ROYAL OAK, MICHIGAN
Two blocks from Lily’s Seafood (off Main Street) lies freestanding blue-collar red-bricked column-roofed ROYAL OAK BREWERY (originally perused August ’04). Great bottled Belgian beer selection (Chimay-Corsendonk-Delirium-Lindeman’s-Boon) complemented good on-tap assortment at wood-tabled slate-floored joint.
American food fare (brick oven pizza/ pasta/ sandwiches) included tasty Beer Co. Beef Tips (with blue cheese-horseradish dip) while discounted $4 growler refills were available on Tuesdays.
Tried black cherry-influenced nut-charred espresso-roasted coffee-dried Wanna Stout, spice-hopped citric-tinged Royal Oak Red Ale, hop-bitten apple-peach-pear-imbued Brewhouse ESB, and diacetyl grapefruit-mellowed Northern Light Pilsner. Crown jewel: alcohol-burnt Scotch-malted prune-strewn Anniversary Ale #9, with its piney nectar-bruised orange-soured cherry-ripened floral-hop bitterness.
During ’06 stop, tried essential chocolate-roasted earthen-hopped maple-tarred walnut-chestnut-hazelnut-charred Pappy’s Porter and red licorice-like grape-soured fig-dried Belgian-styled Dubbel Trubbel.