Nightlife review: Kros Strain has range of good brews in a comfy, cool taproom

By Ashley Strehle Hartman/World-Herald Correspondent
Published in the Omaha World-Herald, March 22, 2018

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Kros Strain Brewing Company

Where: 10411 Portal Rd #102, La Vista

Hours: 3 to 10 p.m., Tuesday to Thursday; 3 to 11 p.m., Friday; noon to 11 p.m., Saturday; noon to 8 p.m., Sunday; closed Monday

Info: 402-779-7990 or krosstrainbrewing.com

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I’ve been to my fair share of breweries. Or, to be honest, more than my fair share. Either for work or for fun, I’ve visited nearly every brewery in the Omaha metro. Kros Strain Brewing in La Vista is a brewery I’d gladly visit again — just for fun.

Kros Strain (pronounced cross strain) has more than a dozen beers on offer in its taproom. The brews range from hearty, dark beers to floral-inspired lagers.

Since I wanted to sample several Kros Strain brews, I got a $10 beer flight, which comes with the brewery’s three regular beers and two beers of your choice.

The three regulars are Helles Creek, a German-style lager; Dark Paradise, an amber ale; and Fairy Nectar, an India Pale Ale (IPA).

Helles Creek is named for Hell Creek, which meets Papio Creek near the brewery. At 4.8 percent alcohol by volume (ABV), Helles Creek is a refreshing, lighter beer.

Dark Paradise, has hints of chocolate and coffee; Kros Strain compares it to a roasted English-style Mild Ale. At 4.3 percent ABV, it’s an easy-drinker.

The Fairy Nectar has notes of grapefruit and mango and is less bitter than many IPAs I’ve tried. I’m not usually a fan of IPAs, but I’d drink Fairy Nectar again.

The two beers I chose to add to my flight were the Dark Paradise Project (Ugandan Coffee) and Kalkye, a Belgian rye blonde ale.

True to its name, the Dark Paradise Project (Ugandan Coffee) is the Dark Paradise brew with Ugandan coffee beans added. It has a deep, dark color and definite coffee flavor. I’d recommend it. The Kalkye, at 5.5 percent ABV, is a lighter drink, perfect for spring.

Other highlights on Kros Strain’s beer list include the Hibiscus Helles Lager, the Fairy Nectar London Project (Tropical) and Schattenbiest.

The Hibiscus Helles Lager combines Helles Lager with hibiscus flowers to make a pink and tart brew. Kros Strain’s Fairy Nectar London Project (Tropical) infuses flaked and toasted coconut into the brewery’s Fairy Nectar beer to give it a tropical twist. The Schattenbiest is a Schwarzbier — a dark lager traditionally brewed in Germany.

Whatever your brew of choice, Kros Strain likely has something on its menu for you. I recommend getting a flight so you can try a few while you kick back in Kros Strain’s comfy, cool taproom.

Like many breweries, Kros Strain has brushed, concrete floors and exposed ductwork in ceilings featuring funky light fixtures. Kros Strain takes décor to another level with light fixtures that look like hops and a colorful, abstract mural along one wall.

The brewery has lots of seating at low and high-top tables and about a dozen seats along the bar. It’s spacious and airy with plenty of room to settle in for a long stay. Its low-key, low-volume background music makes it an ideal place for small group conversations and laid-back evenings.

Kros Strain has a few televisions and it sells snacks like nuts, but entertainment and munchies aren’t really the focus here. The beer is. Grab a flight at Kros Strain and see for yourself.