The Beer Guy, Mark Haynie


I hope you will all welcome a new brewery to the area. After years of trying to find a place to settle, Pinelands Brewing Co. is opening to the public noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 1, — and every Saturday going forward — for a tour and tasting at 140 7th Ave, Little Egg Harbor.

I visited last week for a special soft opening and enjoyed several good beers: Mason’s Wheat (witbier), Evan John Porter (vanilla porter), Great Bay IRA (hoppy red ale) and Cannonball Stout. All are session beers and quite tasty. On the tour, owner/brewer Jason Chapman and crew will explain the brewing method and show his mostly self-built one-barrel system. You can also purchase glasses, apparel and a growler to fill to take home. Be sure to stop in and tell him I sent you. Support your local brewery!

It is so hard to keep up with events in the area anymore so I figured I’d devote most of this article to some of these fun things to do.

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On Thursday, Feb. 27, The Iron Room at Atlantic City Bottle Company has a Tuckahoe Brewing Tap Takeover. Stop by and enjoy some of the great local beers.

On the same day, Harrison Beverage launches a new line of beers at Firewaters at the Tropicana Casino and Resort from 8 to 10 p.m. from Evolution Brewing of Salisbury, Md. They will be serving Lucky 7 Porter, Lot No. 3 IPA, Exile Red Ale and Lot No. 6 Double IPA. I have had some of their beers and they are quite good. Come on in and let’s taste them together.

Tomorrow, The Continental at The Pier at Caesars is hosting a Yards Beer Dinner with four courses and four beers. For $50, you will enjoy hors d’oeuvres with ESA, shrimp and biscuits with Brawler, Louisiana gumbo with Rye IPA, coriander duck with Spruce Ale, and flourless chocolate cake with a special firkin of Coffee Chocolate Love Stout. You will also get to meet and talk to owner/brewer Tom Kehoe, who founded Yards in 1994. The dinner begins at 7 p.m., and reservations are needed. Call 609-674-8300 to get a spot.

Speaking of Yards, The Iron Room will host a Yards Tap Takeover with a nice selection of their best beers on March 7.

For my fellow whiskey aficionados, don’t miss Whiskey Week at Tropicana from March 16 to 22. There are some great events happening that week: Ri-Ra sponsors the Polar Plunge on March 16, and then hosts a party with $5 Irish Whiskey specials. Chickie & Pete’s has a Jameson Tasting on March 18 and then a Laphroaig Scotch Tasting on March 19, a Bourbon Tasting on March 20 and another Jameson Tasting on March 21. All are $20 and from 7 to 9 p.m. Call 609-344-1080 for reservations.

Broadway Burger Bar is doing a Whiskey & Ryes, Oh My! event on 6 p.m. March 21. It will showcase some single barrel and small batch products from Michter’s, the nations oldest distiller. The $30 admission includes five samplings paired with special food and dessert menus as well prizes and giveaways. Call 609-317-4660 for reservations. And don’t forget their Beer Brunch every Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Stop in and enjoy the great variety of craft beers on tap.

A little bit out of the area, Chicago Uno Grill in Deptford is sponsoring a Flying Fish Dinner 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 5. They also are hosting a Weyerbacher Tap Takeover on March 20, but the tap selection here is worth the trip alone backed up by great food and an exceptional bottle collection.

Iron Hill in Maple Shade is holding their annual Barrels, Bourbons and Bugs event noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 1. Six beers will be presented as barrel-aged and then also infused with sourness. Samplers of all 12 are available. One of my favorite events!

Of course, tickets are now on sale for the 9th Annual A.C. Beer and Music Fest on April 4 and 5. Sessions are 7 to 11 p.m. April 4, and noon to 4 p.m. and 6 to 10 p.m. April 5. Tickets are $55 online or at Joe Canal’s, they will be $60 at the door. Make sure you get your tickets soon. The best beers and music to be found anywhere will be presented for your pleasure. We are lucky to have one of the largest festivals in the nation right here in A.C., and it’s one not to be missed.

Keep warm and have a good beer! Salud!

Mark Haynie is a craft-beer expert who lives in Somers Point and travels extensively to find new beers. He is a contributor to the Mid-Atlantic Brewing News and is the co-author of the book New Jersey Breweries with Lew Bryson. His column runs every other week.

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