Hoppy Couple: The Leaning Cask Brewing Company

The Leaning Cask Brewing Company is located at 850 Pittsburgh Street.

Joe

Location

The Leaning Cask Brewing Company is located a short drive northeast of Pittsburgh in a small riverfront town called Springdale, Pa … on Pittsburgh Street. That’s easy to remember, right? Springdale is minutes from many other fantastic places that The Hoppy Couple has already written about, including Elwood’s Pub, Dancing Gnome Brewery, and Grist House Craft Brewery, to name a few. Interestingly, Springdale is also home to the Rachel Carson Homestead which is a four-room farmhouse and birthplace of local environmentalist, Rachel Carson. You may have heard of her bridge … or crazy-long 35-mile wilderness footrace that only the toughest runners compete in.

Beer

Oh boy, where to start? As their name suggests, Leaning Cask is pretty into cask ales. What is a cask ale? Well, they have some awesome cards on the bar that answer that exact question! The short of it … think of a cask ale like a beer you naturally carbonate in a bottle, except it’s a much bigger bottle. They generally have a new cask ale special every week and it is usually ONLY served as a cask style. When we were there, I had the pleasure of trying their cask at the time called Irish Setter Red. It was cask-conditioned and dry-hopped, as well, so this ale was ultra smooth, kind of like a nitro, and had a nice crisp hoppy bite. The way they pump these cask ales with their industry-leading Angram system is something to see so make sure you grab a seat at the bar.

Atmosphere

Large, spacious, and accommodating is how I would describe the atmosphere at Leaning Cask. A long bar, a private room, table seating, and even some couches are all options when visiting the brewery. We sat at the bar and got to talk to husband-and-wife owners, Josh and Stef, and learn all about their vision, their beer, and why they do what they do. We had a blast chatting with them! All of the staff working there that we interacted with were top notch and really, the time flew by. Already having plans to expand within their building, they have really hit the ground running. Be sure to keep up to date with what new developments are coming!

 

Food

A trend that should be quite obvious if you’ve been heading out to breweries around the city is that the symbiotic brewery/food truck relationship is a sure winner. Leaning Cask has food trucks pretty much from Wednesday through Sunday, every week, and they bring a wide variety of food styles. On the day we were there, Tango, an authentic Argentinian food truck, was parked out front serving some pretty delicious stuff. I tried their fried steak sandwich, the Milanesa Sandwich, topped with some of the best chimichurri sauce I’ve ever had … and I’ve been to Gaucho. Be sure to check out Leaning Cask’s Instagram feed for their food truck schedule each week!

Amanda

Location

Leaning Cask is tucked away in the small downtown area of Springdale, PA. Springdale may be a small town but that just makes Leaning Cask all the more popular of a main attraction. Before becoming the hotspot brewery it is today, the Leaning Cask property, built in 1903, was a local hardware store for years before becoming the popular record store, B & D Records. Springdale is also not far from The Galleria at Pittsburgh Mills, Aspinwall, Sharpsburg, and Millvale.

Beer

Have you ever been to an English pub … in England? Well Leaning Cask owners, Josh and Stef, have been to plenty and have brought the true style and flavor of English ales right back home to Pittsburgh. Josh and Stef brew all of the beer themselves and are not afraid to think ‘outside the box’ and create some experimental brews. They create an incredible variety from nitro stouts to English ciders, from IPAs to olde ales, and of course, their specialty cask ales. Furthermore, each of their special brews is named after a dog breed that originated from the same area that the beer is styled. Their personal favorite pup-named ales are Mosaic Mastiff and Midnight Moo (named after their own dog’s nickname, Moo Moo). Can you say “clever attention to detail” much?! Not only are they pioneering cask ales in our area, but they may be the first local brewery to offer a “Mug Club”. This elite club already has a long waiting list but if you’re lucky enough to get your exclusive mug, you can expect all kinds of top secret goodies.

 

Atmosphere

I truly cannot say enough about Leaning Cask and they’re not even a year old yet! As soon as you walk through their doors, you’re transported to a local English pub surrounded by friends and family. Josh and Stef put their heart into this endeavor and it shows in every detail: the cozy corner couches by the windows; the quirky dog paintings adorning the walls; the handmade chalk signs and hanging mug racks; and even the thoughtful indoor bathroom specially designed for dogs (no, I’m not kidding!…and yes, they have human bathrooms, too!). They have only been open about eight months and they nailed every detail from the start. They already have plans to expand even further into their three story building (maybe even the rooftop!) in the future!

Food

As Joe said, finding food trucks at breweries is quite the awesome trend and Leaning Cask embraces that, as well. They offer food trucks most days they are open and spread the love around by working with different trucks each week to keep it interesting! Some of their truck visitors include Alberta’s (a Hoppy Couple favorite), Pittsburgh Tortas, Franktuary, Billu’s Indian Grill, and Ash & Kris Greek Kitchen … definitely something for everyone! During our visit, we had Argentinian from Tango and my chicken bowl with rice was delicious. Their food is high quality and high flavor so definitely check them out. If you’re not into dining on wheels, House of 1,000 Beers is a few minutes away across the river and worth the quick trip.

Summary

Without really needing to say it, DEFINITELY check out Leaning Cask in Springdale and while you are at, take a short journey to old world London via their awesome English-style ales. It’s obvious the owners and staff put a lot of passion and effort into every part of Leaning Cask … so pay them tribute and go get a pint!

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