Carolina Brewery's Sky Blue Golden Ale is light, easy-sipping stuff made for summer. But until recently the beer was available in kegs and 64-ounce growlers only, rendering it unfit for beaches or boats. As of the end of April, however, the Kolsch style ale is ready to pack up and go in six-packs of 12-ounce cans.
Jodi Hackney, senior kitchen manager and catering coordinator at Carolina Brewery, believes the new containers will make the beer more accessible. "Where you can't take glass, you can take the cans," she says. Carolina Brewery's venture into portable, seasonal beers won't end with the summer season. The brewery plans to introduce a second canned brew for the fall.
Look for the brewery's cans throughout the Triangle at Whole Foods, Weaver Street Markets, Sam's Quick Shop in Durham, and Carrboro Beverage Company. The cans are also available at Carolina Brewery's Pittsboro and Chapel Hill locations (120 Lowes Drive, No. 100, Pittsboro; 460 W. Franklin St., Chapel Hill; www.carolinabrewery.com), and will make their way into grocery chains between the Triangle and the coast later this year.
Cans aren't the only buzz at the Pittsboro brewpub this spring. May kicks off the brewery's farmers market, which takes place in its parking lot between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. every Saturday throughout the summer. Expect fresh North Carolina seafood, produce, and meats. The latter comes from Lilly Den Farm in Goldston, which feeds its livestock with grains from Carolina Brewery. To sample Lilly Den's beef, order a burger at the brewpub. The market is also well-stocked with baked goods from the Bread Shop in Pittsboro and the brewery's own Hopshop bakery.
At 7 p.m. on Saturdays, the Pittsboro brewery will host its annual Patio Music Series. May 14 boasts Puritan Rodeo. To see who's up next, visit Carolina Brewery's website.
May 14 marks the start of the Rivermill Music Series (www.rivermillvillage.com) in Saxapahaw, with a performance by Mandolin Orange on a hay wagon stage. Throughout the summer, concerts will be held in conjunction with the Saxapahaw Farmers' Market on Saturday evenings between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. in downtown Saxapahaw.
Patrons are encouraged to bring picnic blankets and enjoy fresh food from the market. A rotating lineup of food trucks will also be on hand to sell meals. And nearby, the Eddy and Saxapahaw General Store will offer food for carryout.
Bubbles, slip-n-slides and an array of crafts are available for children. To see a full schedule of events, visit the event website.
Michael Gomes of Durham's Indian Food Truck (www.twitter.com/IndianFoodTruck) has announced plans to teach Indian cooking classes beginning in June. Gomes is waiting to set an exact schedule, but anticipates offering courses on evenings and weekends at Durham's Cookery (1101 W. Chapel Hill St., www.DurhamCookery.com). An Indian meal will be provided at each class. For more information, contact Gomes at 452-2382.
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