There’s something oddly satisfying about finally visiting a brewery whose beers you’ve sampled and seen around town numerous times. The act of finally going to see where those beers are born is sort of a minor pilgrimage, an act of duty in reverence to the countless pints you’ve downed.
Maybe that’s a bit overdramatic, but it was nice to take my wife (thank you to my daughter’s grandparents for watching the kiddo) to finally visit Pompano Beach’s 26 Degree Brewing.
They have a lot of space. And I mean a lot of space. I am sure the facility used to be a Bealls or a Winn-Dixie (or both, actually) in a former life. Seating is copious, there’s a nice piano, separate game room, and big picture windows to the brewing area in the back.
They take a lot of the wall space up with some really nice artwork, including our favorite panels featuring blueprints for brewing systems and vessels. They’re on the wall by the restrooms.
Other than the fact we got some time to ourselves, we made sure to head to 26 Degree since they just released their two new fall seasonals:
26 Octoberfest (Marzen, 6.3% ABV) – Ah yes, it’s Marzen season. I do love this style, and 26 Degree did a great job with the style. It’s caramelly sweet, slightly heady, and incredibly deep. Big, bold malt flavors abound.
Not Another F’n Pumpkin Porter (Porter, 7% ABV) – This is, big shocker, a pumpkin porter. It’s a wonderfully dark, and the deep roasted malts have nice flavors of chocolate and pumpernickel. Faintly, the pumpkin swims around in the ether in the back of the palate. The best part of it all, however, is they rimmed the glass with a sugar and pumpkin spice mix. It was a nice touch I never expected, and it makes for two distinct drinking experiences; with and without the rimming. My wife loves her pumpkin porters, and this was a great one.
Since I almost always do flights, I had a few rotators to round out the session as well:
‘Merica (Pilsner, 5.5% ABV) – America! It’s light, but there is a relatively strong hoppiness to this beer, maybe a bit more than most Pilsners I’ve had. It’s almost to the level of a Pale Ale, and I can see this being a big hit with a lot of Florida hop heads.
Goin’ Commando (Scotch Ale, 10% ABV) – Not America! So this beer’s a big, thick boozy bomb of flavor. As a Scotch Ale, Goin’ Commando has a very deep, syrupy dark fruit and molasses flavor. There’s a great earthiness to the beer, owing to some nicely peat-smoked malts.
Florida Trail Ale (Belgian Blonde, 5.6% ABV) – Here’s another quality beer. It’s got a great, bready feel, with a light undercurrent of bubblegum flavor from the Belgian yeast. It’s very sessionable and I could drink this all day.
We would go back. Easily. And tours are on Saturdays, so I know when we go back that’s probably going to be something to take advantage of.
It’s always nice to see where the beers are brewed, you know?
Drink Florida Craft,