Wednesday, August 31, 2011

TWSF goes brewery hopping.

Well, we finally took a vacation. That’s right, a whole week to relax run around and enjoy some of our favorite east coast cities. After the exciting DC Homebrewers’ Association competition, we were on a craft beer kick. Luckily, our stops included Philadelphia and Boston, areas populated with many homebrewers and small craft breweries.

First Stop: Yards Brewery
Philadelphia, PA

Yards began as a hobby in 1988 with two college buddies and became an award winning beer producer by 1995. It has moved between several locations in the city of brotherly love, and it currently located in the Northern Liberties neighborhood, only a short cab ride from downtown.

Our beer loving friends and Philadelphian locals, Eric and Alex, joined us on our adventure to Yards for some Sunday afternoon brews. We were unable to tour the facility (note: tours are not offered on Sundays), but were able to sample flights of four beers for only $5. The "tasting" part of the brewery is setup like a bar, so we committed to pints of our favorite beers and enjoyed some friendly competition at the free pool table.

Second Stop: Samuel Adam's Brewery
Boston, MA

Sam Adam's brewery was built long after the idea was conceived. Jim Koch, the founder of Sam Adam's beer used a recipe from his great-great grandfather's collection dating back to the 1870s. Once convinced that his beer was in demand, Koch built the Samuel Adam's Brewery in 1988 in the Jamaica Plains neighborhood just a few T stops from the heart of Boston.

We participated in the FREE one hour tour/tasting on a lovely Thursday afternoon. After learning a bit about the history of the brewery and the act of brewery (Chuck's note: they should offer an 'advanced' tour) we were seated in a large tasting room where we were poured 3 fresh 7 oz beers, including Sam’s Coffee Stout which is only available in the brewery (this is where you should be very jealous). Oh, and you get to take home the FREE tasting glass.

The party didn’t quite end after the tour - we hopped on the FREE trolley to Doyle’s, the first bar to serve Sam Adam’s beers on tap. Not only were we able to try a few more beers, but we also each scored the brewery's high-tech lager glasses (note: Although you can save yourself the incredibly fun trip to Doyle's and buy a pint glass at the brewery’s gift shop, it is a bit more expensive and the glass comes empty. I think the choice is obvious.).

A very good beer we were fortunate to try with our fried seafood platter. Yes, those are floating blueberries.
The Atlantic Brewing Company's Bar Harbor Blueberry Ale

Yards Brewery on Urbanspoon

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