A glassblower opened a bottle shop in Haymarket and it’s where to find some of the best and rarest beers made nationally.
Steven Kihl is a glassblower by trade and a beer geek by choice. He combined his passions by opening a glass blowing studio inside his bottle shop, which features his patented glass wine aerator , as well as other drink-related gear: shot glasses, stemware and a keepsake ornament with a slot made for fitting prized corks.
There’s no mass-market beer—it’d be in competition with his neighbor Evergreen’s Pizza & Deli—with Crafted instead specializing in cult annual releases (Founders Brewing Company KBS, an imperial stout aged in bourbon barrels or Bell’s Brewery Hopslam Ale, a double IPA) and local favorites (Dulles-based Ocelot Brewing Company on draft). Kihl runs the type of shop where he fields calls from beer traders looking for specific bottles, including the limited edition Maine Beer Company Lunch IPA, Prairie Artisan Ales Bomb! imperial stout and Perennial Artisan Ales Abraxas, an imperial stout with flavors of Mexican mole. On tap this month find Evil Twin Brewing Imperial Mexican Biscotti Cake Break and Epic Brewing Company Double Barrel Big Bad Baptist Imperial Stout and (if it lasts from November) Epic’s Baptista, a spin on the Baptist inspired by Mexican coffee.
Where the beer selection leans to the hobbyist, wine reveals a more straightforward selection. Kihl stocks the varietals best known in each region, such as California cabernet and Chilean malbec. About a quarter of the wines are from Virginia, like 50 West Vineyards, Sunset Hills Vineyard, Pearmund Cellars, 8 Chains North Winery, Fabbioli Cellars and Narmada Winery.
While there are no snacks, Crafted does sell cigars. And if you happen to drive by this tiny shop along Route 15, there’s a gentle reminder, in the form a huge billboard, of what to do: “Turn around … you just missed us!”