Beer Scout

Recently Opened: Lookout Brewing
103 S. Ridgeway Ave., Black Mountain

As Oyster House moves up from a nano-sized brewing system, another small-batch system has just come online out in Black Mountain. Housed in a small strip behind Lucky Bamboo Café, Lookout Brewing is easy to miss if you’re not, well, looking out for it. However, it has one big advantage: its proximity to downtown Black Mountain. “Both tourists and the locals here like walking around, so we wanted to be somewhere you could walk or bike to easily,” says owner John Garcia. 

While Garcia has only been brewing for a couple of years, he’s the former beer buyer for Black Mountain Ale House — so he knows what locals want to drink. “That job made me very familiar with the beer around here, and the numbers, and it’s a big reason why we make the beers we do at Lookout. …I learned that the beers that sell locally actually aren’t the extreme ones. They’re the ones that are palatable to a wide range of people. We see our beers like that — beers that are all about balance.” With most beers in the 5 percent ABV range — even the IPA barely breaks 5.5 percent — most are made for easy drinking as well.

The tasting room, which shares space with a homebrew supply shop, has eight beers on tap that change every couple of days. If you don’t make it to the tasting room, Black Mountain Ale House already has Lookout on tap, and a few other Black Mountain businesses will have beer flowing soon, according to Garcia. Louise’s Kitchen, Dark City Deli, Town Pump and Todd’s Sandwich Shop will all have a tap, and Phil’s Bar-B-Que will go one step further with a custom light lager tentatively titled Phil’s Pils.
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Other June Openings: Burial Beer and Hi-Wire Brewing
Xpress recently ran stories on both the breweries below. But with all that’s been going on, it seemed like we should throw in a reminder about the what/when/where.

Burial Beer
40 Collier Ave., Asheville
Grand Opening: June 15, 2-8 p.m.
Opening Days/Hours: Fridays, 4-8 p.m.; Saturdays, 2-8 p.m.
Beers on tap at opening: Reaper Tripel, Scythe Rye Pale Ale, Pitchfork Saison, Hatchet North Carolina Lager and two special releases.
Total house beers eventually on tap: Up to eight.
Pour sizes and prices: 16-ounce pours of most beers, $4; 7-ounce pours of most beers, $2; 7-ounce pours of special/higher gravity beers, $3.
Notes: The back patio may be ready at opening, but if not it will be coming soon. Pretzels and goldfish will be complimentary. There will also be weekly beer specials.

Hi-Wire Brewing
197 Hilliard Ave., Asheville (former site of Craggie Brewing).
Grand Opening: TBA, likely mid- to late-June.
Opening Days/Hours: Sundays-Thursdays, 4 p.m.-midnight; Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m.-2 a.m.
Beers on tap at opening: Hi-Wire Lager, Hi-Pitch IPA, Bed of Nails Brown, Prime Time Pale, Uprisin’ Hefeweizen, Acrobat Spring Ale and a variety of other specialty beers.
Total beers eventually on tap: 10 taps, including 6-8 Hi-Wire beers, as well as at least one nonalcoholic option.
Pour sizes and prices: 16-ounce pours of most beers, $4; 8-ounce pours of most beers, $2.50; Flights of four 4-ounce tasters, $4.
Notes: There will always be one or two beers on tap that are exclusive to the taproom. There will be a pint night at Westville Pub on Wednesday, June 12.

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