Fredericksburg's first brewpub, Battlefield Brewing opened in October of last year, and they've been slowing adding to their repertoire of beers. Last week, the brewery's first IPA made its debut and I stopped by Friday evening to try out Khyber Pass IPA. Brewer Lyle Brown tells me he used Munich Caramel 40 and Carastan malts, plus a touch of wheat in producing the beer. Khyber Pass IPA is hopped with Centennial, Cascade and Amarillo hops. The beer is finished by dry hopping with those same hops. This presents a beer light in aroma, but well-balanced in flavor and slightly bitter. The finish is dry with a lingering bitterness. This IPA checks in at 5.7% ABV, which is on the low side for an IPA but makes the beer quite quaffable. It went very well with my dinner of fish & chips.
Battlefield Brewing is located in The Pub. The Pub is located in a shopping center and consists of both a smoking pub and a non-smoking dining room. I've written in the past how the two sides, in practice, were not well-separated. Even on the non-smoking side, the smoke was very heavy at times. This was the first time I've visited since Virginia's restaurant smoking restriction went into affect. Since the two sides of the establishment are "technically" distinct, smoking is still allowed on the pub side. Management has added a swinging door between the two that is only used by staff, and this does help the situation. I was in the restaurant for about three hours and there was very little cigarette odor bleeding over.
When we placed our food orders, our waitress Laura remarked that she reads these Musings. "I've read the whole thing" she noted. Later, when one of our party ordered a (non-house) beer, she made a point of asking if his preference was for a room temperature or frosted mug. Good show Laura. (Although he chose incorrectly in my opinion.)
Reduced smokiness, and a growing selection of locally brewed beers makes The Pub and Battlefield Brewing a place you don't want to miss. BTW, Monday night is "Meet the Brewer Night." All house beers are $2.50/pint from 7:00 PM on, and one of the brewers is in attendance for an hour or two, depending on the crowd.