their region, and helping improve the environment of the Chesapeake Bay as their oysters filter millions of gallons of water each day.”

Credit: Virginia Tourism

Credit: Virginia Tourism

Rappahannock River Oyster Co farms four different varieties of oysters, each from a different region:

  • Rappahannocks (the 1899 original) from Topping, VA — sweet, buttery full bodied taste with a refreshingly clean, crisp finish
  • Stingrays from Ware Neck, VA — sweet and mildly briny with a clean, crisp finish
  • Olde Salts from Chincoteague Bay, VA — bold sea-side brininess with a smooth, clean follow-through
  • Yorks from the York River — sweet and buttery with a mild brininess

McAuliffe also declared November as Virginia Oyster Month.

If you are like me, you can’t wait over two months to celebrate (read: devour) Virginia oysters. And you won’t have to!

Head over to Rappahannock Restaurant Thursday August 21st starting at 4pm as they tap some Virginia farmhouse and wild ales.

Here are a few of the beers to be tapped:

  • Ardent Craft Ales Saison
  • Lickinghole Creek Rosemary Saison
  • Strangeways Wild Wallonian Dawn Saison
  • Three Brothers Virginia Wild Blend
  • Triple Crossing Single Hop Saison

There will be some other surprises in store so grab a beer and down a dozen oysters or two.

RVA BrewBQ Returns For Its Third Year This Sunday

RVA BrewBQ logo

Once known as RVA-B-Que, Richmond’s summer beer and barbecue festival returns this Sunday August 17th from Noon to 5pm as RVA BrewBQ at 17th Street Farmers’ Market.  The new name changes the beer focus to our now eleven Richmond area breweries.

Beer samples are $2 each; full pours are $6.

Satisfy your thirst with these Richmond brews:

Ardent Craft Ales — Richmond Center of the Universe — Ashland
Saison Ray Ray’s Pale Ale
Honey Ginger Oktoberfest
Extra Billy’s — Midlothian Hardywood — Richmond
Double Deke Black IPA Singel
My Only Weiss Bohemian Pilsner
Isley Brewing — Richmond Legend — Richmond
Blue Hefner Hefeweizen Oktoberfest
Choosy Mother Peanut Butter Porter Pilsner
Lickinghole Creek — Goochland Midnight — Goochland
Creator Hoppelbock Granite Oatmeal Stout
Saison Virginia Midway
Rusty Beaver — Ladysmith Strangeways — Richmond
Roy’s Big Bad Brown Ale Albino Monkey
Bucktooth IPA Woodbooger
Triple Crossing — Richmond
Kill the Lights Black IPA

All this local beer plus food from an array of Virginia barbecue producers including Richmond favorites like Halligan’s, Buz and Ned’s, Alamo, and Extra Billy’s.

Head over to the Facebook event for more information and take a look at the important reminders below.

If You Need Me, I’ll Be At Mekong Drinking Cigar City Beer Tonight

Cigar City Brewing is coming to town tonight Thursday August 14th with a RV packed full of their ambassadors and a ton of their beers.

Their party bus will stop at Mekong to throw the largest Cigar City tap takeover Richmond has ever seen.  Mekong will tap twenty two beers in total with many of them debuting for the first time in the city.

Here are the beers to be tapped starting at 4pm:

Mekong Restaurant
6004 W Broad St
Richmond, VA 23230