What’s happening, craft beer lovers of RVA?! Welcome to this week’s RVA On Tap, RVA Magazine’s weekly column for all your craft beer-related events, releases, festivals, and all the booze news your hearts desire.
If you missed the last column, you can check that out here. Our kegs are overflowing with news this week, from beer releases to festivals, events, and other cool happenings around town — so hold on to your mugs!
Last week, we started jumping into some holiday brews and hit up some awesome festivals, too. Now it’s almost……Thanksgiving! Hallelujah! As much as I hate the history of this holiday, man do I love the food. And the family, and the love, and everything about the holidays. What’s your favorite yearly celebration? Thanksgiving is definitely mine. Hit up the comments on our Facebook post and tell me yours. I’d love to hear what gets you guys excited every year!
Do you have any Black Friday plans? …….Do they consist of avoiding every store in town and drinking about it? Me too! Thank god for The Veil, because they get it. To cater to the anti-BF lines crowd, they’re releasing their Bourbon White Russian Hornswoggler on the special day. One: Anything that sounds like a White Russian is my favorite thing of all time. Two: I can’t wait to drink beer at home while everyone else stands out in the cold and wrestles each other at Walmart. Count me out, and The Veil, count me in!
More awesome brews from The Veil on Friday come with Dark Daze, an annual fest for Black Friday with tons of awesome releases and brews on sale. Even Even More More is a 13% Double-Maple Imperial Stout (YUM!) and it’s rich, roasty, and sweet with maple flavor. There is nothing I love more than a maple beer, so I definitely want to give this one a try! Lord Whangdoodle (nice) is a unique Imperial Stout with a sappy, sticky-sugary sweetness. It’s got honey, cinnamon, vanilla, liqueur, baklava and candied-orange peel. Maple BA Whangdoodle (that word is never going to not-be funny) and Honey BA Whangdoodle are two more variations, one with layered maple flavor + chocolate character, and the other aged in honey bourbon barrels for over a year.
There are a TON more awesome beers coming up at The Veil on Friday. That’s only the beginning. This sounds like a blast, and most-definitely a much better way to spend Black Friday than out in the cold!
Over at Hardywood, the party continues on Saturday with their Apple Brandy Gingerbread Stout release. Hardywood has been releasing awesome GBS beers all month, and man, I’ve never had a Hardywood beer I didn’t like. Apple Brandy “blends in perfect harmony with the cinnamon-kissed oak staves of the apple brandy barrels,” and has notes of honey, chocolate, and fragrant cinnamon. It’s 10.4%, and it sounds delicious! If tomorrow is Thanksgiving, then Hardywood, I’m thankful for you.
If you need to keep the party flowing even further past the holiday (I don’t blame you), hit up the brewery on Sunday for their post-Thanksgiving dance party with Afro-Zen. Global grooves, cold beer, and good friends — what more could you need?
Ooooooooh, I! Want! This! Center of the Universe always knows how to hit me right in the tastebud feels and they even got the mean humor down this time, too. Mmmmm. This Friday, Shut Up releases and it’s all my favorite things in one — brewed to drink in front of your obnoxious family members over the holidays and give them the little reminder everyone needs: shut your pie hole, and eat some pie. There’s always plenty around at Thanksgiving. Shut Up is aged in Woodford Reserve bourbon barrels with cold brew coffee, then blended together and full of chocolate, coffee, vanilla and bourbon. I am so happy about all these winter beers, I can’t say it enough. Cold weather flavors RULE, y’all!
The Veil wasn’t the only one to get their post-Thanksgiving plans in order the right way this year. Isley Brewing Company is also celebrating the dreaded Black Friday in the most-awesome of ways this year, with their release of Apple Brown Betty. Holy wow, this sounds tasty. The English nut brown ale has an addition of Blue Bee Cider fresh-pressed apple juice (drool), caramel, buttery cinnamon, and mulling spices for an All-American apple pie flavor profile. It’s a rich, dark mahogany color with a cream-tinted head, and this 6.6% beer is 100% on my to-do list.
Over at Three Notch’d RVA Collab House, Masterclass is new at the brewery. It’s a Saison-infused herbal recipe with spiced notes just in time for the holidays. If you didn’t make it out to the release party in time, you can grab a crowler for your family dinner, or “watching the game at home in your stretchy pants” if you go too hard on Thanksgiving.
In more Black-Friday-news, Strangeways is hosting a Black Friday Local Market for all your small business needs. Shop local! Richmond really does a great job of supporting its own people, and here’s your chance to do it and drink some tasty brews at the same time. Head on over to Strangeways this Friday and get a jump on all the holiday shopping (and beat the lines!) with one of our favorite spots.
Kindred Spirit is in the spirit this holiday. For Movember (men’s health awareness month), they’re kicking off some special events to recognize the men growing beards and moustaches to raise awareness. There’ll be live music by Bobby Baine, prizes, giveaways, and a special Movembeer Beer release at the party. It’s going down on Sunday after Thanksgiving, so boys and all beard-growing people, resist the family pressure from Mom to trim that beautiful facial hair this holiday, and go treat yourself with a prize for sticking it out!
That’s it for this week’s RVA On Tap! As your new weekly columnist, I’m here to take all your beer releases, event info, ideas and questions. If you’re a brewer, send me your release info at [email protected], and if you’re a beer enthusiast, drop me a line anytime to talk booze. Catch y’all next week!