Alabama

Hops in Heaven: Blue Pants Brewery in Madison, Ala.

There are a lot of things you can do with an old cotton warehouse.  Building a brewery was an ideal fit because of the need for floor space to house all the brewing equipment.  It is a far cry from where Blue Pants Brewery started off Slaughter Road in a 400-square-foot space.  Now when visitors to the brewery and taproom arrive, they immediately see an expansive building with ample parking.

Main entrance to the brewery.

Visitors immediately enter the taproom.

An overview of the seating area.

The taproom maximizes the available space with a nice merchandise area.

A view of the merchandise for sale.

Uniquely among the merchandise is a cooler, so visitors can take home their new favorite beer and also some liquor that is distilled on site.

A view of on-site produced spirits for sale.

However, I came to drink beer not spirits.  So back to the bar…

I had visit the brewery on a previous occasion, so my wife Katie and I opted to split a flight of beers.

A flight of beers.

We ordered Caramel Apple Pinstripe (a milk stout with caramel and apples), Schwarzbier (a dark lager), Candy Bar Pinstripe Stout on nitro (a milk stout with candy bar flavors), and Hopfenweiss (a hoppy weisse).  Craft beer drinkers in Alabama know Blue Pants’s pinstripe stout and its numerous variants, and the candy bar version is one of my favorites.  It was even smoother and more enjoyable having it served on nitrogen instead of with carbon dioxide.  The Caramel Apple Pinstripe was big on caramel flavors with just a hint of apple.  It was reminiscent of a fall festival.  The Schwarzbier was smooth and not overly smoky.  The Hopfenweiss was a hoppy wheat beer with a bit of bitterness on the finish.  We In addition to the flight we ordered the Helles, which is a great classic German-style lager that is just a bit sweet and very light.

In addition to the indoor space, the taproom has a very extensive outdoor space.

An overview of the outdoor space.

The outdoor space includes a handful of fire pits, picnic tables, and outdoor sofas.  So regardless of the weather, visitors to the Blue Pants taproom will find plenty of space to enjoy their beers.

Speaking of beers, Blue Pants also has a crowler machine on site.  Although all Alabama breweries are able to fill a glass growler for customers, a few go the extra step and have a crowler machine on site that allows you to purchase a 32-ounce can of your favorite beer and not have to worry about bringing your own growler or buying one in case you forget to bring your own.  Katie and I decided we would take home a crowler of Caramel Apple Pinstripe because we haven’t seen available in packaging around our town.

A view of a finished crowler.

The label for the crowler was really cool.  Every brewery has their own way of labeling a crowler, but I loved the humor of the name tag that Blue Pants used.  Not surprisingly, the beer was just as great a few days later at home as it was at the brewery.  Hooray for crowlers!

And hooray for Blue Pants Brewery and its diverse offering of beers.  There’s virtually something for everyone who visits the taproom.  If you like darker beers, you need to try whatever pinstripe stout variety is on draft, but if you prefer lighter beers you can find an equally tasty India pale ale, too.

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