Tucked away on the eastern slope of the Piedmont Mountains, Fayetteville is a culturally diverse small town bolstered by Fort Bragg’s military base. Visited on the way to Sunset Beach, July ’09, there were two brewpubs situated within Fayetteville’s rural confines.

First and foremost, MASH HOUSE BREWERY & CHOPHOUSE had a burgundy and gold sign welcoming customers to its mall-sidled freestanding red brick building (with tan soffit, green roof, painted grain silo, and aluminum-roofed side patio). Exposed steel beams, cement columns, and canopied windows bedecked the wood-furnished interior, where the left side bar had cornered TV’s and the right dining area fronted an open kitchen.

I ate dinner with family in small glass-enclosed area betwixt bar and dinner space. Brewer Zach Hart, who began the local Blues & Brews Festival a few years back, crafted a wide variety of libations in the brass brew kettles behind the bar.

White-breaded sour-doughed pepper-spiced lemony grapefruit light-body Natural Blonde, bubble-gummy banana-clove-fronted coriander-teased white-peppered moderate-body Hefeweizen, and red-orange-fruited hop-toasted malt-sweetened medium-body Ravishing Irish Red went well with Greek and 4-meat pizzas.

Afterwards, enjoyed candi-sugared banana-bruised clove-spiced citric-soured Kristalweizen, similarly styled banana-breaded pear-ripened Belgian Dubbel, and coffee-burnt raisin-pureed Brown Porter.

Busier fare included woody Cascade-hopped black-peppered oats-charred peach-pear-apricot-fruited grapefruit-juniper-embittered Hoppy Hour IPA, creamy mocha-malted, fuzzy raspberry-pureed, orange blossom-honeyed Raspberry Porter, and Jack Daniels whiskey-aged Jack’d Up Stout (a friskier version of black chocolate-y cappuccino-centered licorice-accented barley-roasted Stout).

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