Blue Mountain Brewery
9519 Critzer Shop Road
Afton, VA
(540) 456-8020
Visited on June 30, 2012

My fiancé and I were driving to an Eric Hutchinson show this past June from Blacksburg to Richmond, Virginia. Though there’s not much between the two cities, there is a smattering of brewpubs along the way. The most convenient timing-wise and close-to-the-highway-wise was a spot outside of Charlottesville called Blue Mountain Brewery.

Located on the side of a mountain, the scenery is beautiful. The restaurant portion of the building is spacious, they have a great patio with adjoining gardens, and the spaces available for special events are beautiful. A more scenic venue for a brewpub I do not believe I have come across.

The place was packed for lunch on that Saturday afternoon, probably because a nasty wind storm had destroyed most of the power lines in the area. Luckily for Blue Mountain, and for us, they had backup generators.

And they were at full force.

I found the beer to be pretty decent, with a wide assortment of lighter beers ranging from lagers to pale ales to IPAs. And that’s too bad, because their imperial stout on draft was absolutely amazing. Weighing in at more than 10 percent, the barrel-aged heavy-hitter was extremely well done. They ought to think about doing more dark beers, even in the summer time.

The food was very good, but nothing too memorable. My fiancé and I split a couple of sandwiches, the crabcake sandwich and a spicy thai burger. We were happy to pay $10 per sandwich for the quality that was served, but wasn’t blown away by either offering. So while the place receives very high marks for quality, locally-sourced ingredients and a fairly inventive menu, it falls short of perfect marks based on the lack of a wow factor.

The service staff was crazy busy. There was something like an hour wait or more when we arrived. Luckily, we managed to slide into a couple of spots at the bar. The bartender was happy to charge my phone for me behind the bar, which was nice.

All in all, I feel like we likely will be back, even though it is so very far away from us. But if you live close, it’s well worth a stop on a regular basis.

Location: 20
Food: 18
Beer: 17
Service: 17
Overall: 18
Total: 90

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