(Formerly Tampa Bay Brewing Co.)
I am not too far from Coral Springs, and I have no perfectly good reason for this, but I had never gone to what is currently, soon to be formerly, the Tampa Bay Brewing Co. It’s on the corner of Ramblewood and University, close to the mall.
So here’s why I hadn’t gone before: I was under the impression they didn’t brew. Yes, their beer came from Tampa, and yes, I love almost everything from Tampa, but I just never went. So imagine my surprise when I walked in and found this:
They brew! And very well, I might add.
They treat first timers very well. All I had to do was sign up for their text messaging list (a no brainer; I was gping to sign up for it anyway), and you get a free 4 glass sampler. Believe you me, it was worth it. Here’s what I tried:
Espresso Stout – A really good, strong beer. The espresso is there, but not overpowering at all. It’s not as creamy as Big Bear’s Espresso Stout was, which is great for the right times.
Wildebeest Hefeweizen – Surprisingly hoppy for a wheat. Well balanced, but I know some that like the relative fruitiness of a hefeweizen that might be turned off by this one.
Flat Tired – Yes, Flat Tired. No, it has nothing to do with that other, bicycle themed beer. Yes, it is quite tasty.
Breakfast Porter – Now we’re really talking. A fantastic, malty, but not overpowering porter that is so easily drinkable, it’s hard to put down.
But, without a doubt, my two favorites are the ones that have local connections:
Kennedy Scotch Ale – Named after my bartender’s daughter (her picture is even on the tap pull). Slightly sweet, but with a maturity that brings to mind all of the positives of an Innis & Gunn. Great beer.
Tamarac Pride English Pub Ale – When I asked for this, I was told it would be similar to English Browns like Newcastle. I feel that is true to a point, but also does Tamarac Pride a disservice. It is beautifully flavorful, with just the right hoppiness. I got a growler of this to take home.
According to the owner, more beers are coming along, including a trappist ale I am quite excited for. It’s nice to find places like this in your backyard, you know?