Monday, July 1, 2013

Barons Gone Wild: Front Street Brewery

A Baron on vacation is like hanging out with the Red Hat Society on an antiquing trip.  Plans are made.  Meticulous research eats up data plans.  Every shack with the slight offer of new beer is explored, analyzed and resutls are disseminated.

So yeah, I got made fun of and my lady may have realized too late what she had gotten into, especially when I got beer snob pissy at Front Street Brewery.

On the drive from Topsail into Wilmington, there were 5-6 billboards exclaiming how much fun I would have at this brewery.  Like the sarcastic asshole I am, of course I made fun of them.  Seriously, who needs that many billboards for a brewery and then markets it like it's Indiana Beach?  The ADHD got the better of me and I then spent the rest of the trip fantasizing what it would be like if Indiana Beach was a beer theme park.  I know, being me is awesome.

A beautiful old building in historic downtown Wilmington, it was in a centrally located spot.  A giant old hardwood bar, and their "brewery" filled the bottom floor and patrons were shuffled off to the second story loft seating with a beautiful Victorian style ceiling which I admired, considering in was about two inches from my face.  With all the heavy wood and claustrophobic embellishments, it definitely had a pub feel.
My journey to this family and Bro friendly brewery started off on the wrong foot.  They committed the #1 sin of a brewery:  not having the beers on their menus.
I ordered what sounded like a weird, funky sour and got pumped. Waitress came back with everyone's beers except mine and told me that they were out.  Annoyed, I ordered another and tempered my mood with the appetizer we had ordered.  A MUG OF BACON.

Once again, she returned with no beer in hand.  Now I'm grumpy.  I don't need to rant on about that but I've been there.  I've been a server, but come on.  If you don't have a beer, then tell the servers so they can tell me AT THE TABLE and not make me wait 10 minutes between each trip.   It's whatever, and things happen, but expect me to be happy about it, especially when my third choice of beer was terrible.

I settled on their Wee Heavy.  I will give this beer a one sentence review, because that is all it deserves.It was flat, bland, the malts were off and it was too sweet, but in a bad way.  They should have taken this beer and dumped it in the Cape Fear river, because at least there it will actually get lost and forgotten.
So now I'm annoyed, grumpy, and pissed that I paid $8 for a beer I had to chug out of spite.  From out of nowhere, Front Street Brewery redeemed itself.  My friend quietly spoke up and said, "Luke, calm down and try this."  What followed will be put in my top three Scottish Ales of all time.  Damn. I just stared at it... And then the moment was broken by a BBQ Beef brisket burp.

This brewery is awkward. They either knock it out of the park, or fail.  Hard.

You can't always judge a brewery by its billboards...
I give Front Street Brewery a quizzical 3. Should be less, but that Scotch Ale was amazing and the food was decent.

The Wee heavy incurs my wrath with a 1.

I almost made sweet love to the Scotch Ale at the table. 5 heads.

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