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Beer Guy: Asheville taps into Beer Week

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5/23/2012 - Beer Guy: Asheville taps into Beer Week
by Tony Kiss - Asheville Citizen Times

Beer Week starts on Thursday night, and I'm in a bit of a pickle.

Should I head to Highland Brewing for a benefit for the family of a brewery worker killed in an accident in New Hampshire, go to Thirsty Monk for a tasting, soak up some Bavarian oom-pah beats at Lexington Avenue Brewery or settle in for the Asheville Beer Masters tournament at Asheville Brewing?

And that's all just on Thursday night. Beer Week means some tough choices during a crazy 11-day stretch through June 3. There's no way to do it all. There are too many conflicts, with great events happening at the same time.

The Asheville Beer Masters tournament at Asheville Pizza & Brewing downtown is very tempting. The final four contestants -- Tim Clapper, Daniel Hardin, Scott Hicks and Adam Reinke -- will face a battery of tough questions and some challenges. One of them will walk away with some great prizes, worth more than $1,000.

On Saturday, the Just Brew It homebrew festival outside Wedge Brewing Co. could be the year's biggest beer bargain. A membership in Just Economics of WNC (starting at $15) gets you an afternoon of great homebrewed beer.

The list is constantly growing, and you can keep track at www.ashevillebeerweek.com

Cheers to sessions beers

Green Man Brewing, 23 Buxton Ave., will host a Sessions Beer Festival during Beer Week and will serve 17 different lower-alcohol brews, with three of them on tap at any given day. They include a Berliner Weisse and a Scottish cask ale.

All beers will be 4.5 percent alcohol or lower and will be specially priced.

Growlers are great

The new Growler Station store will open Thursday at 109 Augusta Road in Greenville, S.C., selling two dozen draft beers (many of them regional favorites) in take-home returnable glass or recyclable plastic growler bottles.

A special refill system promises to keep beers fresh for up to three months, Growler Station owner Craig Pavlish said.

Most beers are $8.99-$14.99, through some higher-end brews go up to $20 or $30 a bottle. Because North Carolina law doesn't allow this kind of store, the Growler Station sounds like a great place to visit. Get more online at http://growler-station. com/gs002-greenville.

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