Welcome to the May Edition of Field Trip Friday!
In case you missed last month’s edition, “Field Trip Friday” is a new blog series that is something new and different to the blog that I hope you will enjoy. In these posts, we provide you with local food and beverage reviews in case you are ever in our part of Northern Virginia and want to check them out.
Today’s edition of Field Trip Friday is about our visits to Powers Farm & Brewery, a brewery in Midland, VA, and Black Bear Bistro & Brick Oven, a restaurant in Warrenton, VA.
Before I begin with today’s great places, I just want to say that I’m not being compensated in any way for this post. Field Trip Friday posts are based on a good-faith, honest opinion of some of the places David and I visit. I will admit, the research is fantastic! 😋
Powers Farm & Brewery
Powers Farm & Brewery is located at 9269 Redemption Way, off Meetze Road at the intersection with Casanova Road in Midland (Just outside of Warrenton, Virginia).
This is an integrated sustainable farm, hopyard, and brewery owned by Kevin and Melody Powers. They moved to the area 11 years ago and bought a 21-acre farm in Midland which they raise their own fruits and vegetables, most of which come from organic and heirloom seed stock. The Powers’ grow everything sustainably without chemical fertilizers or pesticides. They also practice companion planting and grow a wide variety of flowers that attract beneficial insects like bees.
As for the brewery, Powers focuses on a variety of styles of brewing beers that use ingredients from their field. The menu is all centered around the growing season. The on-farm ingredients include hops, herbs, fruits, and even vegetables! Many of the different offerings rotate on and off with the end of harvest, are likely to return in some form when the season comes back around.
The beer is made exclusively for their taproom and a few local restaurants. The seasonal lineup constantly changes, and are sold on-site, in pints or growlers. Customers can also sample several beers poured into individual flights.
David and I first discovered Powers Farm & Brewery when his sister Mahaley came up for a visit a couple of years ago. She loves beer and we decided to take her to a couple of the local breweries. I was DD that day because I didn’t even like beer (or so I thought).
David and I decided to return to Powers Farm & Brewery for our second “Field Trip Friday”. On the day of this particular visit, it was cold and there were still traces of snow on the ground. If memory serves me correctly, there were around 10 beers on the menu, so David and I opted for a shared flight.
There is a lot of beer to choose from, making for a full flight if you want to taste them all. If you visit, make sure you have a designated driver or someone with you who doesn’t drink more than they should (for this visit the DD was me).
We chose to get crowlers (smaller than a growler) full of our favorite beer to take home and enjoy.
My favorite beer was called “Mirabelle”. Mirabelle is a Belgian Table Beer brewed with farm-grown ginger and fermented with local golden plums. A nice table beer with gingery flavor and a slightly sweet-tart finish that my sour loving mouth craves.
David can’t seem to remember what he got inside his crowler. That only means one thing… Either it wasn’t good enough to remember, OR the fact he cannot remember means it was really good! I believe it was the latter of the two.
We are overdue for a trip and are keeping our eyes and ears out for a beer Powers makes from HoneySuckles!
For hours of operation and more information about Powers Farm & Brewery, please visit their website at https://powersfarmbrewery.com
Black Bear Bistro & Brick Oven
David’s sister, Mahaley, also gets credit for turning us on to this place too. Yes, that’s right, a lady who doesn’t even live in the area had to tell us all about Black Bear Bistro. She stopped by the bistro on her way to visit us.
Go figure! We lived on Bull Run Mountain for 2 years and we had never even been to Black Bear Bistro. Warrenton was half the distance from our home at that time.
According to Mahaley, we were missing out. She brought us a couple of cardboard coasters from her visit there and raved about how good it was. Needless to say, we had to go check it out!
Chef Todd Eisenhower opened The Black Bear Bistro, located in downtown Warrenton, in 2009. Chef Eisenhauer has worked in restaurants in West Virginia, North Carolina and Virginia. He is a U.S. Army veteran and served two years in Desert Storm.
“I’ve always enjoyed creating new recipes, experimenting, making people happy.” ~ Chef Todd Eisenhower(“Black Bear Bistro’s Tandoori Pork Marinade is ideal for early spring,” 2018)
Black Bear Bistro serves up generous portions of great food using farm fresh local and organic ingredients at very reasonable prices.
Chef Eisenhauer creates a special menu to feature each night. However, I have to be completely honest about our visits to Black Bear Bistro & Brick Oven. The truth is David and I cannot get past the brick oven! Our love for wood-fired pizza is so great that we haven’t explored the menu beyond appetizers, pizzas, and dessert.
We love sitting at the pizza bar (especially in winter) while watching the guys behind the counter toss dough, sling topping and through more logs into the oven. Basically, you watch your pizza being made right in front of you.
Usually, we opt for some type of appetizer. We’ve gotten fried oysters several times and we loved the meatballs. David and I are creatures of habit and we tend to order the same things. However the dishes we see coming out of the wood-fired oven make us drool. The last time we were here, I eyeballed a piping hot order of Wood-Fired Spinach Artichoke Dip coming out of the wood oven. The next time we go, we’re getting me some of that!
Our favorite is the very first specialty pizza listed on the menu called “Giovani”. This wood-fired creation features a spicy sauce, salami, capicola, shredded mozzarella, and peppadews. It’s the pizza we always go for. The funny thing is that David and I didn’t even know what a peppadew was until they topped this pizza.
A Peppadew is the brand name of sweet piquanté peppers grown in South Africa. Its taste is a little bit sweet, a little bit spicy, with a bit of pickled tang. They are also called sweet red cherry peppers.
If you love trying new types of peppers, you’ve gotta try these! Order from Amazon HERE)
No matter what you call the peppers they send this pizza over the top! The smokey flavor of the crust combined with the crispy outside and pillowy inside is the vehicle that drives this spicy meaty pizza into your mouth.
As for dessert, it is always the same… CHOCOLATE MOUSSE! Rich, creamy and velvety smooth, served in a wine glass with chocolate syrup and just enough whipped cream.
Black Bear Bistro also has great beer (including craft beers) wine and cocktail selections to go along with your meal. Plus the service is always great!
Grab a slice of Neapolitan pizza if you go, and don’t skimp out on that mousse!
For hours of operation and more information about Black Bear Bistro & Brick Oven visit their website at https://www.blackbearbistro.com/
That concludes this edition of Field Trip Friday. I hope you enjoyed hearing about the local food and beverages we experienced.
At this time, I would like to say a very special thank you to my sister-in-law, Mahaley, for her recommendations and her food and beer loving spirit. Love ya!
Did you enjoy hearing about the two places we visited? Want to hear about more places we visit on Field Trip Friday? Comment below.
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If you would like to read more, visit last month’s post about B.O.F.T. & Jalisco by clicking HERE.
Black Bear Bistro’s Tandoori Pork Marinade is ideal for early spring. (2018). Retrieved from https://www.fredericksburg.com/archive/black-bear-bistro-s-tandoori-pork-marinade-is-ideal-for/article_236ee265-9ea6-57dc-983d-e0d00c44e4f0.html
Disclaimer: In no way was The Mountain Kitchen, LLC compensated in any way for promotion of these establishments. Field Trip Friday posts are written on good faith, honest opinions. Our opinions are based on our own personal opinion at the time of service.
However, we would gladly accept a deep discount off future purchases… 🤣