On long drives, the temptation is always to go eat at some place you know, which usually means McDonald’s or a Whataburger if you can find one. The last place I wanted to eat, driving through the central part of Arizona was a McDonald’s. Fortunately, the central part of Arizona is free from likes of McDonald’s, at least on the road between Winslow and Payson.
After my previous adventure, I was still in an adventurous mood which is good, because my adventures, small though they may be, were not over. As I was driving through one of the smaller towns, I was looking for a good bar and grill to stop and eat. The problem with most bar and grills is that after eating at one, you end up smelling like one, so I passed by the first several bars I saw.
Then I spotted it. It was more than the typical bar and grill, it was a brewery. It’s called THAT Brewery to be specific. What caught my eye were the large brewing canisters in the front window. As any connoisseur of fine beers knows, you can’t be a true micro-brewery unless you show off the brewing process to the buying consumers.
I was definitely a buying consumer as far as their burgers were concerned. I wasn’t sure I wanted to drink a beer, given my conviction about drinking and driving. So I asked the barmaid (is that still politically correct? Who cares!), if they sold beer to go. The said they sold growlers to go. I didn’t know what a growler was, but if it had beer in it, couldn’t be too bad.
She also let me know I could sample some of the beers before selecting the beer I wanted in my growler. That sounded great. But first things first. I needed a burger. Since I missed out on my weekly trip to Popo’s the previous Sunday, I went for the Southwest Burger since it had green chili on it, along with pepper jack cheese.
Was it good? You bet! Would I get it again! Definitely. Should you get one too? Absolutely!
Full disclosure: it is really hard to ruin a hamburger. That is why I go for hamburgers when on unusual grounds. Nine times out of 10, that is a good philosophy because burgers are hard to mess up, hence why McDonald’s is so successful. But this burger was better than that. It was worth every penny of the $7.99 I paid for it. It’s as good as the burger I get on a regular basis with Jody at Martin’s here in Rowell, although not as big.
It was only after I started eating the burger that I decided to sample some beers so I could buy a growler to take to my brother’s house and share with him. I tried three: the blonde, the strawberry blonde, and the amber. All three were good and none of them had the bight that some beers have. They were smooth, cold and worthy of the stop.
I went with the strawberry blonde for the growler. It was the right choice as well, especially since Gene, my brother, enjoyed it as much as I did.
All-in-all, I would recommend THAT Brewery for anyone driving through Pine, AZ, for their great food, friendly barmaids, good beer and wonderful ambiance (that is atmosphere for those of you in Rio Linda).