Last weekend was awesome — so awesome that it may ultimately prove to be the best weekend of 2013.
Super Bowl Sunday was epic, with the Ravens winning their second Super Bowl in dramatic fashion. But Saturday was epic too, because it featured a three-hour tour of three DC breweries, which I’ll lay out over my next three blog posts.
Fellow craft beer fan Monroe made a great call in suggesting this Saturday afternoon outing. With empty growlers in hand, we launched from Kensington just before noon.
First stop: Chocolate City Beer (CCB)
Where it’s located: 10 miles deep into Northeast DC from Kensington — 2801 8th Street NE, Washington, D.C. 20017
Tasting Room and Growler Fill Hours: Saturday from 12:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Beers on Tap:
- Cornerstone Copper Ale, a well-balanced Copper Ale made with German malts and European noble hops. Very smooth and drinkable. I filled a Growler with this one. According to CCB, this is “An ale we can build upon.”
- Cerveza Nacional de la Capital, this dark, smooth, and roasty Vienna Lager “is a salute to our Latin American neighbors and their influences on the American beer world.”
- Mr. Mayor, an oak-aged imperial stout brewed with marionberries then aged for seven months in whiskey barrels. A nod to former DC mayor Marion Barry. Monroe bought a bomber of Mr. Mayor, but I took a pass. It was rich and strong at 11.5% ABV, and the sample was enough for me.
The Scene: CCB is located in an old small brick warehouse, and the vibe is friendly, relaxed, and low-key. It felt like a cozy “hole-in-the-wall.” There was a steady stream of customers coming in and out of the open doors, but no one was really hanging out for long because it was freezing – it was actually as cold inside the brewery as it was outside because the doors to the warehouse were wide open. The food truck and patio tables out front would have to wait for another visit. The three beer samples were drank quickly and the growlers were efficiently filled. We didn’t linger, which worked in our favor.
As we were leaving, a large group of cyclists was riding up — they had to be 50 strong. It was a strange sight for a chilly day. I didn’t know it at the time, but CCB is right off of the Metropolitan Branch Trail, an 8-mile trail that runs from Silver Spring, Maryland to Union Station in DC.
Because I only had a small window for leisure time on Saturday, we had planned on visiting just two breweries. But we were in and out of CCB so quickly that we decided to add DC Brau to our beer tour.
Next Stop: DC Brau, 3 miles or 10 minutes from Chocolate City.
More pics in the gallery below!
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