The craft beer landscape is a lot like the wine landscape. Think of when you walk into Total Wine. You are presented with 100’s of wine brands and varietals. How many times have we bought a bottle of wine, or a beer for that matter, based on the label or maybe the rating, only to bring it home and be disappointed?
Craft beer is quickly becoming the very same overwhelming landscape that wine is. We face hundreds of beer brands and dozens of styles all while new craft brands and choices are being produced every day.
Within any given region, including ours, the craft beer landscape is daunting, albeit exciting. It’s happening so quickly, as a consumer, all you can do is try to keep up. I know quite a few industry folks whose sole purpose is to try and keep up with it all. BUT there is hope! I’m suggesting a simple solution to this ‘good problem’. With the numerous breweries in our region, new specialty beer retailers opening monthly, craft beer bars abounding, something as simple as a map should help us all.
Below is a map to help the local beer drinker find craft beer retailers that sell growlers to-go. Why be specific to growlers? The reason being, when draft beer is offered to go in a growler it is typically fresher, curated, and most places that sell growlers to go, in general, have a vested interest in selling good beer.
We linked a growler map below that will help both the novice beer hunter and seasoned connoisseur find a retailer, brewery or beer bar nearby.
We all know craft beer is a growing industry. In 2014, Virginia grew to nearly 100 breweries. Currently, there are 29 registered or in various stages of start-up within our region. An army of retail settings that truly inform and purvey a craft beer product is welcomed and dare I say ‘needed’. For example, one of our favorites and in many cases a pioneer for the Norfolk craft beer scene – The Birch. One of the newest bottle shops to the area – The bottleBOX, and Crafty’s, my own brainchild, who we’d love to see open soon.
I’m sure there will be always be plenty more to add to this map. For now, these are the best places to try out in our region, each with their own reason for being. We’ll be updating this map from time to time. Craft beer is here to stay, so get out there, experiment and enjoy.
Crafty’s is Norfolk’s next growler filling station and gourmet shop with your favorite local, domestic and international beer – all in one location. Crafty’s strives to offer a friendly, approachable and knowledgeable environment. Crafty’s is currently scouting locations and working towards raising awareness and capital for a physical storefront. Suggest a location!