Author's note: Updated with a big hand from NCBeerGuys
Asheville gets all of the craft beer accolades and all of the credit for drawing bigger brewers such as
to North Carolina, but there's a whole lot to be said for nearby Brevard. If you don't believe us, just ask
founder Dale Katechis, who opened his company's first East Coast brewery there late last year.
"I've been traveling there and mountain biking for over 20 years and it's a place that I go to frequently because it's some of the most pristine mountain biking in the country ... my mom has even moved out to Brevard. She fell in love with it. It's just one of those places."
Incredible mountain biking, long stretches for road biking,
waterfalls all over the joint
live music and festivals
all make strong arguments for a few days in Brevard, but what about the beer?
Well, about that.
The Oskar Blues Brewery Brevard
is open, hosting tours and pouring pints, but until it expands into a brewpub, smokehouse, concert venue or arcade like Oskar Blues facilities in Colorado, there are still plenty of options in the area to keep beer lovers occupied.
Brevard Brewing Company
in downtown Brevard has been open for little more than a year and lets visitors shop Main Street and finish up with a Munich Dunkel, Bohemian Pilsner or Red Ale. Meanwhile, just up the road in Hendersonville,
Southern Appalachian Brewery
, hosts bands in the tap room, beers from local brewers on its taps, and its own citrusy Belgian Blonde and potently bitter (95 IBU) IPA in its kegs.
If that's not enough, there's always Asheville. The city's lengthy brewery and pub crawl includes stops at at
Oyster House Brewing
French Broad Brewing
Green Man Brewery
The Lexington Avenue Brewery
The Thirsty Monk
Altamont Brewing Co.
to keep beer lovers occupied. The city's only adding to that list, with
Burial Beer Co.
set to join the ranks soon.
If you can extend your vacation a few days, the NCBeerGuys recommend taking Route 276 right out of Brevard and enjoying the winding road and incredible views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. While that trek sounds like its own reward, a stop in Waynesville at the end for visits to
Frog Level Brewing
Tipping Point Tavern and Brewery
is some nice incentive.