American Craft Beer Week gets tapped in Charleston (update: EVO, Westbrook)

Image by Flickr user James Cridland

Update May 18th:  Two more events to add to the party!

EVO Pizza in North Charleston will be pairing their locally-sourced eats with beers from Maine's Allagash Brewing Company on Wednesday, May 18th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.  Southeast Allagash rep, and Charleston beersman-about-town, Les Addis will be playing host.

Westbrook Brewing will be adding to their normal Friday (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.) and  Saturday (12 p.m. to 4 p.m.) cask schedule to provide a cask for every tasting this weekend, including Thursday (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.)!  Here's the scoop from their newsletter:

In celebration of American Craft Beer week we'll be tapping 3 casks this weekend – one for each tour. Thursday's cask is our IPA dry-hopped in the cask with Falconer's Flight, a new, super citrusy hop blend. On Friday, we'll have a Belgian Pale cask dry-hopped with Kent Golding and white & black peppercorns, and on Saturday we tap another IPA cask with 3 different hop varieties – Centennial, Cascade, and Amarillo. Come on out! 

First reporting: Once a year, craft beer drinkers nationwide find (another) occasion to celebrate their love, drink in solidatiry, and proselytize to others.  It's that time again, as American Craft Beer Week officially runs from May 16 to May 22.

The week was officially set by the U.S. Brewers' Association in 2006 as a concentrated replacement for what was July's National Beer Month.  ACBW has since grown exponentially, been officially recognized by Congress, and this year will feature events in every state in the union.

There are a plethora of delicious local options for those who want in on the fun:

Closed for Business will be holding a series of pint nights highlighting selections from a different brewery each night, most of which are regional:

Tuesday 5/17 - Abita Brewing Company, Abita Springs, LA

  • Purple Haze (American wheat w/ raspberries, 4.2% ABV, C+, 19)
  • Select Triple Haze (American wheat w/ raspberries, 8% ABV, C)
  • Restoration (American pale ale, 5% ABV, B-, 38)
  • Turbodog (English-style brown ale, 5.6% ABV, B, 73)

Wednesday - Highland Brewing Company, Asheville, NC

  • Cattail Peak Wheat (American wheat, 4.7% ABV, B, 48)
  • Gaelic Ale (Amber ale, 5.8% ABV, B+, 83)
  • Oatmeal Porter (American porter, 5.8% ABV,  B+, 93)

Thursday - Brooklyn Brewery, Brooklyn, NY

  • Lager (5.2% ABV, B+ 90)
  • Summer Ale (English-style pale ale, 5% ABV, B, 48)
  • Brown Ale (5.6% ABV, B, 89)

Friday - RJ Rockers Brewing, Spartanburg, SC

  • Son of a Peach (American wheat w/ peaches, 5.8% ABV, B, 68)
  • Bell RInger (American strong ale, 8.5% ABV, B+, 72)

Charleston Beer Exchange is using the occassion to make Rare Beer Tuesday even more rare than normal.  At 5 p.m., the boys are putting a keg of COAST Brewing Buffalo Trace Barrel-Aged Blackbeerd Imperial Stout (9.3% ABV, A-, 98) on the growler station.  This very limited variation of Blackbeerd was originally released last summer, and the keg has been aging ever since.  

Fresh "BT Blackbeerd' (as the geeks abbreviate it) was a bold experience, with pronounced bourbon notes muscling in on the dense, deep roast that is Blackbeerd.  Barrel-aged stouts like this tend to get even better with a bit of age.  The alcohol burn subsides a bit, and the bourbon goes from a booze-forward force to a more subtle and rich accompaniment to the stout.  As if that wasn't enough, ALL growler fills will be 10% off from Tuesday morning until the store closes Sunday.

Total Wine & More in West Ashley will be hosting Chris Winn from Palmetto Brewing for a tasting from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on May 19th. For event details courtesy of Pearlstine Distributors, click here.

COAST Brewing is set to close out the week with a suped-up version of their regular Saturday tours and tastings.  From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 21st you can enjoy said tastings, live music from Folkgrass, and the killer breakfast offerings of The Little Blue Brunch Truck, including their oft-beer-infused Diggity Doughnuts.  What's more, there will be two especially awesome beers for your enjoyment.

Bottles of Bourbon Barrel-Aged Old Nuptial Barleywine (11% ABV, A) will be for sale in limited quantities per person.  This beer was originally brewed along with Team CBX to celebrate the wedding of one Mr. Scott "Handlebars" Shor.  That was about two years ago, and the huge barleywine has been sitting in bourbon barrels ever since, save a small amount that made an appearance at Brewvival.

Also, The Boy King Double IPA (9.2% ABV, A, 98)  is back for (again, limited) growler fills.  What a thing of beauty.  This will be the fourth appearance of the Citra-hop soaked seasonal sensation.  While it's always been amazing, the third edition really caught fire with beer geeks.  That particular version saw the beer shoot up to the #58 spot on BeerAdvocate's Top Beers on Planet Earth list, where it still sits at #94.  Expect a sizeable demand for this, but rest assured that the hype is, in fact, justified.

So there you have it, folks.  If we've missed any other events just leave a comment and we'll update this puppy.  In the meantime, check out our most excellent #beer landing page, keep an eye on the #ACBW hashtag on the Twitters, and don't forget the local standard, #chsbeer.  Have a safe & happy week!