If you read my post about Instagram friends then you’ll know that I’ve had a fun time getting to know people off the craft beer community on IG. I started talking to Andy and had mentioned if he was ever in Phoenix that I would show him around! Well… I wasn’t lying, but he lives in a different country so I never expected it to happen. Well Andy messaged me about two months after I said that and was like hey… remember how you offered? Yes. Well my friend and I are coming in January so… I had to get an itinerary together! And not going to lie, this seriously seemed so far fetched and exciting that I couldn’t contain my excitment. How often do you get to say “I went brewery hopping with my English friends”? For me, one time in my life so far, but I have a feeling it will happen again. Maybe I’ll be in England though!
Andy, Richard, Kevin (before he had to go to work) and I ventured around multiple places in Phoenix! I mean… in their defense it was mostly my favorite breweries around town. We started at The Beer Research Institute because I’ve now taken 6 new people there and everytime people have loved it. The IPA’s are good, which hey, if you know me you’ll understand that I’m not a big IPA person. The Battle Star Monkey sounded like a stout, so when I ordered it in the flight I didn’t realize it would be an IPA. But honestly it was a very smooth IPA that didn’t have a lot of that bitter after taste, but was hop forward and ended more fruity sweet.As we arrived at BRI I told the guys how excited I was for them to go in because I still stand by the fact that they have the best flight holders around. I haven’t been all over the world, but I’ve been to a few places… so if you know of a cooler one prove me wrong! If you’re there check out the Black IPA, again highly impressed by the way they balance all of their flavors. BRI was Richard’s favorite place because he is a fan of IPAs, so I feel like that is saying something! When in Phoenix come to BRI and let me know, I’ll come hang out! It’s a little out of the way for most travelers but so worth the trip.
Next stop had to be Goldwater! Side note before I go any further… Kevin hasn’t been to BRI or Goldwater so I’m super happy he was able to come hang out and more than grateful for the ride until he had to go to work (don’t you worry we ended up at King’s of course).
Also… I guess they don’t have big trucks in England so the guys wanted to take a picture of Kevin’s truck due to “truck envy,” otherwise, I would have liked to take a picture in front of a brewery. But back to Goldwater! Andy picked Goldwater as his number 1 brewery and Richard gave it an honorable second mention! I think this was one of my favorite stops for the journey because of the Flannel Buddies for Lyfe beer. Out of irony I made the guys take a picture because they were both wearing flannel shirts, but as I would soon find out (at Sunup Brewing), they really should be the picturesque story for the beer. They’ve been friends since they were 15, have traveled the world together and had their moments of make and break, but somehow they always seem to get through no matter the difficult circumstances. When Richard was telling me this, my heart was melting. How awesome is that type of loyalty and friendship? Do you have someone in your life like that?
Flannel Buddies for Lyfe
Goldwater though has an awesome vibe with really good beer. They have some “hype” beers that I don’t understand the price of, but man the stouts are so good, brown ale is amazing (even my friend from Texas who doesn’t like brown ales was a fan of the Machine Gun Teddy) and their IPAs are also a Scottsdale staple. Everyone that works there is super chill and will chat (as long as they aren’t busy) with you for awhile. They do not have food, but free popcorn and a bunch of restaurants around them since they are in Old Town Scottsdale.
The great thing about Phoenix breweries, most of them are dog friendly. I lost the guys to the dogs a few times, which is always funny to me. This is a beautiful looking dog so I guess I can’t blame them. Also, I have a knack for taking candid pictures that people end up hating me for so here is one of them:
Working our way back toward Central Phoenix meant that we went to Wren House next. Wren used to be my Monday spot so it holds a special place on my list. The little house just has that homey feel. Sadly, I didn’t pay attention to the fact that they had a can release so it was a lot more busy then we would have liked. The guys enjoyed the vibe of the place anyways so I’m really glad. They’ve been doing a ton of IPAs lately, but Jomax will forever be one of the best coffee stouts. And maybe one day we’ll get lucky and they will bring back Lady Banks! Since they were busy and Kevin only had time to drop us off at the next location we ventured on to Helton!
Helton came in at a great time for some food, taco time! The Boysenberry sour was the beer I wanted Andy to try almost all day because he is a sour head. Luckily, the beer held up and he loved the tacos. Melissa and her sister came and joined in on the adventure! There is something about Helton’s brewery that just is so low key, but welcoming that makes you want to hang out all day and just chat with people. By far Helton is becoming a high frequented brewery for myself. This was Andy’s second favorite brewery.
After Helton, we went to SunUp Brewery. Another new frequented place for me! The White Russian Imperial Stout cannot be compared to anything else in the valley. They have an awesome staff, from the people I’ve met, and they help smaller brew projects by letting them use their facility to brew beer there. I’m a big fan of small businesses supporting other small businesses! The Pucker Puncher from Four Silos (brewed at SunUp) is so yummy. Go check them out and take a cool picture with their street art on their brewhouse.
Since my staple beer is Koffee Kolsch, Huss Brewing was next especially since it’s within walking distance. I completely forgot and tried to order an Uber, which I was made fun of for. We walked over and sadly they were closed for their employee holiday party. We ventured on to Arizona Wilderness Brewing Company. The downtown location is such a chill place. Sadly, by this point all of us were tired and had a decent amount of beer. Melissa suggested the duck and Andy loved it. Both of the guys would have liked to go there sooner to enjoy the brewery more.
After AZ Wilderness, Richard went to sleep and Andy and I ventured to King’s Beer and Wine! Andy agreed that it’s the best place in town because it’s super chill, has a bunch on tap and a large selection in the store next door you can drink there. Jaime came and met up with us. I won’t pretend to remember because I was tapped at this point, so no clue what we drank there.
Both of the guys really enjoyed their trip here and I’m beyond grateful they trusted me to show them around for a day! Richard thought overall that Phoenix is laid back and friendly! So amazing to have people come and experience Phoenix because it’s one of those places that not many people think to come visit. I’ve been blessed with meeting such amazing people because of the craft beer community. This weekend with Andy and Richard was by far the most unique one thus far.