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RVA Beer Explorer

RVA Beer Explorer: Cinema by the Creek, Crabs Beers & Spirits, Paws on the Patio, Circle the Wagons BBQ, Full Hardywood Gingerbread Stout Lineup Released

Tuesday is the new Thursday. Get all your weekend brewery/beer plans started today with these events.





Cinema by the Creek: Jungle Cruise at Hardywood (West Creek)
August 26th

Movies outside are always cool and this movie is much better than I expected. Cinema masterpiece? hell no but entertaining enough while quaffing a few beers.

Cinema by the Creek is back in action with Jungle Cruise!
Synopsis: Dr. Lily Houghton enlists the aid of wisecracking skipper Frank Wolff to take her down the Amazon in his ramshackle boat. Together, they search for an ancient tree that holds the power to heal — a discovery that will change the future of medicine.
This is a family friendly and free event! Grab your picnic blankets and spread out for a fun evening by the creek.
WC Food: Cucumbers on Fire + Jiji Frozen Custard

3rd Annual Crabs, Beer & Spirits by the James at Brown’s Island
August 27th

When getting crabby is a good thing. Head to Brown’s Island and get your fill of crab. I’ve never been so I can’t comment on the quality of crustaceans but I’ve never heard horror stories so I consider that a major win.

The Crab Festival is back. Bigger & Better.

All you can eat Crabs, Live Bands and Vendors. Rain or Shine
The All you can eat Crab Festival. There will be Hot & Fresh Crabs, Live Bands featuring Butcher Brown Band, Legacy Band and more and 4 DJs such as Joe Fu, DJ Drake and DJ Sir RJ . There will be food vendors, merchandise vendors, etc.

Lawn Chairs are allowed, NO COOLERS, NO TENTS

Paws on the Patio at Stone Brewing
August 27th

I’m a fan of dogs, the SPCA, and beer. This event should have all three. While traveling around the state this past week we went to many breweries and met many fine dogs. Stella the Great Dane was great and just beat out Honey the kind of round Golden Retriever for Best Brewery Dog Seen While on Vacation Award.

It is Stone Brewing’s 26th anniversary, and to celebrate we wanted to work with the community, so we are hosting another Paws on the Patio!

A percentage of draft pours for the day will be donated to the Richmond SPCA. A representative from the Richmond SPCA will be on-site for you to learn more about their lifesaving work!

All pets are welcome on our patio as long as they are leashed and under owner’s control. Bring your furry friends to grab a refreshing beverage and food from our Live Buena food trailer!

Taproom Hours: 12-9pm
Food Trailer Hours: 12-8pm

Circle the Wagons BBQ and Music Festival at Center of the Universe Brewing
August 27th

So far on this Explorer we’ve offered up beer & crabs, beer & dogs, and now beer & BBQ. The options seem truly limitless if you like BBQ, dogs, and crabs, so not limitless but still pretty good.

🔥 Round up your friends, family, and neighbors for the 4th Annual Circle the Wagons BBQ Cook-off and Concert benefiting Circles Ashland.
4 BBQ vendors, 2 awesome bands, and 1 great cause are all you need on a Summer Saturday. There will be 50/50 raffles, a new custom brew, indoor arcade, and yard games! As always, the event is FREE to attend and open to all ages.

Jake’s Place
Legendary Provisions
Mike’s Rollin’ Smoke BBQ
Salty Pig

A panel of 10 judges will taste 1 Chicken, Pork, and Beef dish from each of our incredibly talented BBQ Vendors. They will deliberate at the festival, and trophies will be awarded. There will also be a special Overall Winner Award which will be comprised of the top finisher in all 3 categories.

Famous People
1:00pm – 3:30pm
Scattered Smothered and Covered

Circles Ashland is a local non-profit offering relationship-based, community-driven initiatives that inspire, inform, and equip individuals, families, and community to resolve poverty and thrive.
Circles Ashland connects middle- and upper-income community members with motivated people in our community who are experiencing poverty for a two-year, in-depth, and intentional relationship that connects the person in poverty with support, education, networks, and resources in Ashland. We also work to inform the local community about systemic barriers to overcoming poverty and how to eliminate those barriers using strategies that work right here in Ashland.
At Circles Ashland, we believe poverty is an issue that requires “all hands on deck”- community residents, businesses, local government, other non-profits, friends, neighbors.
Find out more about their great cause here:


Let the Hardywood Gingerbread Stout Mania begin early, Hardywood has released their Gingerbread Stout schedule. I’m so old I remember when they only had Gingerbread Stout and everybody was happy with that one. I’ll now shuffle back to rocker muttering about those darn kids.

Hardywood Park Craft Brewery has released the line-up for their 2022 Gingerbread Stout Complete Set. The much anticipated annual release includes twelve Gingerbread Stout variants and the Complete Set receives two packaged cans or bottles of each flavor variation. This year’s set includes:

  • (2) 16oz Can The Original Gingerbread Stout, 9.2% ABV, Imperial Milk Stout with Virginia Grown Hawaiian White Ginger and Local Wildflower Honey, 100 Rating BeerAdvocate Magazine, 2012 Bronze Medal, Herb and Spice Beer, World Beer Cup, Top 25 Milk Stout in the World,
  • (2) 16oz Can Christmas Morning, 9.2% ABV, Gingerbread Stout with Locally Roasted Guatemalan and Colombian coffee from Blanchard’s, Top 25 Milk Stout in the World,, 2015 Gold Medal, Specialty Beer, Rate Beer Best
  • (2) 16oz Can Christmas Pancakes, 9.2% ABV, Gingerbread Stout with Local Maple Syrup, Outstanding Rating,
  • (2) 16 oz Can Gingerbread Porter, 9.2% ABV, Imperial Porter with Local White Ginger and Local Wildflower Honey, Lactose Free
  • (2) 12oz Stubby Bottle Bourbon Barrel GBS, 11.5% ABV, Gingerbread Stout Aged in a combination of A. Smith Bowman and Heaven Hills Bourbon Barrels, 2017 Gold Medal by Style, Rate Beer Best, Top 20 Milk Stout in the World,
  • (2) 12oz Stubby Bottle Kentucky Christmas Morning, 11.5% ABV, Gingerbread Stout Aged exclusively in Kentucky’s own Heaven Hills Bourbon barrels with Locally Roasted Guatemalan and Colombian coffee from Blanchard’s, Top 10 Milk Stout in the World,
  • (2) 12oz Stubby Bottle Bourbon Barrel Caliente GBS, 13% ABV, A colossal version of ourGingerbread Stout conditioned with ancho chiles and extra cinnamon, aged 26 months in Heaven Hill bourbon barrels
  • (2) 12oz Stubby Bottle Apple Brandy GBS Blend, 11.7% ABV, A Blend of Imperial Milk Stout Aged 16 Months and 8 months in Laird’s Apple Brandy Barrels Spiced with all your favorite Gingerbread Spices *Taproom Only Release*
  • (2) 12oz Stubby Bottle Gingerbread Bourbon Barleywine, 14.5% ABV, Gingerbread Spiced Barleywine Aged for 8 Months in McKenna Bourbon Barrels, 2022 Virginia Craft Beer Guild Bronze Medal *Taproom Only Release*
  • (2) 12oz Stubby Bottle The Flannel, 12.3 % ABV, Inspired by a classic cocktail, this blend of Apple Brandy, Rum, and Cognac barrel-aged Imperial Stout and Golden Ale has been conditioned on allspice and a touch of orange peel and will leave you feeling warm and cozy. New! Complete Set Exclusive!
  • (2) 16oz Can Toasted Fluffy, 9.2 % ABV, All the flavors of a gingerbread cookie s’mores with flavors of toasted marshmallow, graham crackers, chocolate, and classic GBS spices. New! Complete Set Exclusive!
  • (2) 12oz Stubby Bottle Granny’s GBS, 12.1 % ABV, Fresh out of the oven, this fruitcake-inspired holiday libation is a blend of 11-month Bourbon barrel aged Belgian Quadrupel and Gingerbread Stout aged 9 months in bourbon-finished Port barrels brought to us by our friends at A. Smith Bowman’s Distillery. Decadent, warming, and just like Granny’s fruitcake, this beer is finished with dates, cherries, dark fruits, and a touch of citron. New! Complete Set Exclusive!

This exclusive box set is available to the public starting September 12th for online pre-purchase. Members of Hardywood’s Family Tree Beer Club get early access to purchase complete sets, along with pre-purchase opportunities on taproom only releases. Slots in the 2023 Family Tree are open to the public now. Sets are limited and are available for taproom pick-up, Richmond area delivery, and shipping within Virginia.

The Hardywood taproom release schedule is:

  • 11/5/22: Gingerbread Stout + Gingerbread Porter
  • 11/12/22: Bourbon GBS
  • 11/19/22: Christmas Pancakes + Bourbon Caliente (taproom release only)
  • 11/26/22: Christmas Morning + Kentucky Christmas Morning
  • 12/3/22: Apple Brandy GBS Blend (taproom release only)
  • 12/10/22: Gingerbread Bourbon Barleywine (taproom release only)


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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.