The holidays in Charlotte are magical, for many unique, not-to-miss reasons — one of them being that there is no shortage of amazing craft holiday beers right here in our backyard. Some of our favorite breweries have been working on new holiday favorites to warm your spirits and elicit warmth among friends and within conversation. Others are bringing back the same holiday brews that they’ve served year over year, and still others have year round selections that just so happen to be favored this time of year. So without further ado, check out what Charlotte breweries have to offer this holiday season and step in before the holidays fly by… as they usually do.
Wooden Robot Brewery has a spiced red ale, appropriately called Sweet Tater Pie (8% ABV) that is a returning holiday favorite, as well as Sweater Weather (5.4% ABV,) a malty English-style ESB with caramel and chocolate flavors. Both are perfect for these cool fall afternoons!
Thirsty Nomad Brewing will be releasing a winter seasonal beer — the Codger bourbon barrel aged Old Ale — in December. Mark your calendars! It's a 10% ABV brew with plenty of dark fruit flavors, and a distinct kick of bourbon. And… it’s a limited bottle release. It’s estimated to be ready the third week of December, so heads up!
Sycamore Brewing. Have you gotten your hands on their Gourd Have Mercy this fall? It’s delicious and pumpkin-y and very appropriate for fall. But on to the next… they’re releasing their Naughty Bear (7% ABV) winter ale this Wednesday and includes local honey, two types of vanilla beans, heirloom barley and spices from our local Savory Spice Shop. I. Can’t. Wait. To. Try. This. Beer.
NoDA Brewing Company brings to the table its Santa Baby Christmas Ale, a 4.5% ABV ale brewed with coriander, clove, orange peel, ginger and vanilla. So cozy and warm! And, on Black Friday, they’re releasing their Hoppy Holidays IPA(6.5% ABV,) brewed with Spruce and six different hops. It’s very hoppy, and very satisfying. (I made sure to get my hands on this one last Christmas season.)
Unknown Brewing doesn’t brew a specific holiday beer, but they do have a beer that gets special attention this time of year. Their Grammy’s Breakfast is a bourbon barrel-aged imperial brown ale that’s brewed with vanilla beans and Vermont maple syrup.
Bold Missy Brewing doesn’t release a special holiday beer, but they highly recommend their chocolate stout to warm you up in cold weather. There’s no better time to go try this beer.
Legion Brewing will be offering “Cinn City”, a spiced Belgian beer with cinnamon, clove and ginger on tap for the next month, as well as “Path To The Dark Side”, an oatmeal stout with notes of roasted coffee and dark chocolate. They’ll also have “Winter Is Beer” on tap — a heavy chocolate Imperial Porter. Cinnamon, chocolate, coffee. What’s not to love?
Blue Blaze Brewing really brings it during the holidays. They have B. MacKaye’s Hell Raisin’ Scotch Ale, a dark, malty, 7.7% ABV beer with a large caramel presence; Brain Bucket Bock, a German Bock with notes of raisin; Sherpa Winter Porter, a light-bodied, dark brown porter with vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, tiramisu and hazelnut. YES, please! These three should all be available by the end of November!
Sugar Creek Brewing offers their easy-drinking Mocha Java Porter using 100% organic fair trade coffee. Delicate floral notes, a blend of four malts and local, cold-brewed coffee make this porter super special, especially during cold winter months. With a dark chocolate finish plus coffee, this beer sounds like everything we’ve ever wanted.
Oh, how I love craft beer. I will be enjoying each of these beers over the course of the holidays, and you should, too! Channel your inner festiveness and give these breweries a visit. Tacky Christmas sweater, optional.