When I recently traveled to that southwestern corner of the state, I made sure to visit a couple of craft beer destinations. I reached out to Upland Brewing's Cari Crowe, who grew up around Evansville. She gave me a list of places to check out. I only had time for two stops. Other places mentioned for consideration, and for probable future visits, included The Deerhead, Fox & Hound, Old Chicago Pizza, Ri Ras, Bar Louis, and the Peephole. Here are my notes about the two stops I did make.
The only microbrewery in Evansville is Turoni's Main Street, which now has three locations. I made my way to their original location on a dark and stormy night, which is why my collection of photos is not that great. But I sampled their beers and took notes.
-Vinny's Light Lager: it's light but tasty. Plenty of German malts. Pilsner. hops are very light. Light gold color.
-Honey Blonde Ale: Middle of the road. Honey comes through. Has a bitter that I'm not enjoying much. Clear bronze color.
-Thunderbolt red ale: Alt beer. Malts. Some bitterness along the side of the tongue. Dark amber color. Slightly chewy. Full mouth.
-Blue Eyed Moose IPA: A sweet butterscotch nose and flavor. I mentioned this to Nick the bartender, who promptly declared me crazy. Dark clear gold. Dry finish. Nice balance of hops.
-Ol' 23 Stout: Dark black with dark tan head. Lots of malt. Dark chocolate bittersweet.
-Uptown Rye Brown Ale: Dark clear brown. Chocolate rye malts. Cascade hops. Dry with rye and hop bite. Light on bittersweet.
As for the food, I ordered a Stromboli, which was frickin' HUGE, and chili cheese fries. The fries were skinny, the cheese was nacho-style, and the chili was like coney sauce.
Turoni's Main Street will be at the Indiana Microbrewers Festival on July 17th. If you can't make it to Evansville, then check them out when they bring Evansville to you.
The next day, I visited The Gerst Haus with a couple of friends with Evansville area ties. This German American restaurant is located in a former feed store in the downtown area. It is a wonderful bar and restaurant with the typical food that you would expect to find on a German American restaurant menu. I will point out that the deep fried oysters appetizer is a wonderfully salty starter.
You will also find a large collection of draft lines with typical German beers that you would typically find on a German American restaurant beer menu. What was atypical were the number of craft beers on tap.
On this particular day, they had Founder's Double Trouble on tap. And they served them in goblets (frosted goblets, unfortunately). And I ordered two. I ordered a double Double Trouble From what both Cari and bartender Nick told me, this place has the best craft beer lineup. And it was pretty spectacular. Though I never made it past the Double Troubles.