NOLA Brewing’s stewardship of the craft scene, focus on high-quality beer, and investment in the community has led to explosive growth in a city that had all but abandoned its historical designation as the Brewery Capital of the South.
In The Big Easy, drinking is often paired with the debauchery of Bourbon Street, where cheap Hurricanes and “Big Ass Beers” have long been sold and spilled up and down the thoroughfare. But times change even if the party never stops, and New Orleans now has much more to offer the discerning beer drinker.
Gumbo is more than a stew and full of history and Louisiana culture. Its origins are a mixing pot—some of the technique is French, its seasoning and flavors hail from Africa and Spain and its vegetables from the South—combining to create an unmistakable dish that varies from family to family.
Before Avenue Pub was New Orleans’ beer bar du jour, it was just another neighborhood taproom. Twenty-seven years later, it boasts 42 taps and more than 100 bottles of the best craft beer from all over the country.
Craft brewers debate proposed tax breaks; arsenic detected in some beers found to be result of filtering process; Brazilian beer-flavored ice cream causes a stir; action sports athletes open Saint Archer Brewery; and Dixie Brewing fighting federal government for its fair share.
For many breweries, a regional, cultural identity fosters the brand’s wider appeal. Paradoxically, that popularity might dilute the brand by requiring a large-scale production model that precludes ties to its regional roots—something expanding breweries keep in mind.
Anheuser-Busch: brewing your area code?; Sunoco testing growlers to-go in western NY; beloved friend of beer, Ray Deter, passes away; Senate Small Brewers’ Caucus formed; and change in Massachusetts law threatens dozens of small brewers.
Red beans and rice is a staple of the Creole kitchen that can be served as a side dish or a main course. This version uses a Porter pork stock to cook the beans, and it’s served over a slightly bitter IPA rice. To make this an entrée, add Barrel Wood-Smoked Quail on top.
This place is a steaming melting pot of Spanish, French, African and Caribbean influences, a magnet for artists, musicians, misfits and criminals, a charmingly seedy town united by its distaste for authority and its mighty thirst.