Dinner in Easton, PA

After the brewery tour, we checked into our hotel and took quite a nap! It was glorious. Feeling refreshed, we decided to head out to dinner. We saw in a local paper that a new brewery/ restaurant had opened in town, Two Rivers Brewing Company, so we figured that would be the best place to go.

It was fantastic! They really must have just opened because they didn’t have any of their own beer available yet, they were still renovating and working on their brewery. But they had a bunch of beers from Weyerbacher and Victory.

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I searched through all my pictures and tried to find their beer menu online to no avail. It was a chocolate stout that was fantastic, but I cant remember its name! So disappointing.

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The food was also terrific and cheap! Gotta love eating out away from DC sometimes! I would love to come back and try the beers that they will be brewing! The restaurant and menu are so well done that I imagine their beers would be tasty and exciting as well.

Weyerbacher Brewery Tour!

On a cold weekend in February, we decided to take a road trip up to Weyerbacher Brewery in Easton, PA. About 7:00am on a Saturday we hit the road and three and a half hours later we were in Easton. We had lunch and walked around town for a bit then headed over to the brewery.

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We caught the 12:30 tour and it was free! It was a good thing that we arrived early because we got to get started with samples even before the tour!

The first beer that I tried, which ended up being my favorite one of the day, was the Sour Black at 5% abv. It was delicious! Tart fruit and cherries, moderately effervescent, lively little bubbles, red wine, and mustiness. It was aged in wine barrels.

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The taps. They also had other beers that weren’t on tap that you could sample. Like the Sour Black and their seasonal Seventeen.

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The tour was great, and lasted about 30-40 minutes.

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Lovely stainless steel.

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And then back to the tasting room! It was a little fuller now. There were the people from our tour, people from the next tour, and locals that came in to get their growlers filled. I was jealous!

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The sampling pours were small so I tried everything in their line up two of three times! They probably had around twelve beers to choose from.

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If we lived closer I would definitely go back! The tour was great and their beers are awesome! I also got some nice glassware and a bunch of assorted beers to bring back! Especially the Sour Black!

Mad Fox Brewery

The first time I had been to Mad Fox Brewery out in Falls Church, I loved it. So of course we invited Kristen and Mark to join us for dinner to check it out again.

Kristen and I started off with samplers! I sampled the Schwarzbier, an English Barleywine, and American Barleywine and something else entirely forgettable.  To tell the truth, their beers were terrible. They all tasted almost exactly the same! In fact, I took a sip of Kristen’s IPA and the American Barleywine and other than a slight difference of temperature, they tasted almost identical. When I mentioned that maybe I was served the wrong beer, the waiter brought me a sample of the IPA to try. I don’t really like IPAs anyway, so I fail to see how this helped the situation.

Sorry for such a bad beer review, but I wont be going back. Their beer was unoriginal, tasteless, and boring.  Not to mention, that this is February! There were no porters or stouts on the menu. What a tragedy! But they did have multiple kinds of Kolsch, pale ales, and IPAs on the menu. (Who has multiple kinds of Kolsch on the menu?? And who would want multiple kinds of Kolsch to choose from??)

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We all decided to check out another bar down the street, hoping that they had a decent beer menu to raise our spirits.

We found the Dogwood Tavern! And I got a stout! Success!

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It was a beer I’ve never had before, the Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout by Flying Dog Brewery of Frederick, MD at 5.5% abv.

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We all had a bit of a giggle at the name, but the beer was not bad! Of course you are wondering if it tasted like Oysters? Actually a bit, but only a very little bit. A good stout, robust with roasted malts, semi sweet chocolate, hints of coffee. A slightly salty, shellfish tang to it. A hint of ocean brine. Quite an interesting and different take on stouts. I liked it!

And so the evening was saved from disaster! We called it a night soon after that since we are getting old and have early bed times. But at least I got to try a new beer!

Et Voila!

Saturday was a big day for us! I ran my first 20k! Which turns out to be about 12.4 miles. I ran the whole thing and managed to come in right on my goal time! The last few miles were uphill and I can honestly say that’s when it got much harder, mentally too!

For a little bonus, I planned dinner at Et Volia for us. But not until the evening, my plans for the day consisted of doing nothing and napping!

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While we got started on some mussels, I ordered the Gouden Carolus Classic by Brouwerij Het Anker of Mechelen, Belgium at 8.5% abv.

This is just one of the most perfect Belgian beers to have with dinner. It goes with everything and really is well representative of the style.

Nice lively carbonation, caramel and brown sugar, a slight bite of licorice, figs and plums. Wonderfully warming with the alcohol, and a semi-dry finish. It kept me interested with every sip.

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After a delicious dinner, I got the Kasteel Rouge by Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck of Ingelmunster, Belgium at 8% abv, for dessert!

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This is one of my favorite dessert beers! Its just so over the top with flavor that its almost like drinking juice! Dark and thick with cherry juice! There is a bit of yeasty funk and fresh bread, moderate carbonation. Oh yeah, and that 8% abv kick just to remind you that this is not a soda!

I couldn’t help it! Even with a tasty dessert beer I still went for dessert!

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Meringue floating on custard cream. Heavenly! It went so well with the Kasteel Rouge!

Saturday Night Invite

Emma and I were supposed to have date night, but we just couldn’t resist accepting when Novak invited us over to pregame! Actually we weren’t pre gaming for anything, but some of our friends were getting ready to go out to a big 80s night. So we brought over some pizzas and beers!

I had another Tommyknocker Cocoa Porter, I believe it’s the last one of the six pack.

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I also grabbed one of the De Koninck beers that Dave got for me in my secret santa gift pack!

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First we finished watching the football game, then watched a ton of 80s music videos for everyone to brush up on their 80s dance moves. Hilarity ensued.

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But by far, the best picture of the night is of Rob trying to squeeze in to Kristen’s denim jacket!

Bowling and a Surprise Appearance

Prior to bowling, we all met up and had a few beers to get the night started!

I had the La Fin Du Monde by Unibroue of Quebec, Canada at 9% abv.

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This beer is fantastic! Its technically a triple, but I find it not quite like Belgian triples. Moderate, effervescent carbonation, sweet citrus and grapes, not hoppy. Its not heavy feeling, but a good creamy mouthfeel and quite smooth.

Still had a few more of Cocoa Porter by Tommyknocker Brewery in the fridge that I brought along.

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And then we were off to the lanes! Where I managed to have so much fun and cheap, shitty beer that I forgot to pull out my camera! But I promise we bowled! I even scored over 100 on the first game!

The best part of the night was that Joe and Parrish showed up and surprised us! They both live out of town in southern VA and Michigan, so it was a treat to have them out with us! To make the most of their visit we headed out to the Bilbo Baggins in Old Town after bowling to have a few more beers!

The BB has a decent sized beer list, nice décor, and great food!

I ordered the Liefman’s Goudenband by Brouwerij Liefman’s at 8% abv. Even though I’ve had it before, I had to get it again! Up until now, I’ve only seen this beer offered in the large 750ml bottles which force you to split it with someone. Splitting is not something I mind, but finding someone who wants to split it can be. I believe it was a bottle size larger than a 330ml.

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It’s a Flanders Red Ale, so right off the bat I know that means it will be a sour beer. Lightly acidic, soft notes vinegar, tart cherries, vanilla, and earthy funk. A very well-done beer, complex for the style. Satisfying and dry.

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What a fun night! I’m just so happy we got to see our out of town friends and got a chance to go to the Bilbo Baggins!

New Year’s Eve

A very belated Happy New Year’s!! At least I’m finally on to 2013 posts!!

Look at us being all classy with out plastic champagne flutes!

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We had a small get together for New Year’s, nothing too fancy. We didn’t really feel like going out big so I invited over a bunch of friends who felt the same way!

The one really interesting beer that I had that night was the Tokyo Black Porter by Yo-Ho Brewing Company of Nagano-ken Kitasaga-gun, Japan at 5% abv.

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I had read good reviews of this beer and was excited but skeptical. It seems like Japan has a lot of potential to make good beer, but hasn’t in the past. The Hitachino beers aren’t that bad, in fact I really liked one or two that I tried. But I can honestly say this beer blew me away. It surpassed all my expectations!

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Not only was this a good porter for Japan, but it was a good porter in general! Roasted malts, a nice mix between light sweetness and bitter semi-sweet dark chocolate. Vanilla and a creamy. Very well done. I now have a new favorite Japanese brewery! Now I can begin obsessively to pursue their other beers to try!

And of course I had another (we had quite of few of them in the fridge) Cocoa Porter by Tommynocker Brewery of Idaho Springs, CO at 5.7% abv.

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One of the highlights of the night was getting to taste the awesome cupcakes that Molly brought! They had mint Oreos inside them and vanilla-peppermint icing! I wish I could make them myself! They were gourmet!

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We also got to try some of Andrew’s homebrew! Andrew and Kristen, who recently moved away to Boston, brought some of their homebrew for us to sample! They brought an IPA and a pumpkin ale. Surprisingly smooth and full flavored!

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I hope you have a very good new year! I’m looking forward to continuing to try new beers!