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The Answer Brewpub is opening near the Vietnamese restaurant Mekong.
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The Answer Brewpub features 36 taps. (Photo courtesy The Answer Brewpub)
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The menu includes Vietnamese snacks and sandwiches.
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"Chief beer officer" An Bui welcomes guests to The Answer Brewpub.
Last night, The Answer Brewpub held a media soft opening, and I stopped by to check it out. Located in the same strip shopping center as Mekong, the Vietnamese restaurant that’s quickly become almost everyone’s favorite beer bar in Richmond, The Answer is “chief beer officer” An Bui’s new spot for serving his own creations, 36 taps from other breweries, and a menu of Vietnamese snacks and sandwiches. It officially opens on Tuesday.
Anyone who’s ever crowded into Mekong on $5 beer Mondays will be pleased to know The Answer is huge. One large live-edge wood bar features the 36 guest taps along with flat-screen TVs that show the beer list. There are plenty of tables and chairs, and even a stage where I hope to see the Mekong Xpress rocking soon. A second room features a smaller bar where Answer creations will be served, once all of the equipment arrives and the magic starts to happen — Bui says he’s hoping by the end of this year or early next year.
Right now, the menu features Vietnamese sandwiches and snacks, including French fries, Vietnamese tamales, steamed bao and bánh mìs made with a variety of meat options. Bui says once the restaurant gets up and going, he’s going to focus on making the bánh mì bread in-house, so the sandwich will be stepped up another level.
While I was there, I sipped on Street Cred — a Triple Crossing and The Answer Brewpub collaboration — a double IPA that was citusy, hoppy and dry. I also snagged a glass of Ardent Craft Ales Grand Cru, an extremely limited release sour beer that was light, just the right amount of sour, and a tad apple-y. It was the talk of the night, as no one has tried it before and no one knows if they’ll get to taste it again — I have a feeling special releases like this are what will keep The Answer packed on a regular basis.