Bench Racing and Brew’s- Heist Brewery- Charlotte, North Carolina

I arrived into Charlotte on Thursday night. After my luggage being lost for an hour it was time for a beer.  I started this party by going to Heist Brewery.  They have a unique selection.  They use Belgian Yeast in all of their Brew’s.

I’m a huge Belgian fan so this was pretty exciting for someone like me.

I started out with the “Succession”. 4.5% ABV.   35 IBU. Style: Saison/Farmhouse Ale. Availability: Summer. It smells of lemon grass with yeasty undertones. The flavor is very light.  Light bodied brew.  Has a prickly carbonated finish.  I give it a 3 out of 5 and I wouldn’t hesitate to grab this beer on a hot day after I was done with a race.

Next was Winter is Coming.  8.5% ABV. 31 IBU.  Style: Herbed/Spiced. Availability: Rotating. Smells of cinnamon toast crunch.  Belgian notes come out in the front and has a very wonderful vanilla and cinnamon finish.  Medium body light lacing on the glass.  I imagine this brew would be fantastic to drink around a fire at night around the track whether you’re spectating or driving this would be a great way to end the night.  I give this brew a 4.5/5.

 Shepherd of Fire, and Fire it was. ABV 6.2%. 33 IBU.  Style: Porter. Availability: No availability listed. This habanero porter even smells spicy and toasty.  Roasted cocoa nibs up front with a lingering spice of habanero in the finish.  Luckly this isn’t a spice that builds or sticks around. It comes says hi and then leaves you feeling warm.  If there are tastes of Belgian yeast in this brew they’re being over powered by the spices of the habaneros.  This spicy brew would be a great way to top off a night after you get done driving and you’ve just laid it down and won the event.  What goes better with crushing than burning fire?  I give this brew a 4.5/5.

Cross Pollen-Nation.  7.5% ABV.  20 IBU.  Style: Stout. Availability: Limited (Brewed once). A Stout brewed with Belgian yeast.  Right away I miss the smells and tastes of a Belgian here.  I can smell roasted chocolate and dark fruit.  The upfront flavors are not predominant here very slight roasted cocoa nibs up front and some dark fruits on the finish.  I wish the Belgian yeast and dark fruits had a stronger flavor here.  All in all though still a very good beer.  This is a beer I’d prop my feet up and sit on the couch and turn on the Conti Race. Scoring a 3.5/5 on my scale.

Cross Infatuation.  7.5% ABV.  20 IBU. Style: Stout. Availability: Not Listed. This brew is a Belgian Raspberry Stout.  Smells like the raspberry hot chocolate my mom used to make me when I was a kid.  Very strong delicious smells.  Deep rich chocolate smells with a touch of raspberry.  The taste unfortunately didn’t match the smell as much as I wanted it to.  Has a light chocolate taste upfront and a very strong sweetness in the finish of raspberry.  This beer I feel would be better to have on a cool spring day after a day of testing or even getting the car ready in a cool garage.  I give this brew a 3.5/5.

I highly recommend this place.  Especially if you enjoy Belgians.  I give the Brewery in a whole a 3.8 out of 5.  I wouldn’t hesitate to return the next time I’m in Charlotte, North Carolina.

 

Hilary Anderson - A solo racer that dumps way too much time and money into a crap box CRX to drive around cones. With experience crewing for Rally America, LeMons/Chump and Tudor teams. With a passion for racing and beer which they seem to go together quite nicely. In that order. If you go the other way the officials tend to frown upon it.