Today, beer is the most consumed alcoholic beverage in the world. No surprises in that bit of trivia. That being no surprise, this bit of trivia may surprise you: Beer was one of the most common beverages drank in colonial America. George Washington was a beer lover. He concocted his own beer recipe and had a brewhouse on his estate at Mount Vernon. In fact, virtually everybody, of all ages and social classes at Mount Vernon drank beer as a matter of course during this time period. My first experience with beer was when I was 4 years old. It involved running with my Grandfather's beer bottle and a trip to the emergency for stitches in my hand.
I have never been a huge beer drinker. I seldom drank beer at home. That being said, I did crave the idea of consuming a thirst-quenching, cold beer, especially after working up a frothy sweat on a hot day. Sporting events, weddings, parties, dining out and fishing trips were times I was likely to indulge in a couple of brews. I still seldom purchase beer for home consumption since moving to South Carolina from Ohio, but I have come to appreciate the craft brews available in the Charleston market and will make it a point to attend beer tastings at my favorite nighttime hangout, Coastal Coffee Roasters of Summerville. But there is a new beer kid in the town of Summerville by the name of Caleb Taylor and the Homegrown Brewhouse.
Homegrown Brewhouse is passionate about everything local. Their goal is to have every South Carolina brewery represented on their wall of taps. At present, it has 40 taps pouring the finest beer from the South Carolina market with an impressive selection representing Charleston. If you are not sure about a particular selection you would like to try, they offer a 4 ounce sample to tantalize your decision making brew-buds. Once you have decided, you will be ready for the 12 ounce pour.
At the Homegrown Brewhouse, they go a step farther. The beer selection needs to be paired with the right glass to get the full experience of aroma and taste, which has to do with inducing a suitable foam head. Under each tap, the appropriate glassware is listed. It is all a part of the science behind the perfect pour.
On my last visit to Homegrown Brewhouse, I learned more about beer in one hour than all the previous years I have been drinking beer. My bartender gave me a quick lesson on the types of beers and the importance of a frothy head. It releases the beers aromatics and adds to the overall presentation. An ideal head should be 1" to 1-1/2", but the size of the head depends on the type of beer. The intent of my visit that day was to sample a peppermint beer I heard about in an earlier conversation with Caleb, but it was sold out. Somewhat disappointed, I surveyed the menu for an alternative. They were offering Mobius for $2. My server gave me a sample, which I tried, but I was looking for something with a higher ABV. I chose the Bell Ringer with a 8.5 ABV. It did not disappoint.
The decor was very simple-a long black bar, with a wooden bar top and swiveling seats. A few round tables were scattered about. The floors were a one-time-tiled cement black. A product shelf in the far corner displayed beer growlers and t-shirts. On the walls, chalkboards bearing pertinent information like "Famulari's pizza now offered." Hey, it is all about the beer here.
Caleb plans on installing a brewhouse of their own in the near future to brew up their own unique concoctions. They will use products from local farms in their seasonal brews to continue the theme of buying local and drinking local.
I hope you enjoy this little jingle I came up with based on a old, popular beer song(100 Bottles of Beer on the Wall) in honor of the Homegrown Brewhouse.
"40 taps of beer on the wall, 40 taps of beer. If one of those taps you should happen to pick, there will be 39 left to choose off the wall."
Not bad, huh. If you are looking for a place to relax with your beer buds and enjoy one of your favorite beer suds, this is your place. Located at 117 South Main Street, Summerville, SC.