Hali’s NC Brew Tour Month 3: Birthday Beers and the Arrival of Spring

I don’t know if anyone else has noticed this, but 2017 is zooming by. I feel like I am running behind a bus, trying to catch it as it leaves the station. Come on now, it was just Christmas yesterday. Is there a pause button we can hit so I can stop to catch my breath?

While I would love it if time worked like that, I was actually excited to flip my calendar to March.

The third month of the year is always my favorite because it is my birth month and we see the first signs of spring as new life begins to blossom in the warming sun.

Catawba Peanut Butter Jelly TimeMarch is also when Catawba Brewing releases Peanut Butter Jelly Time. 

I was lucky enough to come home on the evening of my 27th birthday — after a long day at work and school — and find two cans of PB&J tucked behind a birthday card in my refrigerator.

My husband-to-be knows me too well.

That first can was the perfectly sweet treat I needed to end my birthday. The light brown ale blends together roasted peanuts and raspberry puree to create a unique flavor that truly tastes exactly like a PB&J sandwich in a glass. I say this as I release a heavy sigh of pure joy and delight.

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Hali’s NC Brew Tour Month 2: Gearing up for summer brews and my aversion to hops

For those who aren’t aware, North Carolina had exceptionally beautiful weather in February with weekend temps hitting the low-80s and providing us with a small taste of what to expect in the coming months.

With warm weather comes good, cold beer, and I must admit that I broke the stout streak that I had going from January. It has simply been too warm for those dark, heavy beers I do so enjoy.

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Hali’s NC Brew Tour: Month 1

I (unofficially) kicked off Hali’s NC Brew Tour and began sipping away at my new “beers” resolution the second weekend in January as I spent Sunday Funday brewery hopping with friends.

Now, I call this the unofficial start because this particular outing was unexpected and last minute. I received a text message from one of my girlfriends that morning inviting Justin and I to meet up with her and her husband later that afternoon for drinks at NoDa Brewing. So, we joined them and one thing led to another, and before we knew it, we were sipping suds at Birdsong Brewing before ending the day at Free Range Brewing.

When I first thought up the idea of Hali’s NC Brew Tour and began planning, it didn’t occur to me how much craft beer I would be consuming at a time and how that might alter my memory of the brews I sample. On this first day-drinking stop on my brew tour, I learned that I need to take the time to carefully document my thoughts, capture images of each pour, but also have fun while doing it. Therefore, in this first monthly recap, you will not see many photos and my recollection of beers is based solely on what I plugged in to my Untappd account.

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My New ‘Beers’ Resolution: Drink More NC Brew

Despite — or perhaps because of — the crap storm that has been 2016, this year actually was the year of good beer for this gal.

This was the year that I jumped head first into craft beer and learned to fully appreciate the art of brewing — particularly, in my home state of North Carolina where the craft beer industry has more than a $1.2 billion impact on the state.

I grew up just outside of Asheville — a small town in the mountains of western North Carolina known for being a leading city in the craft beer scene — so good beer made by good folk has always held a special place in my heart.

Therefore, in an attempt to not only show my appreciation for this industry but also to expand my palate, continue the streak of good beer I began in 2016, and share my finds with those who also enjoy a quality pour, I am making only one resolution for the new year: To only drink beer made in North Carolina.

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