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 this week with beer releases and festivals, events, and other cool happenings around town — so hold on to your mugs!
This week, we’re kicking off the beginning of Richmond’s hot-hot summer days with tons of beer releases to cool on down. With Southern dessert flavors like Peach and Blueberry cobbler beers to pair with Pina Colada and Banana Split classics, River City brewers are telling us to treat ourselves. And lawd, we will.
Oh boy, the Southern girl in me is drooling. Hardywood Park Craft Brewery is dropping Mamaw’s Mean Cobbler in a can release this Friday, and if it tastes anything like the cobblers of the Mamaws I’ve known in my life, we’ve got a reason to celebrate, my friends. This Belgian-style Tripel is a new variation off Hardywood’s Peach Tripel, and this one’s packed with vanilla, cinnamon, coconut, and sugary milk additions to marry beer with the classic tastes of a peach cobbler fresh from your grandma’s kitchen. YUM! This one’s going on my to-do list, y’all. Sign me up.
The summer seasonals are on their way back to Legend Brewing Company, and their own favorite brew is coming back soon. They just started up their sneak peeks of Z DAM over the weekend, brewed with fresh lime and ginger to add a light body and clean-malt flavor to the pale, golden ale. It’s best-served on the patio in the sunshine or to toast a successful descent through the rapids of the Mighty James, according to Legend (nice)… which is suited extra well, because I spent one of my first Legendary nights with a group of kayakers who had just conquered the river and came out to the deck to celebrate. With a balance of late kettly hops and ginger, orange, and lime flavors in the boil, Z DAM brings in a zestiness and refreshing taste to summertime in Richmond.
The Sleaze is coming to Strangeways. This Saturday, grab a taste of Sleazestack, the brewery’s first-ever can release. This New England IPA with Lactose hits in at 7.3% ABV and all the can releases are part of their “Parody Project,” with every new release coming out with special labels. Be sure to collect them all — the next one up will be Vegan Vampyre following this week’s fresh can.
In another release the same day, Strangeways is dropping Albino Monkey Wheat Ale in three new additive flavors: Pina Colada, Blueberry Cobbler, and Banana Split. I’m a sucker for a banana split, so this one’s definitely on my list!
Are you a mom? Are you celebrating a mom? Are you not a mom or celebrating a mom but just want an excuse to go get some brunch and day drink? Awesome! If you’re none of those things, I can’t help you. If you are, Center of the Universe can.
On Sunday, take yourself or your mama or whoever suits your fancy out to COTU’s Mother’s Day Brunch, set up to give all the moms a day off and treat them to a full day in the sun with Beer Bloody Marys and MOMosas, plus a delicious brunch by Freekin’ Rican, Richmond’s fav Puerto Rican food truck.
If you’re celebrating this holiday, be thankful to have the occasion. Don’t forget that many of your friends and loved ones might not have their mamas, or might not have the best mamas, so give them some extra love as well. Either way, happy May to you all, and happy start to sunny days finally sticking around!
YEET HAW, this is one I can get behind! Put your stash flasks away and day drink freely. Kindred Spirit Brewing Company is throwing a Day Drinkin’ Festival this Saturday with Fine Creek Brewing Company and Midnight Brewery, and I know damn near everyone in this drunken city can hold their own in one of these. Come friends, come family, come neighbors, they say, and join five breweries, a winery, and a cidery at the festival in a day of games like cornhole, ping pong, big jenga, giant beer pong(!!), and more. Does it get any better than that? Giant Jenga is definitely coming down on someone, and I hope I get to see it.
Happy birthday, Midnight Brewery! Our beloved Rockville folks are turning 7 this Saturday with a huge bash at their spot. All day long, you can hang at the brewery with Road Kill Roy and South of James playing sweet tunes — plus you can beat the heat, because the weather’s set to be cool & a little cloudy in the forecast. That’ll probably change 100 times between now and Saturday, but so far, it looks like the perfect chill day to hang in Rockville and celebrate our favorite outside-the-city brewers in good ol’ Virginian fashion. Drink up!
This Friday at their Fulton spot, be the first to taste Triple Crossing Beer’s Pathway Pils, a house pilsner perfectly-crafted with 100 percent German Pils malt. Known for their carefully-balanced ingredients, Triple Crossing filled this one with a sweet-honey-straw flavor of florals, lemons, and hay to create the soft-bodied lager. In their “constant state of refinement and evolution,” the brewers have named this recipe their house Pilsner (so you know it’s a special one).
Over the weekend on Star Wars Day, Steam Bell Beer Works dropped two new variants to add into their Extra Plenty Gose series, Red Wine Sangria and Margarita. I can’t tell you how many friends I’ve seen drinking Strawberitas and Limearitas down by the river in the summertime, so if you’re looking to get a little classier (and tastier, by far), Steam Bell’s got your gals right here. These two beauties bring the mixed-drink faves of the season into their beer, so you can ditch the gas station tallboys that overheat too fast and get in on somethin’ good.
Back on deck at Champion Brewing Company this week is a brewery favorite: Melee. Their Session IPA is cooked up with Citra and Amarillo hops, a classic combination to its style of brews that brings out the crisp, refreshing taste we’re all going for in an IPA. On the hottest of days — which, whether we like it or not, we’re gonna be in for a *lot* starting pretty soon — an IPA down the hatch tends to do the job.
After their perfect pet events starting off the month, Ardent Craft Ales is keeping the pup theme going with their Garden Pawty Adoption Event partnered with the Richmond SCPA on Saturday. If you’re looking for a furry addition to your household, join Ardent with Bingo Beer Co. and Courthouse Creek for local beer and giveaways, with vegan-friendly BBQ plates (rare and delicious) and an exclusive cider. The event’s going down in the beer garden of Lunch & Supper in Scott’s Addition, so grab your pup and head on over.
In more Mother’s Day celebrations, Intermission Beer Company has all the mom-miest things for your special lady’s holiday. With Beermosas, Bingo, and Books all day, you’ll get to win prizes in the game contests with cards free with your beer (or raise your odds with extras for 2 bucks), and all the proceeds are being donated to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation. They’re also starting up their very own Little Free Library for the day, so bring out your old favorites to donate and spread the love.
Fresh to the taps over at Stone Brewing Richmond is 2015 Double Bastard, an Imperial variety of one of their oldest, most well-known beers — and for me, a testament to what a bastard of a year 2015 was. This brew sounds a hell of a lot better than the year, and with its smooth, caramel-malty goodness, it’s a great addition to Stone’s draft list. If you haven’t made it out to give it a taste yet, it’s one that’s worth the trip.
Inspired by today’s cover image, I’ve decided to start publishing a #DogOfTheWeek in each beer column. You can submit photos of your own dogs kickin’ it with a cold one, or just enjoy the amusing pics I discover in the dark corners of the internet. I’d prefer to see your pretty pups, so let’s get that rolling, y’all.
That’s it for this week’s RVA On Tap! As your 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!