Having gone through many of North Carolina’s breweries, Bull City stacks up well against others. I did a flight of the seven beers they had on tap on Nov. 26, which consisted of:
US/UK hybrid ale
Oatmeal stout served on nitrogen
All the beers were very good, but none absolutely blew me away. I liked the pumpkin the most because unlike other pumpkin ales, this one did a good job at finding a balance between pumpkin flavor (I was told they used 300 pounds of pumpkin, but the server didn’t know for what quantity of beer) and spices. The bar didn’t have details on what spices were used, but if you think of the options for a pumpkin pie – nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger – you’ll get a general idea. It doesn’t taste as sweet as Pumking, but it’s probably among the better pumpkin ales I’ve had. The pumpkin flavor was set off just slightly by a vanilla malty taste. I would drink this often, not just in the fall.
The rest were all good and very easy to drink. I’m generally not a fan of goldens, but Bull City’s version was good. It was light and crisp and better than any mass produced version you’ll find at any grocery store across the country. The pale ale was solid and not too hoppy … the hybrid was VERY easy to drink but didn’t have a true discernible taste that would make me want to drink a lot of it … the bock was lighter than most commercial bocks you’ll find without a heavy taste … the black lager got a very similar reaction from me as the bock … the oatmeal stout was good but I would’ve loved to have it on cask instead of nitrogen. The mouthfeel was what I expected it to be – smooth – but the flavor didn’t distinguish itself from other oatmeal stouts.
Like I said – they were all good and easy to drink. Kudos for the fact that they would probably work well with food from the menu, although I didn’t eat when I stopped by. I will certainly be a repeat customer to test that.