I had to go to Philadelphia for a meeting yesterday. It was an easy day-trip from DC to Philly and back because I took Amtrak. Since I hadn’t been to Philly in a few years, I decided to squeeze in a visit to a downtown brewpub – Nodding Head Brewery and Restaurant, which was only a block from where my meeting was held.
My meeting ended at 3:00 p.m. and my train home didn’t leave Philly until 5:00 p.m. – plenty of time to sample some local craft beer. I talked a few work colleagues into having a beer with me, and four of us made the short trek to Nodding Head after the meeting. We arrived to an empty pub – not surprising for a Tuesday afternoon. What we missed in the ambiance of the local crowd was offset by speedy bartender service, since we were the only group in the place.
Nodding Head offers one of the most generous beer flights of any brewpub I’ve visited – a 7.5 oz glass of every beer on draft. Most of the flights I’ve ordered at other brewpubs are served in 4 oz or 5 oz glasses. The flight at Nodding Head was so generously poured that there was plenty to share around the table, and we poured smaller samples into the extra glasses brought over by the bartender.
The beer line-up:
- Ostap (4.0%), a low alcohol session brew
- Doc (4.75%), an easy-drinking and refreshing Golden Ale
- George’s Fault (9.0%), a Belgian-style Golden Ale with hints of coriander and orange, brewed using a substantial amount of honey
- O-Tay (7.0%), a Golden Ale brewed with 84 pounds of organic buckwheat and Belgian yeast; after the beer flight I had a full pint of this one
- BPA (5.0%), a hoppy pale ale; BPA stands for Bill Payer Ale
- Grog (5.25%), a cask-conditioned English-style Brown Ale, a nice dark session brew
- Allagash White (5.0%), this guest draft from Allagash Brewing Company in Portland, ME is an exceptional interpretation of a traditional Belgian wheat beer
I had a train to catch so it was a quick visit, but the brewpub was a great way to relax and unwind after an arduous meeting. We didn’t eat at the pub so on the train ride home I had my traditional Amtrak meal of a hot dog and a beer, and I was traveling in style with a Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA. It’s pretty cool that they serve Dogfish Head on the train!
A day trip and long work meeting in Philadelphia would normally be a real drag. But I can’t complain about a day that included a visit to an out-of-the-way brewpub and a beer from two of my favorite breweries – Allagash and Dogfish Head.