Virginia’s Microbrewing Industry Provides Tasty Libations for Local Restaurants
Beer was a very common beverage in 18th-century Virginia. George Washington loved his porter—but only if it was brewed in America—and Thomas Jefferson considered beer one of the necessary “table drinks.” But it wasn’t just a drink for the elite; it was the everyday beverage for most people.
It also wasn’t unusual for most folks to brew their own; there were limited commercial brewers in Virginia at the time, and many households created their own beer with ingredients we’d recognize today: grain, water, hops and yeast.
But malted barley wasn’t easy to come by in Colonial Virginia, so brewers improvised with what they had at hand like pumpkin, molasses and sometimes even spruce and pine. Small batch brewing like that of our forefathers is still hot. Craft brewing is a real trend—the number of small, independent craft brewers has skyrocketed. It is the highest number in 100 years, when Prohibition and consolidation of breweries after Prohibition’s repeal drove it down.
Today there are more than 60 breweries in Virginia that are turning out America’s drink and riding the wave of excitement for reclaiming fine-quality, small-batch beers. Check the beer menu at a local restaurant to see what Virginia beers are offered, and taste a delicious sample of history.
–Patrick Evans-Hylton contributed to this article
Best Places to Imbibe
When you visit the fine restaurants of Virginia Beach, be sure to ask for their local beer selections, and drink in some of Virginia’s tastiest brew.
When you have 101 international beers to choose from, how do you ever make a decision? This isn’t a question you have to ask yourself at most places, but at Abbey Road Pub & Restaurant, the options are nearly endless. Whether you choose a selection from Australia, Bavaria, Belgium, Brazil, England, France or Scotland—or a classic selection from the U.S.—you’ll expand your palate to a world of flavor at Abbey Road.
The Freshest Craft Food menu selections anywhere in the area along with the first-of-its-kind Pour Your Own Beer Draft Beer System in Virginia Beach. Whether you enjoy a good brew with your family and friends, an excellent meal coming out of Joe’s Kitchen, or both, we are convinced that you will find the Atlantic Pints experience one to savor.
It doesn’t get much more local than this; they offer six local beers on tap, five local beers by the bottle and several selections from Virginia wineries to go along with their fabulous selection of handmade burgers, signature steaks and fresh seafood.