Beer tastings from West Virginia Craft Beer Week

There’s something about getting to sample a bunch of West Virginia-made beers that makes me happy. I remember all too well when you could rarely find any West Virginia beer on tap in Charleston.

Beer Week 2017

This week two local beer outlets offered lots of West Virginia beer selections and the products were well-received. The Brick Oven Bistro (T&M Meat) in Cross Lanes and the Recovery Sports Bar in Charleston both featured beers from WV breweries.

Brick Oven Bistro proprietor Ron Cole traveled the state to collect beers  for WV Craft Beer Week.

Having so many WV beers together on tap at the same time offered a rare opportunity to compare and contrast the quality of our local brewer’s art. Everyone was especially excited to see so many beers from some of our state’s newest breweries. Overall, the beers were pretty darn good. Is there room for improvement, sure in some cases, but folks found a bunch of them delightful for their styles.

beer week 2017
Representatives from West Virginia breweries at Recovery Sports Bar in Charleston. Left to right, are Casey Gossett of Parkersburg Brewing, Stephen Dilettosso of Mountain State Brewing, Shelly Hartley of Recovery Sports Bar, Nate Herrold of Bridge Brew Works, and Sam Mauzy of Big Timber Brewing.

A collection of our local craft beer club members sampled many of them. Here’s what we liked and recommend.

IPAs at Brick Oven/T&M:

  • RK Double from Weathered Ground Brewery. Well-made double IPA. Lightly malty, solid hop flavors.
  • The Loud from Bad Shepherd Beer. Plenty of hop and malt flavors in great balance. A great beer with food.
  • Bewildered Hippie from Stumptown. A more in-your-face hopping but so much fun to drink.
  • Haggard from Weathered Ground. A modern American-style IPA with bright tropical fruit hop aroma and flavor. Balanced bitterness.

Stouts at Brick Oven/T&M:

  • Old Oak Stout from Berkeley Springs Brewing. Nice chocolatey roast aroma with a bit of oak woodiness. Nicely put together.
  • Broad Shoulders Stout from Short Story Brewing. this brew had great roasted malt and chocolate aroma and flavor. Good body. Dry finish.
  • Enniskillen Dry Irish Stout from Weathered Ground Brewery. A lighter styled dry stout with attractive roasted malt aroma.

WV Beer at Recovery:

  • Forest Fest by BigTimber Brewing. So fresh, luscious and tasty. Endearing maltiness. Get some now.
  • Wheeling Pisner by Wheeling Brewing Company. Light and crisp. A good American-style pilsner.
  • Cold Trail Ale by Mountain State. This fresh batch of blonde ale was drinking nicely. Lightly malty, somewhat Kölsch-lke.
  • Mountain Momma Pale Ale by Bridge Brew Works.  A beer that seems to sit between English and American style pale ales. Easy drinking, not too hoppy.
  • Nitro Porter by Big Timber Brewing. Their regular porter is a solid brew, but putting it on nitrogen really elevates this beer. A winner for flavor and mouthfeel.
  • Bushwa Berliner Weisse by Parkersburg Brewing. Light and lemony with a pleasant tartness. Love at first taste.

Of course, this is just a small sampling of all the WV brews that are available today.  What ‘s great to see is that so many of our newest breweries are brewing superior stuff right out of the gate. Things are headed in the right direction.

So give West Virginia beers a try and let us know what your favorites are. Be sure and tell the breweries too.

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