I was excited to read that Red Dragon Brewery in Fredericksburg has added cask ale to their lineup. They acquired a traditional hand-pumped beer engine from a closed pub in the U.K. and tapped the first beer this weekend. Colleen and I stopped by after lunch on Saturday to try it out.
The beer being served from cask was Daffodil Welsh Ale, a 4.1% ABV English Bitter. The beer was an attractive golden yellow with a frothy pump-induced head. The flavor was moderately bitter with a touch of fruitiness. The hand-pump adds a softness to the mouthfeel that "normally" poured beers lack. We thoroughly enjoyed both the beer and the serving style.
The brewery had twelve beers on tap during this visit, in addition to the cask. That made my decision on a second beer all the more difficult. My love for hops finally won out, and I ordered a Sideways IPA. This is a double dry hopped IPA. The flavor is bold, full of juicy hops, and with a moderate 6.7% ABV.
The food available at Red Dragon is limited to snacks, mostly chips and caramel corn. On a prior visit some packaged food from a local caterer was available. Visitors are welcome, and encouraged, to bring along whatever food they wish to enjoy with the beer. Or you can just enjoy the beer.
We've visited Red Dragon on several occasions since they opened last summer. I've tried nine different beers from the brewery and have never been disappointed. The brewery offers a variety of styles, and the beers are solid and well-done. There were a number of interesting sounding beers on tap that I have yet to try, but our time was limited. I'm looking forward to going back soon.