If you love beer and you find yourself in Charlotte, North Carolina, go directly to The Flying Saucer. That’s what I did, upon landing in Charlotte on March 21. My sister Jen picked me up at the airport and we drove straight to the Saucer for lunch and North Carolina brews.
The Flying Saucer was holding a special event for the North Carolina Brews Guild to celebrate Charlotte Craft Beer Week. There were 26 different North Carolina brews on tap for $2.75 a pint.
I went for the flights — five 5-ounce pours — so I could sample from several of the breweries. I tasted the:
- Catawba Valley White Zombie Wit – pale yellow citrusy Belgian White
- Catawba Valley Farmer Ted’s Cream Ale – smooth ale
- Pisgah Pale Ale – spicy, malty American Pale Ale
- Asheville Brewing Shiva IPA – malty IPA with a hoppy finish
- Big Boss Little Larry’s Belgian Pale Ale – a tasty Belgian
- Big Boss D’Icer Dunkelweizen – not your classic dunkel
- Green Man IPA – orange citrus flavor
- Green Man Porter – chocolate malt flavor
- Foothills Torch Pilsner – standard pilsner
- Foothills Seeing Double IPA – strong IPA
- Foothills Red – copper, malty flavor, smooth finish
- Lonerider Shotgun Betty – hefeweizen
- Mother Earth Endless River Kolsch – your basic Kolsch
The Flying Saucer had a great beer selection, fun service, and a funky feel. We sat outside on the patio and enjoyed some pub grub with the beers. I knew I was in North Carolina when all of the flat screens tuned into the NASCAR race. We wanted to watch the Maryland vs. Michigan State tournament game so we drove downtown to the Fox and Hound, where we found the basketball game and Red Oak Amber Lager.
After the crushing ending of the Maryland game, we stumbled out of the Fox and the Hound and into the rain. Across the street was Charlotte’s Rock Bottom, and I couldn’t resist venturing inside. I tried their seasonal selections: an Irish Red and a solid IPA.
My sister and her friend Meg showed me a great time in Charlotte! And later that day, I hung out with my old college friend at his place and the surrounding bar scene at Lake Norman. It was an epic day, as I sampled 16 local North Carolina brews.