This review is written by Breweries In PA contributor Ali Miller (@PGHBeerGirl on Instagram)
Take the exit toward Sharpsburg from the notoriously frustrating Route 28, and you will often find yourself sitting in a line of traffic. “What could possibly be leading to this much traffic on Main Street in Sharpsburg?” many Pittsburghers may be asking themselves. Dancing Gnome brewery is the answer! As a devoted fan to the Pittsburgh craft beer scene, it’s hard to recall a time when people have been as excited about a brewery as they are about Dancing Gnome.
Oh, you want juicy, hazy beer? Mostly everyone does, and that is Dancing Gnome’s specialty. On any given day that you visit the brewery, you’ll have the extremely hard task of deciding which fluffy juice to try first. Dancing Gnome produces many varieties of hop forward beers, and they really never produce a “bad” beer. The semi-famous Infinite Highway, Better One or Two, and the beloved Lustra are just the beginning of their list of stellar beers. I first visited Dancing Gnome a couple of months after they had opened, and have been back on an almost weekly basis ever since to try new beers, and to revisit old favorites.
Beyond the delicious beer that they produce, the brewery itself is worth the visit. Their taproom invites you in with its clean, minimalist design, with some rustic and industrial touches. The cans, glassware and merchandise all reflect this simple style, which is not so commonplace among the can art many other breweries are producing these days. If you’re looking for food to go along with your beer, there is almost always a delicious food truck right outside of the brewery.
Getting your hands on the portable versions of these beers is pretty easy, provided that you’re willing to attend can releases. About once per week, if not more, Dancing Gnome has announced can releases that you can find on their website for several weeks out. However, when there is a new beer coming on tap, they often have semi-unannounced can releases. For both of these, you’ll find lines of people from around the Pittsburgh area and beyond trying to get their hands on the coveted white cans with splashes of color. But don’t worry, you can usually get your hands on these cans for a couple of hours after the release time.
In late September 2017, Dancing Gnome celebrated their first anniversary. Yes, all this hype, all of these accomplishments and they have only been open for the past year. As soon as I got home, I cracked open their anniversary double IPA, Nobody’s Robot. I would have always said that Infinite Highway was my favorite beer from them, but now, I think that I have a new favorite. If this is what this brewery can accomplish in one year, I can’t wait to see what else is coming!