Harvest Time: 7 Beers Brewed With Produce

In North Carolina, the relationship between people and food is significant — and it begins with the support of local agriculture. From family-run sweet potato farms to the squash at your local farmers market, North Carolina has it all.

Many of the state’s breweries are inspired by North Carolina agriculture, especially at this time of year. It’s easy to associate autumn with pumpkin beer, but our state’s love of local produce runs deeper than that. To celebrate harvest season, here are seven beers brewed with seasonal fruits and vegetables.

Dromgoole • Mystery Brewing Company
There’s pumpkin beer, and then there’s Dromgoole. While other breweries may use pumpkin pie spices in their pumpkin brews, Mystery takes it a giant step further: Whole pumpkin pies are added three times during the brewing process.

437 Dimmocks Mill Road Suite 41, Hillsborough, NC 27278

Chocolate Pumpkin Ale • Pisgah Brewing
Another unusual pumpkin offering, Pisgah Brewing’s Chocolate Pumpkin Ale, is made with more than 1,000 pounds of fire-roasted pumpkins grown by nearby New Sprout Farms. Once brewed, it’s aged with raw cacao nibs from French Broad Chocolates. We’re calling this one Thanksgiving dessert in a pint glass.

150 Eastside Drive, Black Mountain, NC 28711

St. Tuber • Birdsong Brewing Company
Keep an eye out for Birdsong’s St. Tuber, which became available in mid-October. This abbey ale is brewed with more than 300 pounds of North Carolina’s state vegetable: the sweet potato. The rich, full-bodied, Belgian-style beer is finished with fresh cloves.

1016 North Davidson Street, Charlotte, NC 28206

Fearrington Fall • Fullsteam Brewery
Fullsteam’s seasonal fall offering is a rye IPA brewed with apple pomace, the solid pulp that remains after the fruit has been pressed for juice. The result is a well-balanced, medium-bodied beer with a zesty rye nose and a sweet finish.

726 Rigsbee Avenue, Durham, NC 27701

Alpha vs. Beta Carotene • Fonta Flora Brewery
Morganton’s Fonta Flora Brewery prides itself on its embrace of local agriculture, and Alpha vs. Beta Carotene — an IPA infused with local carrots from A Way of Life Farm in Rutherfordton — is one of its earthiest offerings. Pouring a transparent orange, the finish is bright and hoppy.

317 North Green Street, Morganton, NC 28655

Apple Harvest Ale • Oak & Dagger Public House
Oak & Dagger’s Apple Harvest Ale is a crisp, light, and refreshing beer brewed with apples and warm spices, such as nutmeg and cloves. The beer pours a hazy gold, and the spicy notes give way to a piecrust finish.

18 Seaboard Avenue #150, Raleigh, NC 27604

Buster Brown Ale • Dingo Dog Brewing Company
One of Dingo Dog Brewing Company’s flagship beers, the Buster Brown Ale, changes as often as the seasons. Depending on what’s growing at PlowGirl Farms outside of Carrboro, where Dingo Dog is headquartered, Buster Brown may be infused with anything from roasted pecans to butternut squash. The nano-brewery isn’t open to the public, so click here to find out where it’s on tap.

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Ethan Butler is a freelance web developer based in Durham and a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Media and Journalism. Butler helped create Our State’s BEER NC and continues to update the app with new information regularly.