Growlers are said to date back to the late 1800s, when small pails of beer made a growling sound as the beer sloshed around and CO2 escaped from the lid. Today, the growler has evolved into a glass jug with a screw-on cap, usually in a half-gallon size. “The advantage of a growler over a six-pack is that it is the freshest beer possible,” says Hoperatives blogger Carla Gesell-Streeter. “As long as you drink it soon after purchasing.” That has made it increasingly popular, and growler stations have popped up in about a dozen locations (including a coffee-only station at Tazza Mia). Party Town in Florence, for example, has 18 taps ranging from the palest ale (Boulder Brewing Co. Hoopla Pale Ale) to the darkest stout (Southern Tier Jah-va Coffee Stout), allowing adventurous drinkers to sample hard-to-find beers like Avery’s The Beast Grand Cru, a deep burgundy ale with a 16 percent alcohol content and made with plums, raisins, and molasses.
6823 Burlington Pike, Florence
2693 Edmondson Rd., Hyde Park
95 Riviera Dr., Bellevue
Originally published in the August 2011 issue.