Every November for the past three years we’ve hosted a quail hunt for our top customers followed by a field party in the Virginia countryside. It’s an honor to give back to our most devoted customers, and especially in a way that feels true and authentic to our brand. This year we decided to celebrate the abundance of premium wineries, breweries, restaurants found throughout the commonwealth that make it so great. Champion Brewing Co. is based in Charlottesville and produces ales in a 3 barrel Premier Stainless brewing system. Their commitment to the best ingredients and ethos based in punk rock has dubbed them Charlottesville’s most “progressive” brewery. They also hold the trophy for probably being the only Virginia-based brewery that’s hosted band-centric beer collaborations: Last year they partnered with rockers NOFX, Against Me!, and the Hold Steady on a series of exclusive suds. We visited the brewery this week with local photographer Sarah Cramer Shields to meet owner/head brewer Hunter Smith and get a rundown of their current offerings. This should guide you well on your next visit to C’Ville and proves they’re worth a hop off the Virginia Beer Trail. To see what's currently on tap at Champion, check them out on Trinkin. HunterChampion0055 Shower Beer (35 IBU, 3.5% ABV) Perfect for any relaxing occasion, this Bohemian Pilsner sings with fresh, clean maltiness and spicy flavor and aroma contributions from 100% traditional Czech Saaz hops. Aged cold on lager yeast for weeks for maximum refreshment. If you’ve never had a Shower Beer, it’s high time. Killer Kolsch (22 IBU, 5% ABV) A hybrid-style beer, this ale is fermented at lager temperatures that produce a clean, bright beer, with mild hop characteristics and irresistible drinkability. 2-row pale malt and Vienna malt combine with Hallertau hops. HunterChampion0077 Stickin’ in My IPA (65 IBU, 7% ABV) This West-Coast style Rye IPA was made with the legendary punk band NOFX and is sure to stick. brewed with spicy rye and a boatload of Simcoe and Falconer’s Flight hops, this is one dank pale ale. Missile IPA (65 IBU, 7% ABV) An American India Pale Ale, with firm bitterness and intense citrusy hop aromas. Made with 2-row pale ale malt and dry-hopped with Simcoe, Cascade, Summit and more for the full experience of an American IPA. HunterChampion0087 HunterChampion0089 Tart (4 IBU, 3% ABV) A traditional sour wheat ale inspired by the German original. Made with wheat and pale malt, this beer is refreshing and quaffable with flavors of sourdough and citrus fruit. Black Me (45 IBU, 6% ABV) This smooth, full-bodied nectar is a middle ground between a dry stout and an imperial stout. Made with wheat and chocolate malt for low bitterness and round mouthfeel. Made with our friends Against Me! HunterChampion0041 Positive Jam (20 IBU, 4.5% ABV) This refreshing, chuggable Spring Ale was brewed with coriander and lavender for an easy-drinking good time. ICBM (85 IBU, 8.5% ABV) We took our Missile IPA and turned it up to 11. A double load of hops lends intoxicating citrus aromatics to balance high alcohol heat. Finishes with smooth residual sweetness. We have liftoff. GHunterChampion0014 Go visit Hunter and the Champion Brewery crew this weekend. You won't regret it. Located at 324 6TH S. ST. Charlottesville, VA.
November 05, 2015 — Molly Szkotak