NoDa Brewing | CAVU Blonde Ale
ABV: 4.6% | IBU: 18
From the western mountains to the eastern ocean, we’ve covered beers from all over North Carolina. We’ve been through tiny townships and out-of-the-way places. We’ve even visited the capital city. Yet, despite all of these, we’ve neglected one very prominent brewer from the biggest city in the great state of North Carolina, until today. That city is Charlotte, and the brewer is NoDa Brewing.
The beer of the moment is their CAVU Blonde Ale. “CAVU”, for those of us who don’t pilot airplanes, is a flight term meaning “Ceiling And Visibility Unlimited”. In other words, conditions are perfect for flying. While conditions don’t need to be perfect for drinking, CAVU is probably best enjoyed during the steamy North Carolina summer.
True to its name, it pours a light straw color with a moderate amount of shimmering white head. When the foam dissipates, it leaves a thin film over the surface of the beer, and it follows you down the inside of the glass as you drink. It smells crisp and clean with bright, citrusy hops that are never over-powered. The flavor is cool and refreshing, but what makes it stand out is the hint of tropical fruit, especially pineapple. Light-to-medium bodied, this beer won’t weigh you down or destroy your palate. And at 4.6% ABV, it’s easily sessionable. On a hot summer day, you’d be hard-pressed to do better than CAVU blonde ale.
You can pick it up all over and around the Charlotte area. Outside Charlotte, you’ll need to be in Asheville, Chapel Hill/Durham, or Fayetteville. I found it at Bull Craft Bottle Shop in south Durham, but the Beer Study in Chapel Hill also keeps it in stock. For additional locations, check out NoDa’s brew finder page.