Last week I profiled Outer Banks Brewing Station, America’s first wind-powered brew pub, in the first stop on the Brew Tour. For this week’s Brew Tour, we stay in North Carolina for a stop at the Weeping Radish Farm Brewery. The Weeping Radish is a long-established North Carolina brand, and their Grandy, N.C. location certainly brings its own unique aspects to the table. With their own beer brewed on-site, the Weeping Radish takes it a step further by also growing all of their own fruits and vegetables and butchering their own meats.
Just like OB Brewing Station, the Weeping Radish was featured in the Food Network show Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives hosted by the always polarizing Guy Fieri. Both are well established in the North Carolina area, even as transient as that area can be. It is hard to miss the Weeping Radish on the side of the under-developed land running alongside Caratoke Highway, and that’s for more reasons than the fact that there really isn’t anything else around. A large, farmhouse-type building, the Weeping Radish may not necessarily look inviting as a restaurant, but it certainly draws your eye.
(Quick Aside: I think that this is a great time to mention that Guy Fieri – or at least his Times Square restaurant – is the topic of one of the great things that I have ever read. Pete Wells was just a master of the rhetorical question and it was tremendous.)
When you first step in to the Weeping Radish, you quickly realize that the large outside appearance is also embraced on the inside. With a wide-open floor plan, space is plentiful. The spacious interior makes it easy to find anything you’ll need during your visit. The take-out beer fridge on the right where the offer 22-ounce bottles, 1-liter bottles, and cases of 22-ounce bottles. The meat counter on the left where you can purchase any of the meats butchered and prepared by the Weeping Radish including their famous sausages and brats. Really, it’s a beautiful thing, if you ask me.
Also, the Weeping Radish runs a cool promotion where if you return a finished 1-liter swing-top bottle, you can get $2 off your next beer purchase there. A great, green promotion to tie-in to the eco-friendly farm-to-table mentality that the rest of the restaurant embodies.
Sitting down for lunch after a round of golf — I highly recommend the Carolina Club — I ordered a bratwurst sandwich with grilled onion instead of kraut. The brat was absolutely delicious and, most importantly, it tasted incredibly fresh. They certainly let the farm-to-table freshness shine through, which seems self-explanatory but not always pulled off to its fullest potential.
I got the opportunity to try fried pickles for the first time as well, at the urging of my brother. Mark me down as a believer! Lightly breaded and not overpowering the actual pickle, they are definitely a dangerous snack to have at the table.
While at lunch I tried the Carolina Gold, a golden lager. It was light for a lager, which made it good for after our morning-18. A little bit sweet with its honey-gold color, the Carolina Gold wasn’t the greatest beer I’ve ever had but it is certainly a good one.
We also got a 1-liter bottle of the Weeping Radish’s signature beer, the Black Radish. True to the name, Black Radish is a darker lager and the darkness certainly adds to the flavor. While you get some bitterness from the beer’s hops, you also get the rich roasted flavor to back it up making for a complex and enjoyable flavor. Listed as one of the “50 beers to try before you die,” it’s easy to see — well, taste — why Weeping Radish’s Black Radish is on the list.
Overall, our visit to the Weeping Radish Farm Brewery was an enjoyable one. We didn’t have to wait when we went because we went for a very late lunch, but the place certainly gets packed during peak meal times. Although it would be worth the wait, get there either early or late to avoid massive crowds. If you enjoy fresh food and craft beer, the Weeping Radish Farm and Brewery is certainly a can’t miss when travelling to North Carolina.
Brew Tour #1: Outer Banks Brewing Station