ABV is our weekly series that highlights a different beer from a local Pittsburgh brewery every week. Check out our past picks here.
Happy Thanksgiving week!
Given the upcoming holiday – and how much we love our Pittsburgh beers – we’re changing up the format of our weekly beer shoutout.
Today’s edition of ABV leans into the aluminum / growler / crowler availability of local beers you can take home to share with friends and fam. As far as I know, all of our local breweries will close Thursday to observe Thanksgiving; so we’ve curated a list for you to stock up on hump day.
Below is a short list of very Thanksgiving, very Pittsburgh beers available this week.
Pick up a 4-pack. Grab a growler fill. Seal off two or three crowlers to crush after the Turkey Trot. Every brewery does it a little differently, but refer to this guide and let us lead you toward something to pair with your meal and share with your pals.
Here are our (carry-out) picks for Pittsburgh Thanksgiving beers.
ABV, volume XLIII
Hop Farm Brewing
Beer Name: Cranberry Sauce
Style / ABV: Fruited Sour // 7.6% ABV
Why We Recommend It: Described as a delicate sour with a hint of dryness from cranberries, this is the obvious pairing for Thanksgiving dinner. It’s a limited edition seasonal beer, so get it while you can. If you can’t make it to Lawrenceville, Cranberry Sauce is also available as a draft option at Piper’s Pub (Southside).
When Is It Available: Hop Farm is closed on Tuesdays. You’ll want to snag this one on Wednesday (special hours: noon to midnight) and take advantage of $5 off all growler fills. You can also head back on Black Friday (sans discount) for another day of extended hours (noon to midnight).
How Is It Available: If you’re buying for carry out, growler fill is the way to go here.
Dancing Gnome Beer
Beer Name: Yam Jam
Style / ABV: IPA // 6.8% ABV
Why We Recommend It: An annual Thanksgiving treat from the Dancing Gnome team, Yam Jam starts off just like their single-hopped Jam series; then it gets brewed with fresh roasted yams. Just as a clarification: this beer is an IPA, straight up. Don’t expect to get a porter or stout with the dark tones; Yam Jam carries a strong hop profile.
When Is It Available: Get Yam Jam beginning Wednesday at 4pm (at Dancing Gnome in Sharpsburg).
How Is It Available: On draft and available in cans (4-packs for carry out).
Cinderlands Beer Co.
Beer Name: Cherry Apricot Whipper
Style / ABV: Berliner Weisse // 4.6% ABV
Why We Recommend It: I’ve written about Cinderlands’ Whipper series in the past – no doubt, if you are into (slightly) sour, fruited beers, these beers are for you. The Cherry Apricot iteration is subtle and very approachable – at just 4.6% ABV, it’s calm and muted without the same booziness as the other beers on this list. This particular version of Whipper has been re-fermented with sweet cherry, tart cherry and apricot puree. It pairs nicely with starchy, dense food – think big sips to wash down mashed potatoes or stuffing.
When Is It Available: It’s actually available now. Cinderlands Warehouse is open 7 days a week and their Wednesday hours are 11.30am to 10pm. Head over at your leisure; they’ll be open Black Friday from 11.30am to 11.30pm.
How Is It Available: Get a 12-oz draft pour or take a 4-pack of cans for carry out from Cinderlands Warehouse (Strip District location)
Beer Name: Villa (750 mL bottles only)
Style / ABV: Sessionable Brett Beer // 5% ABV
Why We Recommend It: I’m stoked to see Grist House enter the bottle game. Villa is described as a light, effervescent, sessionable brett beer with champagne characteristics and subtle sweetness from being conditioned on peaches. Although it made its official release last week, Villa re-enters the Grist House line-up as a bottle-only option on Wed, November 27.
Grist House will allow guests to consume bottles of Villa on-premise this Wednesday. That being said, if you’re buying for carry-out, this classy, slightly tart, thoughtfully aged ale will definitely perk the interests of your beer nerd friends. Highly recommend this one.
When Is It Available: Starting at 5pm on Wednesday, you can get 750 mL bottles of Villa at the Grist House digs in Millvale. You can also head back to the taproom on Black Friday for their extended happy hour which runs 2pm to 7pm.
How Is It Available: 750 mL bottles only
East End Brewing
Beer Name: Polish Hill
Style / ABV: Festbier // 5.7% ABV
Why We Recommend It: I tried Polish Hill at Kaibur…in Polish Hill. It’s delicious. Each of the You Are Here: Neighborhood beers in the East End series has been marked by a small release party in the corresponding neighborhood of its namesake.
Polish Hill is a lovely Oktoberfest-style lager with a malty characteristic. Pils, Munich and Vienna malts all contribute to this flavorful, festive beer. At 5.7% ABV, it hits the mark for a nice post-meal beer you can share with folks who enjoy traditional German-style lagers.
When Is It Available: It’s available now. East End’s Wednesday hours are 4pm to 9pm and they’ll re-open for Black Friday from 2pm to 10pm. Polish Hill has limited availability; it’s been a few weeks since its initial release as part of East End’s You Are Here: Neighborhood beer series. Supply may be dwindling.
How Is It Available: Polish Hill is available in 4-packs of cans only.
Abjuration Brewing Co
Beer Name: Coffee Stout v1.3
Style / ABV: Coffee Stout // 6.6% ABV
Why We Recommend It: This recommendation actually comes from Stephanie on the Very Local team who tried Abjuration’s coffee stout, then said: ‘This is the best stout I have ever had in my life.’ There you have it.
This full body stout carries a roasty character with mild notes of dark cocoa and burnt toffee. Coffee Stout v1.3 was brewed using bourbon barrel aged coffee from small batch, specialty roaster Oak and Bond Coffee. Highly recommend this stout and highly recommend swinging over to McKees Rocks to meet the Abjuration guys; their friendly, non-pretentious, goofy vibe has captured my heart since they launched the brewery and taproom in late 2017.
When Is It Available: We saved this one for last because – unfortunately – you’ll have to wait til Black Friday (or Saturday for Abjuration’s 2-year anniversary party) to get this beer.
How Is It Available: Get a draft pour (4-oz // 8-oz // 16-oz) in the taproom or snag a 4-pack of 16-oz cans to-go.