A Night Out With Kristen and Mark

Jack was once again out of town, so I went out with Kristen and Mark! Good thing I did because they took me to some new places!

Frist we went to Penn Social where I was not disappointed. They have a large chalkboard up with their beer offerings on tap. On the far right hand side of the chalkboard they have “Specialty Beers” with 10oz pours. Of course I got a specialty beer.

I started the night off with the Blue Point Sour Cherry by Blue Point Brewing Company of Patchogue, NY at 9.2% abv.

I ordered this beer not knowing what to expect, I asked the bartender if it was a lambic to try get any information on it, but the bartender didn’t even know what a lambic was. fail. But on the plus side, when I got the beer I was completely surprised! It turned out to be an Imperial Stout! With a name like that I would have never guessed!

Anyway, quite a beer. Thick and smooth, very light on the cherry but the sour and tartness shows through a bit more. Chocolate that mixes well with the hints of cherry. Roasted malts, coffee and dry finish. Wow, I would certainly order that again!

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Later when we moved on to another bar for dinner, Mark, Kristen and I all split the Allagash Curieux by Allagash Brewing Company of Portland, Maine at 11% abv.

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You can never go wrong with this beer. It’s a bourbon barrel aged triple and packs quite a punch. Not only in alcohol content but in taste!

Not overwhelming, but very delicate notes of citrus and honey, an earthy vanilla, mouthwatering, not at all dry. Oh yes, and bourbon! This makes a great bottle to split, it was the perfect amount to split three ways!

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After dinner, we went to yet another bar, called Iron Horse. I really liked the décor in this bar! There were old school motorcycles everywhere! And they had a pretty good beer menu!

I scanned over the beer menu and my eye immediately caught the Petrus Oude Bruin, which I attempted to order. The bartender took a look at me and tried to warn me away from it and asked if I’ve had it before. I actually get this a lot. And I’m not offended by it, in fact, I take it as a somewhat of a compliment. Its always fun seeing the look of realization that crosses their face that I also know my beer. Anyway, the keg had just kicked and needed to be replaced but was not going to happen any time soon. Even though they were packed the bartender, who really knew his beer, took his time to point out a few good beers on the menu and even give me samples!

I sampled and ordered the DuClaw 31, a Munich Dunkel Lager, by DuClaw Brewing Company of Bel Air, MD at 5.1% abv.

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If you know me, you know that German style beers and lagers are usually not my thing. Well this was awesome! It poured nice and dark, and tasted exactly like a tootsie roll! It wasn’t particularly thick and creamy, maybe a little allspice? Dark bread and caramel. Like drinking a tootsie roll. The unusual taste was very cool. I would certainly get this again just to make sure I’m not wrong about the taste, and if I’m not its worth getting again.

World of Beer

On a random weekend night with nothing planned, Jack and I decided to check out World of Beer in Arlington.

It was an odd atmosphere. Maybe just because we went on a Friday night, but it was more like a sports bar than a beer bar. Loud music, packed, lots of TVs. But we managed to get a small table to ourselves.

It took us a while to order, because the first three beers that Jack chose were out of stock. Bummer.

In the mean time I ordered the Sea Dog Riverdriver Hazelnut Porter by Sea Dog Brewing Company of Bangor, Maine at 5.6% abv.

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I think this is the first hazelnut porter I’ve found, most of them are browns.

Almost a slight bitterness with all the roasted malts. Also, chocolate, hazelnut, caramel, coffee. Creamy mouthfeel, slightly smoky and dry finish. Not bad, not overwhelming.

I think they atmosphere was starting to get to us, so I got one more beer and Jack took a few sips too. Since we were kind of splitting the beer, we decided to get the Kasteel Cuvee du Chateau  from Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck since its high alcohol content is almost too much for me alone at 11% abv.

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So, so tasty. This beer is so smooth, almost no carbonation. Brown sugar, caramel, honey, figs and plums, spicy yeast. Decadent, it took me back to Belgium. I can honestly say I will never forget having this beer at the brewery.

And then we headed home since there wasn’t much more of a reason to stay there. Too crowded and just not the right vibe for a good beer joint.

Liz’s Horse Show and Corn Maze

Late October, we drove up to Goucher College in Maryland to see Liz’s horse show!

I was pretty excited because I know Liz is awesome at riding horses and I’ve also never been to a horse show! I felt so preppy!

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It was pretty cool, I tried to pay attention and watch all the riders, I felt that I learned something about a new sport!

It was interesting to watch all the riders and try to figure out who was good and who was bad. Sometimes it was obvious, and some of the things they judge are so subtle.

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Liz rocked it!

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In fact, she won first place! Told ya she was good!

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Anyway, during the horse show I was looking up bars in the area trying to find something with a good selection. Not so much. I did find a bar that looked promising. It had 20 beers on tap. I figured that out of twenty beers, they might have something decent. At least a Dogfish Head? No. They had, I kid you not, five types of Bud, and multiple types or Miller and Michelob.

Obviously I do not look impressed. This was some kind of cider. Possibly Woodchuck? It was on draft so I didn’t get a bottle to photo, and promptly forgot.  Anyway, it was fall and went with the theme of the day.

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Then we headed further into Maryland and went to an amazing corn maze!

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And picked our own pumpkins!

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Quite a good fall day. Minus the poor beer choices.

A Weekend at the New River Gorge, WV

Apparently I didn’t take any pictures of us climbing, but I did manage to take a few of the beers I drank. Its beginning to get a little odd when I look back at the pictures of my life and all I see is beer. Not that that’s a bad thing I suppose!

Of course after a hard day of climbing we went to Pies and Pints! We got there slightly before the big dinner rush, so we were able to get seats right away!

They have pretty good beers in their beer cooler but the menu is never updated. After walking up and checking out their cooler, I decided on the Rochefort 8 by Brasserie de Rochefort at 9.2% abv.

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I cant not order this beer when I see it! Its just so good!

Moderate to high carbonation and a medium/ thin body, tons of tiny little bubbles. Goes down easy with a slight tingle from the carbonation. Heavy on the fruits and yeast. Caramel and almost herbal. The alcohol is very well hidden. Although you can tell its in there by the time you finish the beer!

And next I had the Ayinger Celebrator of Aying, Germany at 6.7% abv.

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I hate to say it, but there’s not many German beers that I like. This is one of the few that I love.

Pours dark, with a slight ruby hint to it. Roasted malt, mild smokiness, toasted bread, nutty. This is one of the best dopplebocks I’ve had. I’m not gonna lie, I also love the label and the little goat tag that comes with it!

Finally Checked out Westover Market

I had been meaning to check out Westover Market Beer Garden forever! It’s actually a little grocery store that also sells really good beers. In the back, they opened a small beer room and outdoor beer garden. They also have a small menu and decent sandwiches.

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A couple of taps inside, maybe 10? But they also had entirely different taps outside in the garden.

I started out with the Dark Hollow by Blue Mountain Barrel House of Afton, VA at 10% abv.

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This was an intense beer. It was a bourbon barrel aged imperial stout. Roasted malts, charred wood, vanilla and of course bourbon! Very little carbonation, smooth and heavy, light coffee flavors, semi sweet chocolate. An amazing sipper. I would definitely have this again if I see it available.

Next I went with an old favorite, the Maredsous 8 of Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat of Breendonk-Puurs, Belgium at 8% abv.

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This beer took me right back to Belgium. Completely enjoyable. Dark fruits, like plums, figs, raisins. Molasses and the very typical Belgian funk yeastiness. Toffee and brown sugar, very smooth on the palate.

I wish there had been room for us to sit outside, especially with the live band playing, but chilling at the inside bar was a fantastic time too!

My Birthday!

Way back in September, we celebrated my 29th birthday!

We started off the night going to Cirque du Soleil. We picked an early evening show so that we would be able to meet everyone for drinks at a reasonable time. I love cirque, its so mesmerizing and entertaining.

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After the show, we came back to Clarendon and went to my favorite bar, Galaxy Hut! The vibe here is so funky and eclectic.

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Quite a few people made it out to celebrate with me! Thanks ladies!

And an extra special thank you to Liz! She made me cupcakes with beer reduction icing! (Holy shit!) It was out of this world! She made it with an oatmeal stout and it was perfect with the vanilla cupcakes! I need to learn how to make it!

And following tradition, I got a massive corn dog. My secret guilty pleasure!

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Of course beers were had. I tried the Schlafly Porter by the St Lewis Brewery in St Louis, MO at 5.4% abv.

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Not too bad, not stellar, but a good basic porter. Roasted malts, hints of dark chocolate, slightly bitter, full to medium mouthfeel. Very drinkable, I think I had two, but I cant quite remember!

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Thanks to everyone who made it out! I had a fantastic night!

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This picture just screams trouble! 😉

Catch up

Where do I even begin? It’s December and I still have posts to catch up on from September. At this point, I’ll review pictures and notes, but I’m sure some beer info has been lost. I’ll do my best.

Back in September, Jack and I went down to Williamsburg for my last triathlon of the season, the Patriot’s Sprint Tri. My parents also met us there and we had a nice day or two at the beach before the tri. While in the ocean, I was jumping with the waves and came down with a wave and landed on a dead horseshoe crab. Those things are spiky! I tore up the bottom of one of my feet which was not ideal for the tri. During the tri I had to run across a beach, a field, and the transition area all barefoot. I also bike and run (only during sprint triathlons) without socks to save time, but my foot was not happy by the time I was done.

Although, we did go out for beers at The Green Leafe and beers made me feel much better!

Pouring over their beer menu, it looked like they offered a lot of beers but my first two requests were out of stock.

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I think I finally went with something on draught. Unfortunately without a bottle to include in the picture, I have no way of remembering what I got. Bummer.

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Not a bad bar, if I were in the area again, I would try to go back! And that was also the last of the triathlons of the year!