philadelphians, rejoice! beer week is upon us. you may find yourself musing, a bit confusedly, "but isn't every week beer week?" if you partake in regular happy hours, distributor perusals, geek outs with the dudes at hawthorne's, backyard/park bottle top pops, etc. then the short answer is Yes. but capital B Beer Week offers hundreds (almost a thousand, some report) of special events across the city and the region in celebration of suds, the geniuses who craft it, and the nerds who love them. the past few annual Beer Weeks have expired with me consistently feeling like i didn't take advantage of enough of the awesome happenings, and this year i am determined to not let that happen. it's really too bad that i am as yet iPhone-less, because they've even rolled out a beer week app to help keep track of all the madness! seriously. dumb-phone laden as i may be, i won't let this one slip away without sampling at least half my weight in saisons, double IPAs and other such glorious libations.
so, i had to work on friday night, and thus missed the official first day of beer week. however, i did jam a few much needed pints of sixpoint at the abbaye afterward, so maybe that counts for something? last night, post-ballgame, ry and i decided to bike over to fishtown to the 'it's a firkin riot!' event at johnny brendas. the night air was cool enough to require a denim jacket, and the ride across town was just lovely. we rounded girard to frankford ave. to the familiar, fuzzy sight of this fine bar.
inside, our pal herbie was spinning all manner of british tunes, and hoisted above the bar in a purely brilliant set up (whoever built this thing deserves many accolades), was a row of the firkins, tapped and pouring beer like there was no tomorrow. for a quick and painless explanation of what a firkin is - by a badass bearded brewer dude no less - see here. the firkin loft was even outfitted with packs of dry ice (i think) to keep the beers mildly chilled. i can't get over how cool this apparatus was.
the $5, 10 ounce pours allowed for a wide variety of tastes, but i was most impressed by the weyerbacher verboten, a belgian style pale ale with all the crispy, clean, gentle fruity yeasty-ness i could ever ask for. these went down easy peasy. a little too easy...
i also tried the standard pils, a new local collabo beer that was a delightful quaff. as a few sweet friends joined us at the bar, our glasses were emptied and refilled as our tab did grow. herbie kept it solid at the turntables, and the place just got more and more packed out. i hazily realized that one potential down side of these beer week shenanigans is the increased presence of douchey dudes. i almost NEVER get approached by men at bars, but last night i was hit on by not one, but a handful of drunk, drunkie drunk drunk amateurs. i will give a certain red-cheeked young fellow credit for at least using "what beer should i order?" as a pick up line, instead of whatever other hack bullshit the ladies of the world must endure.
the bike ride home was punctuated by a stop at maoz, followed by an impromptu 2am viewing of the film indecent proposal. in a stroke of luck, i don't have to work my usual shift this morning, and so could sleep in, rock some brunch, and prepare for the day's beery activities...long live my liver!