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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Spaced Out on Florida's Space Coast: Brews and Beach (Episodes 2, 3 and More)

Tale of a Beach and Two More Breweries....

And, on that first night in the Space Coast, following all that awesome beer at Bugnutty Brewing, the focus turned to food.  Being the diligent planner that I am, I had earlier consulted Google and found Coasters Pub, what looked like a really cool little place in Melbourne at the corner of A1A and Eau Gallie.  Close to the Hilton Melbourne Beach Hotel, good-looking food menu, and, yes, a bunch of beer taps!  No brainer, right?  So, yeah, next stop.  






From The Coasters webpage...See the wall?
Tucked away in a corner of a strip mall, this place has all of what you want in a comfortable pub: 13 TVs, a wall full of beer taps, and a menu of usual bar-type food. There's also a full liquor bar.  It's tough for me to pass up a grilled mahi sandwich, so that caught my eye.  It was a good-size portion of mahi and quite tasty. I brought half of it back for another lunch. The beer menu was extensive, with at least 30 taps and more in bottle, including some local Florida offerings as well.  Being in the Space Coast,  I went with Cocoa Beach Pale Ale, a well-balanced pale ale, which I've had before (more on that later).  Overall, this is a fun place, with a good food and beer menu.  I'll be back on the next visit.  (Actually, went there again on the second night, too!).


Very friendly sort on the beach
It was 3 o'clock somewhere....
Because into every Beertrip, a little rum must fall


Day One ended with an angry night storm and a power outage and some free beer at the hotel. The next morning brought a gorgeous view of the beach from the balcony.  Day Two started with a long walk on the beach (Melbourne Beach is a very good walking beach, by the way), followed by lunch at the pool (yes, another mahi sandwich that was also very good), and then some rum drinks at the pool before meeting up with some craft beer-loving friends who live in the area for the next brewery adventures.


So, headed back out on scenic A1A into Cocoa Beach for a visit to Cocoa Beach Brewing Company. I have had the Cocoa Beach Pale Ale before in the bomber, so I already knew that I liked this one.  Met up with friends David and Marcia--- they had been to Mile Marker a few weeks earlier on one of my bartending shifts, and I really enjoyed beer-chatting with them.  They said if I was ever in the Melbourne area, to let them know, so.....

A Cozy Little Nano-Brewery on A1A....

Walking up to Cocoa Beach Brewing Company is like being in a quaint secluded area, even though it really isn't.  It looks very laid-back and chill.  Very inviting: a brick walkway and yellow siding exterior.  It looks like someone's house that just happens to have a brewery inside.

Inside is a small, cozy seating area with a small bar and a TV.  There is a large table and a comfy couch.  On this day, they offered 6 house beers. Figured I'd try something new, so I  had the End of the Line Pale Ale.  I'm already a fan of the flagship Cocoa Beach Pale Ale.  The End of the Line is just a bit hoppier, but a good, solid pale ale in its own right.  I also tried the Key Lime Cerveza, which is a good lighter beer for the hot temps. I love the atmosphere here, and there's even a small outside patio area.  You feel like you're on vacation here.

It was great seeing David and Marcia again.  You just gotta love meeting craft beer people at one place, and then meeting them again at another brewery!  They live in Melbourne, and it was  like a reunion of sorts, with craft beer! So cool staying in touch with people you meet!



The bartender mentioned that I probably wouldn't be able to get the bombers of the CB Pale Ale any longer up here in St. Augustine, because being a small brewery, it is focusing on distribution in Brevard County.  Guess that means on the next visit here, I'll have to stock up!

The brewery website also lists additional brews that weren't available on this particular day, so next time I'd like to try the Dirty Blonde especially.
Gotta love it!

I also like the artwork and some of the captioning that these guys do.

So, thanks, guys for the hopsitality (is that a typo?), and see you again on the next visit!

Episode 3, or is it 4?..... On to Intracoastal Brewing Co.

Well, that was fun, but we weren't finished yet. Got back on scenic A1A (I just love all things A1A) and headed back to Melbourne.  A right turn on Eau Gallie, over an intracoastal waterway, and on to Intracoastal Brewing Company. I had heard a lot about this place from David, as well as on social media.  The parking lot was crowded when we got there.



Well, the place was bustling, as expected, for a Friday night.  It's not a very big place, but it has a nice long bar and a couple of long, picnic-table-style benches.  Everyone seemed to be having a real good time.  There are two TVs, but I don't think anyone was watching, and I didn't even notice 'em: more focus on your friends and the beer!  Met a couple of the owners/brewers and chatted with the bartender for a while.  Cool place.

You can get glasses of beer in pints, half-pints, or in a smaller flight size. I started off easy with the Lawnmower Lite (full pint, thank you very much).  At 4.5 ABV and 21 IBU, it's definitely easy-drinking, but has a definite "craft-beer" flavor.  Really liked this one, and, yeah, you could have a few of these, no problem.





Cheers!  Lookin' a bit happy there.

The Shade Tree Pale Ale is a Black Pale Ale.  Now, I love a good Black IPA and Dark Ales, but had not had a Black Pale Ale specifically.  There's a bit of citrus here along with a dark roast.  It has a nice aroma, and just enough bitterness, with a smooth finish.  A very good dark ale.  39 IBU, 6.2 ABV.  Look forward to having this one again.

The next one I had to try was the Morning Punch IPA (Coffee IPA). Fruity, citrus and coffee in an IPA?  That's a new one on me.  It's not a dark beer, but you definitely get the coffee aroma and taste.  Not overly hoppy at 70 IBU.  An interesting blend of these flavors, but a good-tasting beer.

Hey, guys, nicely done! Overall, this is a fun and upbeat place, with some really good beer.  It can get loud, but that's part of the appeal.  People enjoying their beers is usually a good thing! On the next visit, I'll look forward to the Red and Amber Ales.

And lastly, I had to get a shirt.  I had seen the post on social media ahead of time, and was looking forward to adding this one to the beer-themed wardrobe

The Back...



And, the Front!

And, that was the Spaced Out in Space Coast brewery tour!  Can't wait to go back!  And, thanks, David and Marcia: great hanging out with ya!

Til next time!