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Fall Seasonal Beer Releases From Nashville Craft Breweries
by TJ Anderson
To every season, there is a seasonal craft beer. But fall, in particular, seems to draw my attention back to Nashville craft breweries and their seasonal creations. Probably has a lot to do with Oktoberfest, when beer takes the foreground for beer lovers from here to Berlin.
Homegrown fall brews haven’t always been so easy to find in Nashville, but since our city’s come into its own as a growing craft-beer hub, there’s lots to sample.
Below, a few Nashville-area craft breweries with fall seasonal brews that are on my must-tap list:
Young Nashville brewery Smith & Lentz will be hosting its second annual Oktoberfest party on September 16 in its East Nashville taproom, and that day, they’ll also tap their 2017 Oktoberfest Festbier. It’s a tiny run for the seasonal, with 40 cases of cans only available at the taproom. A worthwhile note: The S&L guys aren’t just fall-weather friends to German beer — a great Vienna Lager is one of their flagship brews, so as local Oktoberfest releases go, they’re a good bet.
A cool thing the grandaddy of Nashville craft breweries is doing in 2017: Through the month of September, 100 percent of the proceeds from the purchase of their seasonal Fall Lager — which “builds to a mighty, malty peak and disappears with a crisp hop note” — will go to Hurricane Harvey relief.
Firestarter Smoked Pumpkin Porter
East Nashville-bred but now The Nations-locked Fat Bottom Brewing goes full fall on their sweater-season release, evoking patio fire pits and the season’s omnipresent squash. They say Firestarter, a smoked pumpkin porter with real pumpkin, smoked wheat and pecan-smoked malt, is “velvety on the palate, and finishes with notes of nutmeg, cinnamon, and real vanilla,” and that it’s “just like drinking the Autumn season in a glass.”
Nolensville’s Mill Creek Brewing Co. is another local brewery that delivers an Oktoberfest lager in the cool months (theirs is available September through November). Fittingly, they’ll be hosting an Oktoberfest celebration at their tap room on September 30, with limited edition Oktoberfest steins, a beer carrying competition and lots more fun.
The fall-release crown has to go to the consistently creative TailGate Beer (which has locations in West Nashville on Charlotte and on Demonbreun near Music Row). Their whole thing is small-batch, seasonally appropriate brews, so they’re clearly inclined to do it up here. Come their 3rd annual Pumpkinfest celebration on October 1, Tailgate will have more than 25 unique brews to show off. Some of the offerings they’ve already showed off: a Pumpkin Pilsner (“light, crisp pilsner brewed with subtle pumpkin spice flavors”), Pumpkin Spiced Latte Milk Stout (brewed with cold-press coffee from Nashville coffee spot Eighth and Roast) and ALTernative Pumpkin (“a traditional German Altbier brewed with pumpkin”).
Chronicles Festbier Ale
We spend a ton of time in and around Woodbine, between new builds and home renovation projects, so we’re glad that Nashville’s Black Abbey Brewing Company is around there, just over the tracks in Berry Hill. Their fall seasonal is a clean and malty Octoberfest-style brew they call Chronicles, out as a limited release and just for these coming cool months.
Little Harpeth’s taproom, just on the East Nashville side of the Cumberland, will be welcoming fall with their Prost! Oktoberfest brew, “a traditional German Lager that produces a rich malt aroma and finishes dry on the palate.”
Southern Grist isn’t your average craft brewery with a handful of standards and three or four seasonals — the list at their East Nashville taproom is constantly changing, and you’ll almost always find something summer-y, something super hoppy, something sour, something kind of sweet, etc. As of right now, our fall Southern Grist pick would probably be their new Calculated Bet 2, a coffee-touched imperial stout conditioned with date syrup. Might be a little winter-y, but the date syrup feels autumnal.
Spruce Beersteen Black IPA
The creative name prize again goes to Jackalope, whose seasonal Spruce Beersteen Black IPA has a “powerful hop bouquet and dark, roasted caramel malts.” It takes center stage again on Saturday, September 23 in their Nashville taproom, at their Sprucefest 2017 celebration. Naturally, live Springsteen covers will be happening. Party’s 3 to 7 p.m.
Hope that list is giving you a taste of fall. Any good ones I missed? Let me know.
If your hunt for fall beer coincides with a hunt for a new home in the Nashville area, I can help there too. Call or email TJ Anderson Homes here.
TJ Anderson is a Nashville Realtor with Benchmark Realty who's helped countless clients both buy a home and sell a home in Nashville, Tennessee. He blogs about Nashville regularly, from Nashville-area....
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