I was reading Issue 70 of the Beer Advocate recently and had one of those “Ah, yeah! I should do that” moments. The editors, the Alström Brothers, wrote a quick piece about the Great American Beer Fest and the need for brewers to be the ones serving the beer.
It’s common for beer fest booths to be manned by volunteers and the Alströms take a bit of umbrage with that. The question they pose is this: if the brewer isn’t going to show up, why should I?
I’m sure you’ll agree that it’s not always easy to take the time away from your work to go man a booth at a fest, but I do see their point. And that leads me to today's little missive: Do the tours and shake their hands.
Beer is a social drink that is best consumed in social settings with old friends and new. To quote the Alströms, “There’s more to beer than beer,” and that should be even more true when it comes to trying new beers from the brewery down the street. I don’t get as much time as I’d like to sit on a barstool and chat about the latest brew on tap or to do brewery tours, but it’s important to remember that all of this is happening around us and all we need to do is get out the door and do it. Here’s a list of South Carolina (mostly Charleston) breweries that offer tours. Go! Shake their hands and talk to them about their beers.
Brewery: Coast Brewing Company
Location: 1250 2nd Street N, North Charleston (Navy Yard)
Tour Hours: Thurs 4-7; Sat 11-2
Brewery: Frothy Beard Brewing (wicked new, but they know their stuff!)
Location: 7358 Peppermill Parkway, North Charleston
Tour Hours: TBD
Brewery: Holy City Brewing
Location: 4155 C Dorchester Road, North Charleston
Tour Hours: M-Tues 4-6; W-F 4-7; Sat 12-4
Brewery: Palmetto Brewing Company
Location: 289 Huger Street, Charleston
Tour Hours: W & F 3-5; Open House last Wed of each month
Go out and visit your local brewer. It’s something that I should do more of, too.
P.S.: If you’re interested in doing a brew tour and want to go with more than just yourself, reach out to the Charleston Brew Crew on their site, Twitter, or the Book of the Face. Gerry will pull together a group from time to time and it’s always good people.
*Above photo of Holy City Tasting Room courtesy of Growinnc via Flickr