New tap room specializes in uniquely flavored craft beer

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Nocatee Town Center continues to grow with the addition of Really Good Beer Stop, a craft beer tap room at 295 Pine Lakes Drive, suites C3 and C4.

The business, which opened Aug. 20, follows the success of the first Really Good Beer Stop, which opened five years ago in Jacksonville Beach.

Owners Angie and Tim Brack envision it as a place where people can stop in with their laptops and have a pint as they wind down at the end of the day. It’s a place where patrons might meet for business or just spend a relaxing evening with friends.

And while those things might also be said of a traditional bar, the ambience here is quite different. The large windows permit sunlight to fill the space. The interior decor is bright and cheerful. The bar itself is really more of a counter.

Indeed, the Bracks compare it to a coffee shop — one that serves beer rather than coffee.

But the real attraction here is ever-changing selection of craft beers, each one unique.

“We pride ourselves on a lot of great beers that are not in other locations,” said Angie Brack.

On a wall over the 20 taps is a menu board showing which beers are available at any given time. The selections constantly rotate; each time one comes off the board, it is replaced by another. Patrons will make new discoveries every time they visit.

“There are so many great craft beers that we want people to try and experience as many as possible,” Brack said.

In fact, since opening their first tap room, the Bracks have served thousands of different beers.

Really Good Beer Stop serves pilsners and lagers, but much more. There are New England IPAs, which have a juicier flavor, and sours brewed in styles that were nearly lost to history — styles like gose and Berliner weisse. There are seasonal beers, and one-time brews that are gone once they are sold out.

Resident beer expert Riley McKelvie compared the production of craft beers to the period before Prohibition when every town had three or four breweries in it.

For much of the 20th century, however, the selection was limited to that of larger manufacturers, but in recent years there has been a growing interest in craft beers.

“I think for a long time, people just got sick of the classic American adjunct lager,” said McKelvie. “They were looking for something else with a bit more flavor.”

Each selection on tap at Really Good Beer Stop is listed with its percentage of alcohol, and in a commitment to responsible consumption those with more alcohol are served in smaller glasses.

The onset of COVID-19 has posed challenges to the tap room, as it has for every other business.

Because bars have been ordered closed, the Bracks decided to serve some food, which allowed them to open under a restaurant license. In addition, they are partnering with nearby restaurants.

“We’ll have like a night where we focus on M Shack, and people can order on their app and we’ll run and get it for them,” Angie Brack said, adding that patrons are welcome to bring their food into the tap room, as well.

The business also offers pick-up service and 32-oz. crowlers — tap beer canned on sight for portability. There’s also a large selection of canned and bottled craft beers for purchase.

Really Good Beer Stop in Nocatee is open noon to 10 p.m. Monday-Wednesday, noon to 11 p.m. Thursday and noon to midnight Friday and Saturday. Patrons can find the current selection of craft beers on the Untappd app.

A grand opening is scheduled for Labor Day weekend.

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