Sunday, March 26, 2023

Cape Fear Beer Tracker: This week in craft beer April 29 – May 5

Our craft beer tracker is a place to keep up with scheduled beer releases, festivals, special casks, and more for the week ahead.

Beer Picture of the Week: New cans at Bill's Brewing include Sick Flips and Tactical Tie Dye IPAs. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Bill's Brewing Co.)
Beer Picture of the Week: New cans at Bill’s Brewing include Sick Flips and Tactical Tie Dye IPAs. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Bill’s Brewing Co.)

WILMINGTON — The Wilmington area continues to grow its reputation as an “Asheville East” of craft breweries — there are now 18 in the region — and we’ll be here to keep you in the loop. Our craft beer tracker is a place to keep up with scheduled beer releases, festivals, special casks, and more for the week ahead. We’ll publish every week and update as information comes along.

Schedules can fluctuate inside the brewhouse, so check the breweries’ links for updates on their Facebook pages. Brewers and taproom managers: keep us informed at

This week in craft beer Monday, April 29 – Sunday, May 5

Bill’s Brewing Co. | 4238 Market Street in midtown Wilmington

Beer Release (Thursday, May 2): Belgian Dark Strong with plum. 

  • Brewing Philosophy: “We strive to create beer that everyone can enjoy, from the craft beer connoisseur to individuals new to the craft beer scene.”
  • Brewers’ Top 3: Dog Haze of Summer NEIPA, Schwarzbier, and Wave Break IPA
  • Founded: June 2016

Broomtail Craft Brewery | 6404 Amsterdam Way, King’s Grant area of Wilmington

Beer Release: the Artest, a “crushable Pale Ale … dry hopped with Mosaic and Galaxy delivering awesome hop aroma and flavor to complement the sessionable 5.5 ABV,” owner Barry Owings said.

  • Brewing Philosophy: “To enrich the world by using scientific art coupled with the natural resources and living organisms provided by Mother Nature developing unique, high-quality beer for all to enjoy.”
  • Brewers’ Top 3: Galloping Gose’ – series of light sours using natural lactobacillus and brewers yeast in fermentation to develop smooth, refreshing, true to style Gose’; Acerbic Ecstasy – flagship IPA, a hybrid English / West Coast IPA; Moe Beer – signature brown ale, highly crushable and pairs well with almost any dish.
  • Founded: 2014

And keep up with their souring/barrel aging facility and taproom in Ogden, The Sour Barn (7211 Market Street).

Broomtail's new Artest Pale Ale. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Broomtail Craft Brewery)
Broomtail’s new Artest Pale Ale. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Broomtail Craft Brewery)

Check Six Brewing Co. | 5130 Southport-Supply Road in Southport

Check out their most recent beer list here.

  • Brewing Philosophy: “Make the finest ales and lagers possible, using local ingredients whenever possible.”
  • Brewers’ Top 3: Harley Pope Vanilla Porter, Aerial Aggression Double IPA, B-17 Bock
  • Founded: June 2016

Edward Teach Brewery | 604 N 4th Street in downtown Wilmington

Check out their most recent beer list here.

  • About: “Set in a historic firehouse in Wilmington’s Brooklyn Arts District, we craft beers for everyone. Try our German or Black Lagers, Peach Wheat Ale, and IPAs.”
  • Founded: December 2017

Flying Machine Brewing Co. | 3130 Randall Parkway in midtown Wilmington

Flying Machine's new Planetary Winds IPA. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Flying Machine Brewing Co.)
Flying Machine’s new Planetary Winds IPA. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Flying Machine Brewing Co.)

New Release: the Planetary Winds IPA (6.4 percent ABV). “Born from a unique cross-pollination of wild hops from the mountains of New Mexico, one of our new favorite ingredients, ‘Sabro’, is a wildly expressive addition to our newest India Pale Lager Planetary Winds,” co-founder David Sweigart said. “This new hop variety lends the beer its vibrant aroma of crushed pineapple, creamy vanilla bean and tangerine zest. Think piña colada, without the artificial flavors, slushie machines and plastic cherries.”

Also on tap, a new batch of Albatross II (a double IPA). And with the return of the warm weather, they now have 10 taps at their outside bar.

  • Brewing Philosophy: We want to mix new age ideas with old school techniques to bring a new era of innovation to the marketplace.”
  • Brewers’ Top 3: Vimana (a Kölsch), Hollow Bones (a Roggenbier), and Hollow Wolf Lord (a double New England IPA)
  • Founded: June 2016

Flytrap Brewing | Located at 319 Walnut Street in downtown Wilmington

Beer Release: the Blood Orange Gose (4.2 percent ABV) brewed with a heavy dose of blood orange purée and zest.

  • Brewing Style: A neighborhood brewery specializing in small batch American and Belgian style ales that are guaranteed to be at the peak of freshness.”
  • Brewers’ Top 3: Our Saisons, our Rotating House IPA, and our Kettle Sour Ales
  • Founded: October 2014

Front Street Brewery | 9 N. Front Street in downtown Wilmington

Beer Release: the Tomb Rocker, a “heather ale” (Scottish ale with heather tips). “It was blessed by some Orthodox priests here [Sunday] for Pascha,” spokesperson Ellie Craig said, referring to the annual feast celebrated by Orthodox Christians.

According to Craig, the brewer perfected the beer in his seminary dorm room while studying to be a priest.

“This unique ale is brewed with monk-like devotion, using honey and heather flowers from the Scottish highlands, to create an incomparably smooth and vinous libation with the depth and complexity of fine Port wine,” Craig said.

  • Brewing Style: “Specializing in American and Belgian style ales and small batch brews.”
  • Brewers’ Top 3: Amberjack ESB, Napoleon Rye-namite, Tiny Tim’s Christmas Ale
  • Founded: 1995

Good Hops Brewing | 811 Harper Ave in Carolina Beach

New Release: the 2017 Barrel Aged Barley Wine, expected to last until Memorial Day before they “pull in again for another year,” co-owner Richard Jones said.

  • Mission: “To make and drink damn tasty beer, offer a comfortable neighborhood gathering place and support all things local.”
  • Flagships: Donna Golden Ale, Flip Hop IPA, Stanky Yankee Hazy IPA
  • Founded: 2014

Ironclad Brewery | 115 N. 2nd Street in downtown Wilmington

New Release: the Guapa Guava Light Lager (5.3 percent ABV). “In the name of turning over new fruits to brew with, this light bodied lager lends a grainy finish to the guava spring,” VP Elizabeth Dowless said.

  • Brewing Philosophy: We strive to provide each beer enthusiast with a unique experience by infusing traditional styles with unexpected ingredients: Fermentation of the Imagination!”
  • Brewers’ Top 3: Smoked Honey Lager, Cukes of Hazard, and Navigator Double Bock
  • Founded: 2015

Mad Mole Brewing | 6309 Boathouse Road near Bradley Creek in Wilmington

New Beer Release: the Molesieur, a French Saison brewed at 6.5 percent ABV.

  • About: “Wilmington’s first solar-powered brewery. Spun off from a local software company, Mad Mole combines technology and art to brew better beer.”
  • Founded: June 2018

Makai Brewing Co. | 5850 Ocean Highway W. Unit 1 in Ocean Isle Beach

Newest Releases: the Kamanawanaleiya: Peach (a New England Pale Ale). Check out their new summer hours on their Facebook page, link above.

  • Brewing Philosophy: “Extending the reach of North Carolina craft beer ‘toward the sea’ with consistent flagships and diverse small-batches inspired by the Hawaiian Islands, the Carolina Coast, and our local community.”
  • Brewers’ Choice: Carolina Tropical IPA, Nightingale Coffee Porter, Fire Knife DIPA
  • Founded: 2017

New Anthem Beer Project | 116 Dock Street in downtown Wilmington

New Anthem's new can-release of the Steez IPA. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy New Anthem Beer Project)
New Anthem’s new can-release of the Steez IPA. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy New Anthem Beer Project)

Can Release: Steez, a double dry hopped IPA; and the Neon God, double dry hopped with citra and mosaic. 

  • Brewing Style: Diverse and recognizable hoppy beers with a sidecar of barrel-aged dark beers and traditional styles from the UK and Belgium.”
  • Brewers’ Choice: Rusty Cage, Five Thieves, Hillbilly Prophet
  • Founded: 2016

Red Hare 34 North Experiment Station 4802 Main St in Shallotte

Featured Beer: a Blackberry Gose brewed at 6 percent ABV and only 14 IBU. “This Gose turned out amazing and it has been a big hit with our customers. It has the perfect amount of acid and tart flavors. It hits you in all the right places in the back of your teeth,” taproom manager Byron McSweeney said.

  • Brewing Style: “Our style is fun, approachable beers. Specialize in lagers and crushable IPA’s to experiment wilds and sours, all usually with a classical and historically accurate base but with our innovative spin.”
  • Brewers’ Top 3: Soft J IPA, SPF 50/50 Tangerine, and Putin’s Paradise Russian Imperial Stout
  • Founded: 2012 (Shallotte location opened April 2018)

Salty Turtle Beer Co. | 103 Triton Lane in Surf City

New Releases: Summer Sands American Light Lager and Manila Mango NEIPA.

  • About: Veteran-owned brewery located in Surf City, consisting of 10 rotating taps and a family friendly taproom featuring food trucks and live music. “
  • Brewers’ Choice: Coastline Kölsch, Hey Zay NEIPA, Swingbridge Breakfast Stout 
  • Founded: Dec. 2017

Waterline Brewing Co. | 721 Surry Street in Downtown Wilmington

Latest Beer: their spring seasonal Cream Ale, a “light and refreshing lager, cold conditioned for a smooth, mild flavor with the slightest hints of fruit forward hops.”

  • Brewing Philosophy: “Brewed Under the Bridge with a focus on traditional, easy drinking beer styles with the occasional twist.”
  • Brewers’ Choice: Our top-selling Kolsch, awarding-winning Coffee and Cream Pale Ale, and the annual release of our Whiskey Barrel Aged Tennessee Tripel.
  • Founded: 2014

Waterman’s Brewing | 1610 Pavilion Place near the Wrightsville bridge

Keep up with their latest beer list here.

  • Brewing Philosophy: “Love your liquid!”
  • Brewers’ Choice: Abundant Sunshine IPA, Knothead ESB, Makin’ Me Hazy IPA
  • Opened: July 2017

Wilmington Brewing Co. | 824 Kerr Avenue in midtown Wilmington

Wilmington Brewing's Spring Breakin' Hazy IPA. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Wilmington Brewing Co.)
Wilmington Brewing’s Spring Breakin’ Hazy IPA. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Wilmington Brewing Co.)

The current can lineup includes the Spring Breakin’ Hazy IPA (pictured at right), Surf Rock West Coast Style Triple IPA, Dinosaur Parade Session IPA, Sunset Cruise Hazy IPA, and Lemur Party Milkshake Double IPA.

  • About: “Homegrown from a small home-brew shop to an 11,800 square-foot facility. WBC includes a 3bbl and 25bbl brewery, tasting room, and a home-brew supply store.”
  • Brewers’ Choice: Tropical Lightning IPA, Blair’s Breakfast Stout, Jalapeño Saison
  • Opened brewery/taproom: 2014

Wrightsville Beach Brewery | 6201 Oleander Drive near Bradley Creek

Collaboration Brew: Swamp Thang, a double IPA brewed with Sweden’s Brewing Költur using hops from Riverbend Malt House out of Asheville (7.5 percent ABV).

Recent Beer Release: the Imperial Porter, aged for nearly 4 months in Woodford Reserve double oak barrels (8.5 percent ABV). And don’t forget their Tap It Tuesday specialty casks — last week’s was the Hibsicus-Lavender Wit.

  • Brewing Style: “Wide variety perfect for sipping on the beach, including a year-round selection of lagers.”
  • Brewers’ Choice: Carolina Harvest Ale, Raspberry Berlinerweisse, bourbon barrel-aged Masonbarrel Barleywine
  • Founded: 2016

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