For beer enthusiasts, one of the best traditions of the craft beer movement is visiting breweries and sampling their beers in their own tasting rooms. This tradition has spawned the publication of numerous guidebooks describing the breweries and brewpubs in various states and regions. These guides are usually written for areas with a heavy concentrations of breweries and are an invaluable resource for planning vacations and serious beer hunting.
If you needed any evidence that craft brewing in the Carolinas is exploding, here it is in our own guidebook: Beer Lover’s The Carolinas. This book, released in April, is a guidebook for breweries, brewpubs and beer bars in South and North Carolina.
The book is written by Daniel Hartis, a beer blogger and part-time beer writer who is a native and resident of Charlotte. In 314 pages, he describes the 67 breweries in both states along with all of the brewpubs and many beer-centric bars. The cut-off date for brewery entries was apparently several months ago, and thus some of the recently opened breweries such as Brewery 85 in Greenville and River Rat here in Columbia are not featured; however, Hartis did include them in a listing of breweries in planning — a staggering 20 in North Carolina and 8 in South Carolina.
The book’s publisher has produced several similar guides for other regions, which is apparent from its attractive layout that is uncluttered and is easy to read. The descriptions of the establishments are logically arranged, making it useful for planning trips. Each state is divided into regions, and the breweries and brewpubs in those areas are grouped together.
The author is clearly a beer enthusiast, though he does not have a technical background in brewing or homebrewing, thus his approach is light but informative and interesting. He has the ability to pack a lot of good information in a short space. His treatment of the two states is evenhanded without regional bias. Do not expect to find any criticism or critiques in this work — it is not a critical review. The brief history of each brewery and its founders provides some insight into what makes each one tick and adds to the appreciation of their work.
As an extra benefit, Hartis includes homebrew recipes for some of the beers featured in the guide as well as recipes for signature dishes from some of the brewpubs. The recipe for Hunter-Gather’s ESB Pimento Cheese spread is included, and that just might be worth the price of the book on its own.
As I read through this guide, I was struck by the fact that the overwhelming majority of the breweries are less than four years old. This growth in craft brewing in the Carolinas is remarkable and the passion of those who have jumped into this difficult business is evident from the descriptions of their backgrounds. I hope that as the number of breweries increase, each will add new converts to craft beer. This is critical to their survival.
Amazon is the primary outlet for this excellent guide with a discounted price of $14.66. Every beer enthusiast in this area should get this book — then plan weekend trips to the various areas of the Carolinas to enjoy fresh craft beer made by artisans who are passionate about what they do.
New IPA on the Scene
Dog Fish Head entered the Columbia market almost one year ago. A glaring omission from the available beers has been its famous 60 Minute IPA. For now, either by accident or design, this beer is available at major retailers. This IPA is 6 percent ABV and hops are continually added for the 60 minutes of the boiling step of the brewing process. The resulting beer is elegant and refined, brimming with tasty hop flavor, juicy malt and ample bitterness — a beautiful beer indeed. Cheers!
Make Your Own Beer and Wine!
Come get started on your “liquid hobby” and help us celebrate our 46th year in the Columbia area. Bet Mar Liquid Hobby Shop: 736 St. Andrews Road.
Happy Hour and Sushi Specials All Week
Red Bowl in Lexington now has great early bird and late night sushi specials 7 days a week, as well as 99-cent kids meals on Saturdays! Click here for special information and hours.
Relaxation, Pain Management, and Stress Relief
Licensed massage therapist Allison Morris of AMR Massage offers 50% off your first session and every 5th session free of charge. Click here for location, hours, and more information.
Brew Pub Site Available
3520 Augusta Road, West Columbia. Click for more information.
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Free Times is looking for a highly organized, detail-oriented self-starter to assist in gathering material from advertisers, coordinating between the sales and production departments, and handling routine clerical tasks. Must be proficient on a Mac, able to conduct business via phone, email, text, Dropbox, social media platforms and face to face while under deadline in a fast-paced, sometimes distracting work environment. The position requires the ability to multitask, excellent oral and written communication skills, and solid experience in quickly learning new computer programs. This is a full time position with benefits. Send a cover letter, resume and salary expectation to email@example.com.
U.S. Security Associates
Now hiring immediately for armed and unarmed security officers. WE TRAIN YOU! Columbia & surrounding areas. ussecurityassociates.com
Wing Zone is now hiring for experienced delivery drivers, cooks & cashiers. Apply in person @ 132 Assembly St. or call 803-933-9464.