Sweet Potato Blonde Ale

You shall not choose but drink before you go;
I think I shall command your welcome here,
And by all likelihood some cheer is toward.
--Vincentio, Taming of the Shrew, William Shakespeare
Water, pure water, the noblest gift that man to man may bring;
But, who am I to have the best of anything?
Let princes revel at the pump, let peers with ponds make free,
For Sweet Potato imbued in beer is good enough for me.
--Er, um, Mostly Charles, Lord Neaves

Vick’s Choice is a blonde ale brewed with Wilson County sweet potatoes grown by Vick’s Family Farms. Each batch requires one hundred and twenty pounds of the vegetable which are chopped, steamed, and pureed through a partnership with Barton College.

The versatile sweet potato adds flavor, body, and balance to this gently hopped, unfiltered blonde ale. Master Brewer, John Kater, explains this brew is not intended to ‘club you over the head with sweet potato flavor.” Instead, it is designed as an undertone that will pair well with just about any food.

Vick’s Farm co-owner Jerome Vick, for whom the brew was named, says the beer’s flexibility mirrors that of the sweet potatoes. “It is a very nutritious,” he said. “Sweet potatoes are one of the few things that you can eat that is good for you and good to you, too.”

Mr. Vick went on to explain that the soil in the central coastal plain is ideal for growing this root vegetable. More than 1,000 acres at Vick’s are devoted to the crop helping North Carolina to lead sweet potato production not only in the country, but in the world.

The rich flavor and texture of Vick’s Choice complement food, spicy foods particularly; from barbecue to biryani to burritos. We hope you will try one today; the beer’s unfiltered but the choice is clear.

“The humble tipple known as beer
is good enough for me." -Lord Neaves

Quotes gathered by Brie Handgraaf of The Wilson Times in her article about the genesis of the ale “Local crops, brewers at heart of sweet potato ale" used with permission of the author. You should subscribe!

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The top crops in Wilson County are tobacco, cotton and sweet potatoes. When formulating an approachable beer that showcases Wilson agriculture, the choice was obvious.

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