Ramble On

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Alexandria's Port City Brewery

Here are some kegs waiting to be filled in the bottling area.
Our second outing of the day last Saturday was a brewery tour at Port City Brewing in Alexandria.  (It occurs to me that I took some photos at Jefferson Street Brewery in Lynchburg earlier this month – I’ll go back to see if I posted on that, and put up an update if I didn’t.) 

Port City is a comparatively large brewery for a craft operation, with six regular brews and several seasonal brews.  I noted that their boiler capacity was 30 barrels, and their fermentation tanks are 120 barrels – so they can put out some beer!  They started in 2011 and are already distributed throughout the mid-Atlantic.

Thirty barrel mash and boiling tuns - or kettles, if you prefer.
On the tour we learned about the history of brewing in Alexandria – the following is a quote from their web site:

The historic port city of Alexandria, VA has a proud tradition of brewing beer for the region that dates back to the 19th Centure.  Founded in 1866, the Robert Portner Brewing Company operated in Alexandria for almost 50 years.  It grew to become the largest brewery in the southern United States, and was Alexandria’s largest employer.  The company thrived until 1915, when Prohibition came to Virginia, and the brewery went out of business.

Port City says their mission “is to be a reliable and innovative regional brewer of top quality beers that are delicious and well balanced, made from the finest ingredients available, and which celebrate their raw materials.”
Speaking of raw materials, this silo holds 100,000 pounds
of pilsener malt for the craft brews.

We enjoyed a little tasting of the Witbier before our tour began.  The tour included sampling for other beers too, but we passed since it was early.  We saved the tickets they gave us for a rain check, though, so we’ll definitely go back!

Here’s a link to the web site:

This is the hop-infuser.  I believe it is used for adding hops
during secondary, and may be similar to the torpedo
process used by Sierra Nevada.

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