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Small Business: Welcome to the Crafty Beer Guys’ bungalow

Crafty Beer Guys is snuggled between other bungalows on Old Statesville Road. Since they opened in 2013, I have visited several times, sometimes to sit and relax, other times to run in for my husband’s favorite beer, Blue Mountain’s Dark Hollow.

There are two parts to the Crafty Beer Guys – they are both a store for the individual and a source of technical services for businesses. The owners, Kristian Pedersen and Shawn Richards, build, install and maintain custom and standard draft systems.

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A draft system includes the tap where the beer is poured out to the lines that lead to a refrigerated area with kegs as well as the CO2 system that drives it. Pedersen and Richards recognized that with the growth of craft breweries, draft systems needed care if brewers wanted to keep the integrity of their beer.

Yeast and remnants of the last beer on tap can give the beer a bad taste. With a staff of 18 technicians, they clean the draft lines of some of Charlotte’s favorite breweries like NoDa Brewing, Olde Mecklenburg Brewery, Triple C Brewing, Sycamore Brewing, Wooden Robot Brewery and Sugar Creek Brewing.

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Chris Westgard manages the Crafty Beer Guys store front. He is a certified Cicerone, an internationally recognized standard for beer service knowledge. The store focuses on offering specialty beer and wine.

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They carry obscure European brews like Dark Force from Haand Bryggeriet in Norway and limited editions like Cold Mountain.

With a relaxed atmosphere, Crafty Beer Guys offers inside and outside seating. Although they do not serve food, Lupie’s, Café 100 and Mama’s Pizza will deliver to you.

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One of the goals of Crafty Beer Guys is to educate the public about beer and wine through these classes:

– Guided Beer Tasting – Tuesday nights from 6-8 p.m., sample five beers, $3

– Guided Wine Tasting – Wednesday nights from 6-8 p.m., sample four wines, $5

– Beginner Brewing – second Saturday of every month, three-hour class, $15.

They were out of Blue Mountain the last time I went, so my husband will find Silent Night from Mother Earth Brewing in his stocking this year.

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Photos: Vanessa Infanzon

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