Sunset Grille & Tap Room by Stowe Beer

Battle of the Heads at Sunset Grille

This is a guest post written by the team at — a site focused on craft beer news and reviews in the Stowe area.


Stopped into Sunset Grille in Stowe, Vermont with some erstwhile friends on a recent evening. The baseball play-offs were on (and the Yankees were losing!), and I was in search of the legendary Hammerhead of Cottage Club Road. As we settled into bar seats, I scanned the chalkboard for the current offerings … and there she was … Sunset Grille Hammerhead Ale (5% ABV). Hammerhead is actually produced by Long Trail Brewery in Bridgewater Corners, Vermont and is offered as the unique house brew for the Sunset. So I ordered a pint. Hammerhead Ale has a darkish tint, an amber glow about it, and it is very bitter. I found it did not have much of an aftertaste … the hoppy bitterness just hammered on and on.

For my next pint, I needed to make a switch, and this time I went with the Fiddlehead IPA (6.2% ABV). Fiddlehead Brewery is in Shelburne, Vermont. Fiddlehead IPA has the same great hoppy bitterness of the Hammerhead, and yet it finished with a citrus flourish for an aftertaste. My palette was in heaven! Fiddlehead 1, Hammerhead 0.

We also enjoyed some eats: Sunset is your classic sports bar in a Vermont setting, with wings, burgers, and bbq. While you warm up with some chicken wings (bones or bone-less, many sauces, many degrees of heat), you can catch up on the sports day with the flatscreens in every direction. Sunset’s burgers are great, and you can get pulled pork as well, served in just about every manner. That night, I played smallball for dinner and simply went with the loaded chili cheese potato skins.

And while the Red Sox had already lost, the Yankees too were losing … so we had that going for us.

The Cicerone says: if you need to put out the fire of Lil’ Abner’s wings, the Hammerhead will do the job nicely.