After spending time in Nashville, we made our way down to Memphis in order to visit with the owners of Wiseacre, brothers Kellan and Davin Bartosch. They were not open to the public that day, so we spent some time chatting with them about their brewery and their different beers. Following that, Davin walked us around the facility and told us all about his previous experiences with brewing (including stints at the Siebel Institute of Technology in Chicago, IL & Doemen’s Academy in Munich, Germany) as well as the current methods he uses at Wiseacre. The brewery has amazing artwork on the walls and keeps things fun by hosting activities like karaoke, foosball, and an Oktoberfest. Their beer can only be found in Memphis currently, so if you want to pick up some cans, bottles, or growlers, you’ll need to visit the area to do so (and we recommend you do). Ananda IPA and Tiny Bomb American Pilsner are the two staples that can be found year-round, but they offer a ton of other specialty beers throughout the year that you won’t want to miss out on!
We have been visiting breweries for 6 months straight now which puts us at the halfway point! We have been to a total of 274 breweries across 30 states which means that we should be able to easily visit at least 500 total breweries across all 48 contiguous US states by the end of the year…
As we neared the end of our fourth month on the road, we made the trek from Louisville, KY down to Nashville, TN and met with the owners and staff of Jackalope Brewing Company on a hot Tuesday afternoon. We spent some time talking to them about their business, indulged in some of their brews including Thunder Ann American Pale Ale fresh off the canning line, and then they let us have some of the pizza they had ordered! Jackalope was the first all-female owned brewery in Tennessee and Robyn Virball & Bailey Spaulding have done some amazing things with their business, with the help of Steve Wright who was brought on as a third owner. This brewery was also the first one to use cans in Nashville, comes out with new rotators every 6 weeks or so, holds multiple events throughout the year (including an anniversary celebration and a Bruce Springsteen-focused festival), and also shares their building with a coffee shop. Under the slogan ‘Drink Legendary’ they have been able to brew a plethora of unique beer options for you to enjoy, so be sure to drop in and say hi when you’re in town checking out the capital of Tennessee – America at its best.
I can’t think of a better way to start a Louisville, KY experience than to go to a brewery that uses bourbon barrels from Kentucky and is connected to a ballpark . That is exactly what Against the Grain is, but they are so much more than that – our experience there was incredible. Co-owner Sam Cruz met with us on the gloomy, near-tornado-storm-but-nothing-actually-happened Monday and was able to tell us about their constantly changing beer selection, on-site malt smoker, broad distribution, multiple collaborative efforts, and more. Their brewing equipment is located on the second and third floor, which is visible through glass panes for your viewing pleasure from the bottom floor where the taproom and dining area are located. With so many experimental styles and a warm, welcoming staff, this is a destination that you cannot miss out on!
Our stay in Lexington, KY led us over to Country Boy Brewing on a Sunday afternoon. This brewery has a rugged feel both inside and out on their back patio and completes the mood with country music playing in the background. There are 24 tap handles at the bar: 11 of which were in-house Country Boy brews that ran the spectrum from a blonde to a gose to a barrel-aged stout during our visit, while the other 13 were guest tap handles from various breweries in the area as well as across the country. These guys have made themselves stand out by barrel aging beers right from the start, doing collaborations with multiple other breweries, and even growing their own peppers to add to their beers. The bartender, Zac, will help direct you in the right direction for your tastes and mood, so don’t miss out on a trip to their taproom!
Our visit to Jackie O’s was top notch and ended up being the longest one we’ve had yet, as we spent just over 12 hours talking to their owner, brewers, and other staff between our visits to the new production brewery and the original brewpub location downtown. This growing Ohio brewery has many unique things going on, like having their own farm offsite to grow ingredients on, multiple bottle releases every year, expanding barrel age and sour programs, and more; all of which you can get more information about by reading below. Their brews are packaged in kegs, cans, and multiple sizes of bottles for you to purchase and share with your friends, growler fills are offered at the production facility tap room, and the brewpub has excellent food to pair with whatever you end up drinking. As of now, you can only find Jackie O’s beer in Ohio and in a few counties in Kentucky, so be sure to pick some up if you’re ever in the area!
Unique/ different brews responsibly tasted: 1,956(+514 from last month) Breweries visited: 209 total: 153 official & 56 bonus(+50) States visited: 26 & DC (+7)
Starting mileage: 75,416 Ending mileage: 89,098 Total miles driven: 13,682(+4,059) Highest price paid for gas: $3.69 (CT & PA) Lowest price paid for gas: $3.23 (AR)
Nights stayed in a hotel: 9 (+1) Nights slept in Van: 14 (+2) Nights camped: 9 (+1)
* All other nights stayed on someone’s couch/ bed/ floor
National/ State parks visited: 12 (+2) Rounds of disc golf played: 1 (+0) Number of times we have gone back home to Dallas, TX: 1 (+1) Times either of us have shaved or got a haircut: 2 haircuts each (+1); no shave CD’s acquired: 5 (+1) Times asked if brothers/ twins: 46 (+7) Items left behind: 6 (2 shampoo + 2 soap left in bathrooms, 1 towel, 1 pair of socks flew out the window) (+0) Money stolen by broken parking meters: 7 quarters, 1 nickel ($1.80) (+0) Times there was a snow/ ice storm: 5 (Atlanta, GA; Greensboro, NC; DC; Milton, DE; Granby, CT) (+0) Times pulled over then let go: 1 (+0) Unfortunate mishaps with Homer the minivan: 3 (Mirror clipped in Lancaster, PA; driver-side spray painted in Pittsburgh, PA; Nail in tire in Dallas, TX) (+1)