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Brewin' at the Zoo

I'll tell you what - I was a little bit worried that I had built up Brew at the Zoo too much in my head. After all, it had been six years since I had last been to Brew and a lot could have changed.

I worried for nothing.

Brew at the Zoo was exactly as awesome as I thought it was going to be!

Patrick & I had it carefully planned out. We started the night out right after work with some snacks/dinner at the house. Who wants to drink on an empty stomach? They did have food for sale there but we wanted to spend our time tasting the beers rather than tasting the food.

We also opted for taking an Uber there rather than driving so that we wouldn't have to strand a car somewhere overnight. Plus the zoo had a deal with a local taxi company to pay the first $15 of your fare if your final destination was a residence. Win-win! We called the Uber fairly early and arrived at the zoo about 15 minutes before the gates opened. If you ever go, definitely get there early! There had to have been several hundred people milling around outside waiting for the gates to open promptly at 7pm.

Once we got in the gates, we grabbed our sampler glasses, and bypassed the first section {Palmetto Plaza} of beers. We headed straight for the back of the zoo to the Carousel Plaza. Everyone else stopped at the first section so when we got to the back, it was much less crowded. Here, Patrick & Andrew found their favorite beers of the night {Benford Brewing Problem Solver IPA and Seminar Craver Peanut Butter Porter} and it's where I found my favorite Charlotte beer {Olde Mecklenburg Brewery Hornet's Nest Hefeweizen}.

Our next stop was back up to Palmetto Plaza at the front entrance.

Surprisingly, I've never had the RJ Rocker Son of a Peach beer before. With my new found addition to peach flavored things {hello, peach bellini, I'm looking at you!} I had to try it. It became my favorite beer of the night.

Has anyone else jumped on the Not Your Father's Root Beer band wagon? I have no idea where this beer came from but it popped up out of nowhere earlier this summer in SC and everyone I know is obsessed with it. Did you know it was made by Pabst? We had no idea until we saw it at their tent & Patrick made a beeline for it.

Once we realized it was already after 8, we booked it to the last area of the night, Safari Camp.

Y'all, by the time that we got here, most everyone at the zoo was a little bit tipsy. Just a tiny bit. But this area has a lot of great beers left to try. There were some local beers from both Conquest and Swamp Cabbage {but no River Rat? Still can't figure that one out} and my all time favorite beer... Goose Island 312!

We heard a rumor that they were going to stop serving beer at 9 {even though the event wasn't over until 9:30} so we walked back to the Carousel Plaza to get some more of our favorite beers before they stopped serving. There was one vendor, however, who must not have heard the stop serving at 9pm rumor because they kept pouring beers for us until almost 9:30. Luckily, it was one of the ones I liked a lot so I had no complaints about the extra serving time.

Finally, we made our way back to the entrance of the zoo to catch a cab back to the house. We quickly changed our mind and called an Uber instead. Y'all, the line for the cab was ridiculous! It must have been 100-200 people deep. We probably won't plan on doing that cab thing again next year even though it was a good deal. I'd rather pay a few extra dollars for an Uber and not have to stand in line.

All in all, we had a great time at Brew at the Zoo and will absolutely be doing this again. Now I'm just looking forward to Zoofari in September & cooler weekends so I can go wander around the zoo without it being miserably hot!

Here's what I ended up trying...

Palmetto Plaza
Blue Moon Belgian White
RJ Rockers Son of a Peach
Sweet Water Water Keeper
Thomas Creek River Falls Red

Carousel Plaza
Holy City Washout Wheat
Olde Mecklenburg Brewery Hornet's Nest Hefeweizen
Tradesman Bricklayer's Red Ale

Safari Camp
Conquest Artemis Blonde
Goose Island 312
Magic Hat #9
Palmetto Huger Street
Shock Top Apple
Swamp Cabbage Sabal Palm

& if you're interested, here's the complete list {with circles around the beers that Andrew liked}


  1. Looks like a really great event and smart move taking an uber there and back to really enjoy yourselves!! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

  2. Ah I love beer tasting events like this!! Looks like you guys had a fun time! Have you ever been to the Epcot Food & Wine Festival? Its pretty similar but they have a bunch of different drinks from around the world and they add extra booths in between the countries that are already there. Might be worth a trip if you like that kind of thing! :)

  3. This sounds like such a fun event! I love getting to try new beers! We sell Not Your Father's Rootbeer in our stores and I love it! It's so delicious! Apparently it was brewed by a small time brewery in IL and got picked up by Pabst and now has taken off!

    <3, Pamela
    Sequins & Sea Breezes

  4. You are getting great use out of your Zoo membership friend!!!! I can't wait to drink an ice cold beer again!

  5. What a blast!! Your Zoo has so many fun activities!! Love it!

  6. THIS LOOKS AMAZING! I love that there were so many different kinds available!

  7. Such a fun event! I am definitely going to check around the area to see if there is something like this close to me!

  8. this looks like so much fun. the husband would totally enjoy this and im always up for a fun night out. i'll have to find one around Charlotte soon.


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