Behind the intensely detailed gothic and metal artwork wrapping the cans of Adroit Theory Brewing’s releases you’ll find an operation that came from humble beginnings, with an off the grid approach that’s taken the East Coast beer scene by storm.
Founded by Mark and Nina Osborne, this Purcellville, Virginia based brewery officially opened their doors in January of 2014 after a few years of planning and brewing up some unique ideas. Originally slated to be called AntiThesis Brewing, until finding a wine out west with a similar name, they instead opted for Adroit Theory Brewing. Initially hiring brewer Greg Skotzko as their head brewer, they worked on a diverse array of initial batches on their 1 barrel system, creating over 37 different beers within those first 6 months.
The original driving force of this new brewery was two fold: use the “vineyard method” by hosting tastings, creating a membership club, and sell beer to people directly from their taproom; focus on concept beers that are unique, thought provoking, and constantly different – no flagships. Over the first few years, almost every beer they brewed was over 7% in ABV, with most in the 7 to 11% range.
Since the beginning, Adroit Theory has brewed both in-house and contract brewed at other locations. In-house brews mostly consist of their high ABV (13%+), low ABV (4-5%, sometimes denoted as AntiThesis), and adjunct/fruited beers. All their other beers are contract brewed in Vint Hill, VA, Washington D.C., and in Orlando, FL. With the brewery now operating their own 10 bbl brewhouse onsite with increased capacity, creating about 4-5 brews a month, plus multiple contract locations, they’ve increased production recently, brewing roughly 3,000 bbls last year.
Today, their Purcellville taproom operates 16-24 draft taps and offers anywhere from 10 to 20 bottles and cans for on or off-site consumption. Their taproom currently lists 34 different options available, according to Untappd. Since their inception, Adroit Theory has created over 1,000 unique beers (archived and new), each denoted with a “Ghost” number. While an astounding variety of options make up their historic list of creations, the brewery is best known for their Hazy IPAs, Fruited Sours, Pastry Stouts, and Barrel Aging Projects.
We at Day One are excited to have worked with Adroit Theory Brewing for a year now, having brought in a total of 67 unique beers from them, about once every 2-3 months. This time around we’ve received the most diverse assortment yet of 14 different beers, all in cans, which are detailed below. They just started arriving at bottle shops and taprooms throughout Oregon earlier this week, though each is in limited supply, so chase those ghosts so soon as you can!
- AK [Genesis Warrior Edition] (Ghost 1004) ~ New England Triple IPA ~ Bright citrus notes of Mandarin and Lime are complimented by traces of Pine and Spice, carried on a creamy, semi-sweet body with mild booziness. DDH with Citra, El Dorado, Motueka, Taiheke, and Styrian Wolf ~ 10%.
- Black Metal (Ghost 968) ~ Altbier ~ Crisp, malt forward, and deceptively light bodied with a dark amber hue and ester notes of red stone fruit ~ 4.9%.
- Black Scauldron [Blackberry + Blueberry + Mango + Raspberry] (Ghost 1026) ~ Fruited Sour ~ This iteration is packed to the brim with Blackberries and Blueberries while Mangoes and Raspberries support with added sweetness and pucker. All of the over-the-top fruitiness of Illusion of Safety, with a higher ABV! ~ 6.5%.
- Chasing Visions Of Our Future (Ghost 1022) ~ New England Triple IPA ~ Chasing Visions’ pillowy, semi-sweet body is complimented perfectly by intense forward notes of ripe Clementine and Grapefruit and a mesmerizing aroma of tropical fruits, with mild finishing bitterness ~ 10.1%.
- Cold Woods (Ghost 1011) ~ English Style Barleywine ~ Full, semi-sweet, and chewy body with a sticky texture offering malt driven notes of honey, toffee, and stone fruit with just enough bitterness for balance ~ 13%.
- Confessions (Ghost 999) ~ Russian Imperial Stout ~ Stylistically similar to All That I Have Learned and Demons Surround Me. This BIG Russian Imperial Stout packs a punch at 16.5%, with just enough malty sweetness to conceal the booziness while also contrasting bold roasted notes of coffee and dark chocolate ~ 16.5%.
- Death Metal (Ghost 969) ~ Wheatwine ~ Death Metal features a full, semi-sweet body with notes of caramel, honey, and slight biscuit. Moderate booziness on the finish reminds you that you’re drinking an 11% brew without overwhelming your palate ~ 11.1%.
- Heaving Through Corrupted Lungs (Ghost 1012) ~ New England Double IPA ~ Opaque orange, semi-sweet malt body with pillowy texture and minimal bitterness enveloped in forward notes of freshly peeled oranges and limes with slight pine and floral finishing notes ~ 8%.
- Immersion (Ghost 1024) ~ Pilsner ~ Crystal clear, brilliant golden and effervescent body offering notes of honey interlaced with subtle biscuit and modest bitterness for an intensely satisfying, crisp finish ~ 5.2%.
- Oh Bother (Ghost 1025) ~ Dry Hopped Pale Ale ~ This devilish dry hopped pale ale balances a light, pale golden malt body with assertive bitterness and a classic hop profile – bright citrus notes of orange and pith intermingle with robust, resinous pine for a classic drinking experience ~ 6.3%.
- Operation Warfare [Sedition] (Ghost 1007) ~ New England Double IPA ~ Pillowy body and bright forward notes of Orange, Grapefruit, and Pineapple with slight Spice and Pine on the finish. Bitterness is minimal – just enough to balance the semi-sweet malt body ~ 8%.
- Ossuary (Ghost 1010) ~ Russian Imperial Stout ~ Ossuary is a bold, roasty stout full of rich notes of toffee and freshly roasted coffee from start to finish – full bodied, jet black in color, with modest bitterness and alcoholic warmth on the finish ~ 12%.
- Thrash Metal (Ghost 970) ~ Helles Lager ~ Crisp, clean, and refreshing, with slight biscuit notes from decoction. Clear, pale golden body with a pillowy head ~ 4.8%.
- We Interrupt This Program (Ghost 1013) ~ New England Double IPA ~ Creamy, semi-sweet malt body with mild finishing bitterness complimented by forward hop notes of juicy Clementine, lemon zest, and red fruit ~ 8%.
Content for this article sourced from Adroit Theory Brewing, Loudoun Times-Mirror, Visit Loudoun, Huffington Post, and The Perfect Purée.