CHARLOTTE – Alexis Dickie has been to 547 breweries around the globe, but when she comes home to Charlotte, Resident Culture Brewing Company in Plaza Midwood is always her first stop.
Because she works remotely, Dickie is able to travel frequently. Before visiting a new place, she uses Google Maps to find breweries around the area. She said her friends and family constantly asked her for suggestions, so she decided to turn her passion for travel and beer into a blog and Instagram page, Adventures and Ales.
One year later, her page has more than 6,000 craft beer-loving followers. Dickie gives her travel, brewery and beer recommendations.
Her favorites countries she has been to are Costa Rica, Portugal and Australia. Her favorite brewery she’s visited is Other Half in New York City. But in Charlotte, she swears by Resident Culture.
“I love the plants, I love the lights, I love that it’s always a little loud, it’s dog-friendly, there are food trucks outside and those are all things that I love,” Dickie said. “The people that work here are cool and everyone is so nice, even if they’re slammed. And the beers are amazing. My favorite style is a juicy IPA and they have the best ones here.”
Chris Tropeano is the head brewer at Resident Culture. He said since the brewery opened two years ago, it has embraced the “funky” Plaza Midwood vibe through its interior design, beers, artwork and overall feel of the brewery.
He said the name Resident Culture has a double meaning. First, it symbolizes the local culture of the residents in the neighborhood. But it also nods to the local yeast used in the beer, which is unique to the brewery.
Tropeano said Resident Culture is known for its hazy IPAs and lagers. He said their unique beer separates them from other breweries in the area. Over the summer, Resident Culture held a lager fest, where he and his team brought in breweries from around the country to showcase their lagers, which is something that not many breweries have done.
While he enjoys making beer, Tropeano is his harshest critic.
“It can be a challenge enjoying the fruits of my labor because I’m always looking for the flaws,” Tropeano said. “But it is pretty rewarding to see people come in and enjoying your product and really liking it. It’s nice to have that direct feedback.”
Another one of his favorite parts of being in the beer industry is getting to meet others in the community.
“I think the industry is filled with a lot of really great people and that’s kind of why I got into the industry in the first place,” Tropeano said. “It’s fun to go to events and make new friends.”
Tropeano said cultivating relationships with others in the beer industry is equally as important to him as making good beer. He hopes in the future, Resident Culture can distribute more beer and add more locations. He also wants to focus on improving the brewery’s new pop-up location in Uptown Charlotte.
Dickie recommends those visiting Charlotte and interested in the brewery scene to visit Resident Culture first. From there, she said to make a plan to tackle which breweries they want to visit.
“It can be overwhelming since there are so many [breweries],” Dickie said. “Obviously, come to Resident first. Everyone is super nice that works at breweries and there are some really good beers in Charlotte and a lot of awards are won here and things like that, so there’s a lot of really good options.”
When it comes to getting into the beer scene, Dickie’s biggest piece of advice is to try as many beers as possible. She said many breweries will allow you to taste the beer before purchasing it, but ordering a flight of beer is also a good way for people to see what they like.
“There’s nothing worse than ordering a 16-ounce pour of something and you’re like, ‘I hate this,’” Dickie said.
Dickie said the beer community has been very supportive on social media. While some beer influencers who care a lot about their numbers, hashtags and algorithms, she is more interested in just posting photos of her beers and writing travel guides on her blog.
Though some have told her the brewery scene in Charlotte and around the country will plateau eventually, she only sees it growing. She hopes to help more people in the future and continue giving her insights on her passion.
“I like to travel, I like to drink beer and I like to help people learn more about those things,” Dickie said. “That’s why I started my website and Instagram, so I hope it continues to grow. I’m just always excited to get to try new breweries and try new beers.”
Want to learn more?
Resident Culture Brewing Company is located at 2101 Central Ave., Charlotte. Call 704-333-1862 or visit www.residentculture brewing.com for details.