Craft Beer in Naples, Florida

You never know where you’ll find good beer. This was exactly what I was saying while I sat at Citrus, a restaurant on upscale 5th Avenue in Naples, Florida with my wife and her grandparents. It was at Citrus, where we were introduced to Paula Powell [proprietor], Jay [Paula’s devoted husband], and Dave Koch [sommelier extraordinaire and Canadian import]. During dinner, I enjoyed a Cigar City Maduro Brown Ale [Tampa, FL] to go with my blackened fish tacos and finished with a Belgian Palm Ale. Dave asked more questions about what I thought of the beer than what I thought of the food. The guy loves the food at Citrus, but also appreciates a fellow beer lover. Just in case I didn’t say it enough to you already Dave, the Maduro was filled with a ridiculous amount of smooth roasted malts and subtle notes of chocolate. At the end of the night, Dave introduced me to the folks a couple patios over at Avenue Wine Café to see their beer list. After seeing the extensive and impressive list, I promised the bartender I would be back the following day.

We returned to 5th Avenue the next night to go have a few beers with Dave after his shift. We ended up spending the first few hours of our evening talking to Paula, Jay, and Dave about beer, food, culture, Beer Wars [as our website was hosting the Beer Wars party], macro brewers, restaurant strategy when promoting craft beer, the social responsibility of craft brewers, and life in general. We tasted beers from their list like Breckenridge 471 IPA, Breckenridge Vanilla Porter, Palm, and their new arrival, Bischoff. I had the Bischoff Black Lager, which was a delicate balance of mild, yet robust flavors for a Schwarzbier. Afterwards, my wife and I walked a few patios over to Avenue Wine Café with Dave to have a few more beers. I thought it was really cool how Citrus and Avenue share their beer lists with each other to ensure they don’t serve the same beers as each other in an effort to provide a little more diversity to the Naples beer portfolio. My wife and I shared an Avery IPA and Stone Ruination IPA. I told you I was a hop head. We continued to relax and talk with Dave and every nice person he introduced us to throughout the night. It was a good night. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Paula, Jay, Dave, and the community of Naples for welcoming my wife and me with open arms and applaud them for showing us their palate for craft beer. Take care, stay warm, and keep “Living the Craft Beer Lifestyle.”


Miguel Torres: I'm a craft beer fanatic, a homebrewer and President of California Castaway. I love the relaxed, fun-loving craft beer lifestyle and will rave about it to anyone who's willing to listen.

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