My recent three-day business trip to downtown Charlotte was highlighted by multiple visits to Carolina Ale House. The lively sports pub was in a perfect location — only a block away from my room at the Hilton. I went three times over three days and still didn’t put a dent in the 72-tap beer selection.
It was my first night in Charlotte, and I was focused on finding North Carolina brew. The Carolina Ale House beer menu offered plenty of options.
The beer menu offered several preset four-beer flights, and I ordered the “First in Flight” featuring four NC brews:
- Red Oak Lager, a Münich Old Style Lager (Whitsett, NC, 5.0%)
- Big Boss Bad Penny, a dark Brown Ale (Raleigh, NC, 5.5%)
- Foothills Peoples Porter, an English-style Robust Porter (Winston Salem, NC, 6.0%)
- Lonerider Shotgun Betty, a German-style Hefeweizen (Raleigh, NC, 5.8%)
After my flight, I had a pint of Woody & Wilcox, a hoppy American IPA from Charlotte’s NoDa Brewing Company (6.0%).
On nights two and three, I sampled several other local brews:
- NoDa Coco Loco, an American-style Robust Porter (Charlotte, NC, 6.2%)
- Natty Greene’s Southern Pale Ale, an American-style Pale Ale (Greensboro, NC, 5.2%)
- Lonerider Sweet Josie Brown, an American-style Brown Ale (Raleigh, NC, 6.1%)
- Highland Oatmeal Porter, brewed with “a judicious amount of flaked oatmeal” (Asheville, NC, 5.9%)
- Highland Gaelic Ale, an amber-colored American Ale (Asheville, NC, 5.6%)
- Foothills Hoppyum IPA, enjoyed a six-pack of this hoppy American-style IPA (Winston Salem, NC, 6.2%, 70 IBU)
- Birdsong Higher Ground, a classic West Coast-style IPA (Charlotte, NC, 7.0%)
- Birdsong Carolina Common, this session beer is inspired by California Common (Charlotte, NC, 4.4%)
Not only did I savor Carolina beer on this trip, but I also savored Carolina BBQ, which is my favorite BBQ in the country. I had dinners of pulled pork tacos, beef brisket nachos, and a traditional pulled pork sandwich topped with slaw.
Between the 12 different NC brews and the Carolina BBQ prepared three ways, I enjoyed quite the Carolina culinary adventure.