Looking for above average beer in Grove City/Pittsburgh
March 24, 2008 7:11 AM   Subscribe

Pittsburgh/Grove City beer quest - my wife is going to Grove City for outlet shopping and I want her to pick up some local/unique beer.

Do you know of any places to get above average beer (this place seems like the best bet - Brewmeister Distributors) Can you recommend any "must try" beers - craftbrewed, microbreweries that may be available. Bonus points for rare Belgian beers. Cheers!
posted by phirleh to Food & Drink (14 answers total)
Yuengling? I know my east coast pals rave about it. I think it's foul, but that's my undeveloped palate I'm sure.
posted by gjc at 7:21 AM on March 24, 2008

Well, I can't speak to Grove City. If you make it to Pittsburgh, the places to try are the Sharp Edge and D's Six Packs. Both have excellent bottled beer collections. The Sharp Edge really specializes in the Belgian stuff, but both carry it.

(Whatever you do, don't confuse D's with Dee's on Carson St.)
posted by nebulawindphone at 7:25 AM on March 24, 2008

I can't offer anything that's in Pittsburgh/Grove City, but Yuengling? No. It's a good gettin' drunk beer, but it's not...above average.
posted by sjuhawk31 at 7:26 AM on March 24, 2008

Best answer: RateBeer.com has a search function. I did a quick search for brewpubs and breweries in Pittsburgh, and it looks as if the Church Brew Works, Pennsylvania Brewing Company and East End Brewing Company are your best bets.
posted by cog_nate at 7:34 AM on March 24, 2008

As for particular local beers... I like the Penn Brewery beers (visit the brewery if you get to Pgh) and East End Brewing is a new microbrewery that has come out with some great stuff. I imagine you can get the Penn beers in Grove City. Not sure about the East End.
posted by booth at 7:37 AM on March 24, 2008

If she's actually going to make it into the city (which is damn far from Grove City, by the way), I'd second the Church Brew Works. You can get growlers of anything that's currently being brewed. The Pipe Organ Pale Ale is excellent.
posted by god hates math at 7:57 AM on March 24, 2008

Stop in Slippery Rock at North Country Brewing Co. -- stay for lunch too -- it's a cool spot.
posted by nnk at 7:59 AM on March 24, 2008

Um, Yuengling is not from the Grove City/Pittsburgh area. It's from Pottsville, which is much further east in Pennsylvania. When I went to college near Grove City 10 years ago, Yuengling wasn't even easy to get there. It's also not a microbrew.

There is a chain called Elephant & Castle next to the outlets, and they sell a large variety of microbrews, etc. I'm not sure of their takeout selection (do you know PA's crazy antiquated liquor laws? - Your wife can't bring out more than two 6 packs from the restaurant. In a beer distributor, she can only buy by the case), but she could simply ask the bartender what's good and local.

If it's just Pennsylvania beers you crave, ask your wife to look for Appalachian Brewing Company or Troegs Brewing Company, both out of Harrisburg. You could likely find a variety pack.
posted by bozichsl at 9:52 AM on March 24, 2008

For those of us who grew up drinking Yuengling, and now live outside of Yuengling territory, I'd say it qualifies as a 'must try'. Not arguing that it's good, but it's certainly a distinctive regional brew that we have not been able to replace with other beers available here in New England.
posted by dseaton at 9:55 AM on March 24, 2008

East End makes some good beers. The Big Hop IPA is great. Also you can get Dogfish Head in Pittsburgh, which is brewed in Delaware, but they make some excellent IPAs which you should try if you haven't.

And Yuengling lager is not really remarkable, but maybe it's good if you've never had it before. The porter is alright too.
posted by ludwig_van at 10:22 AM on March 24, 2008

Best answer: I would like to second the Church Brew Works. Although, it would be better if you could actually visit the place.

I'm not sure if you get Great Lakes beer in Ontario, but as a Clevelander, I have to say something!

Despite our differences with Pittsburgh, the two cities have a lot in common, besides Cleveland is less than 2 hours away, that's practically local, right?

As for Belgian styles, I have to recommend the Great Lakes Holy Moses White Ale... it's a nice Spring/Summertime brew. If you haven't already tried it of course...
posted by FBXRD at 10:55 AM on March 24, 2008

Best answer: I asked my husband for suggestions, and here's what he came up with:

* Anything from Victory, if she can find it for you, because they're fond of making interesting and unusual beers. Hop Devil is probably their most famous product.

* Erie Brewing Company is probably the closest/wide distributor of "microbrews" to the GC area - their Railbender is a very strong ale, and their Mad Anthony is like an English pub ale.

* Penn Brewery is a Pittsburgh brewer, and their Penn Dark is a nice dark lager.

Can't recommend the particular distributor for you - we were poor college kids when we lived there, and weren't really in the market for specialty microbrews. In 2007 Grove City finally lifted their "dry town" ordinance, which should make things a little easier for her at least - despite the fact that we still live in a state with crappy blue laws.
posted by librarianamy at 3:32 PM on March 24, 2008

Erie Brewing Company is probably the closest/wide distributor of "microbrews" to the GC area - their Railbender is a very strong ale

Ooh, yeah, Railbender is excellent and very strong indeed.
posted by ludwig_van at 7:52 PM on March 24, 2008

If she can find Erie's Heritage Alt, that's damned good, too; their Ram It maibock and Fallenbock are also very good. However, these are all fall/winter seasonals and may be hard to find anymore. (Though I did find a good stock of cases of Heritage at a distributor just north of Pittsburgh a month or so ago....)

Great Lakes beers are also excellent.

Yuengling is a lager from eastern PA. It's difficult to find outside PA, but ubiquitous and cheap in the Pittsburgh area. However, other than the difficulty finding it outside the region, there's nothing special about it; like Iron City, it's just another cheap yellow lager....

Grove City is over an hour from Pittsburgh, btw. Erie's closer to an hour and a half, but it's at least on the way back to Ontario, so you may prefer to look more in that direction...
posted by FlyingMonkey at 5:30 PM on April 5, 2008

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