Many bars and clubs present bluegrass music, a couple, such as the Station Inn, all the time. Conversely, many bars, such as Natasha’s in Lexington, KY, exist in the Bluegrass. Now we have a craft brewery that not only includes bluegrass music in its soundtrack and decor, but in its brews.
Carrboro, NC’s first modern local craft brewery, Steel String Brewery, will have a soft opening at Noon today (April 27) and Sunday (April 28). The vision of a trio of dedicated young men, Steel String’s opening is a testament to their perseverance. They seemed poised to open fully a year ago when I first returned to Carrboro, but financing proved more problematic than they had imagined.
Now the Steel String rings in the former location of old Carrboro staple The Trading Post between Glass Halfull and Wendy’s. The brew pub opens full time on May 10. The names of featured beers show their musical interests:
Big Mon IPA is named in honor of Bill Monroe, the Father of Bluegrass, and packs an appropriately hefty 6.7% alcohol content.
The Dark IPA, Manzanita (7.4%), is similarly obvious in recognizing extraordinary guitarist Tony Rice, who lives about a half hour west. They write: “Just as Tony Rice pushed the boundaries of a what a guitar could do for bluegrass music in his landmark album Manzanita, our Black IPA pushes the boundary of the IPA, augmenting the hop-heavy style with notes of chocolate, roast, and fresh-brewed coffee. ”
Both those IPAs should be ready for sale by mid-May. We sampled both Exile on Weaver Street, a seasonal, and Maggie’s Farmhouse Ale (5.6%), which shouts out to Dylan, today. Each offered complex, challenging, ultimately refreshing tastes. The Steel String brews can be taken home in 32-ounce grouters in addition on premises consumption.
Rubber Room Session Ale (4.7%) pays homage to popular local studio owned by Jerry Brown of the Shady Grove Band and, by transference, Porter Wagoner.