on the road again

Dunedin Brewery, Tampa, FL

The life of an entrepreneur is never short on dull moments. This weekend I had a unique opportunity to drive a friend’s uncle’s Uhaul to Tampa, Florida. Aside from the monetary compensation, I was able to experience some other perks on the journey, including a local brewpub, the Dunedin Brewery. I arrived in Tampa on Saturday evening around 7 pm, about an hour and half before my hosts. With some time to kill, the Big Gnome found a nearby brewpub for me to grab some dinner.

The brewery was decorated in a very eclectic manner. It had a Scottish thing going on, but it also featured a lot of music paraphernalia. In the background they were playing bluegrass covers of old hair band songs. The food was not your typical pub fare, more like Mexican fusion. I had a blackened mahi wrap with tomatoes and cabbage with a lime sauce that gave it a slight spicy kick. It came with chips and fresh salsa. It was all quite good.

The beer was a pleasant surprise, too. Local brewpubs can be a crap shoot, so you never know. I got a sampler, and I really liked four of the selections, although thought the other three were average. That’s not a bad ratio.

The ones I didn’t care much for were the Octoberfest, Piper’s Pale Ale, and Celtic Gold. While there was nothing offensive about them, I thought they lacked flavor and distinguishing character. For instance, I could not get any aroma out of the pale ale. I might as well have been smelling water. It was strange.

The coolest thing was the bathroom sink
with the beer tap handle.

The evening was redeemed by the final four beers I tried. My favorite was the Rye IPA (what a surprise, my favorite was an IPA!). It had some hop aroma, pleasant hop flavor all the way through and finished with a nice bitter twist. The other highlights were a very roasty and robust nitro stout; the Summer Buzz, which was a high gravity Belgian wheat; and a fruity and spicy Belgian tripel.

Overall, the Dunedin Brewery was a very enjoyable experience and a much welcomed reprieve after 9 hours of driving a Uhaul. It has my seal of approval for anyone visiting the Tampa area.

One other thing I had to mention. This is a reason why you should always take backroads and highways any chance you get to avoid interstates. You get to see stuff like this:

Unfortunately, you can barely make it out because I only had my camera phone with me, but yes, that is a yellow school bus jacked up on Big Foot tires. That is perhaps the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen.

It was quite a long weekend of driving, and while nothing too crazy happened, it was filled with a couple small adventures that made it a fun experience. Most of the little treasures that spice up your life come about in the strangest ways.


About Brian

I like beer.
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3 Responses to on the road again

  1. Pingback: a week-long brewpub crawl « UNTAMEDBEER.COM

  2. Joey says:

    I’ve always thought Dunedin didn’t get enough respect as a brewpub. Yeah some of their brews were a bit tame in the past, but on the whole they make quite decent beer and that alone goes a long way. There are many brewpubs that don’t even hit decent.

    If you are ever back in Tampa you have to check out Tampa Bay Brewing Company, if you haven’t already.

  3. Brian says:

    I saw the Tampa Bay Brewing Company on my list of possibilities, but I was staying in Tarpon Springs that night, so it was further out of my way than Dunedin. Not sure when I’ll be down in those parts again, but I’ll definitely keep it in mind.

    I agree, Dunedin was solid all-around. It’s rare that I’ll like a brewery’s lineup top to bottom, but that’s just my taste, it doesn’t mean it’s not good beer. I know I’m not the final authority on all beer that is good :)

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