Stars and Bars: Happy Hour Hike @ DC Breweries

3-Stars3 Stars Brewing Company tasting flight

Beer. Let’s get some local suds.

Last year, we did an evening DC brewery hike heading north from Fort Totten Metro Station and ending in Silver Spring.

With expanded hours for many of the DC breweries and the new Right Proper Production House in Brookland, we now tried a hike heading south from Takoma Metro Station.

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Around Town: Hellbender’s One Year Anniversary Party, 11/14/15

Hellbender

 

Congrats to Hellbender Brewing Company on a great first year!

They are celebrating one year in DC this Saturday, November 14th. Come out to the party!

Admission price gets you unlimited pours of 23 beers (12 Hellbender brews and 11 other local brews) and a souvenir glass.

There will also be music, DJs, games and a BBQ truck.

 

Hellbender’s One Year Anniversary Party
Hellbender Brewing Company
Saturday, November 14
2:00-6:00pm (VIP 1:00-6:00pm)
$45 (VIP $60)
21+

Stars and Bars: New Beers from Hellbender, 3 Stars @ SAVOR Week

DASCHA
Dascha Beer Garden (and Liz Taylor) under an overcast sky Wednesday

Wednesday evening was overcast and cool. It was perfectly comfortable to be outside with a light jacket but it was certainly cooler than DC would expect for the first week of June.

What a great opportunity, then, to drink an appropriately medium-bodied beer with a light touch like the Hellbender Brewing Co.’s new Ella Kölsch Pale Ale. Ella is definitely more pale than kölsch, with a dense but pleasing color and a bite of refreshing bitterness upfront but with that clean kölsch finish.

Hellbender debuted the beer during happy hour Wednesday at Dascha Beer Garden (1600 7th St. NW, DC), timed in conjunction with Savor Week — the days leading up to the Savor American Craft Beer and Food Experience at the American Building Museum (401 F St. NW, DC) on June 5-6.

Hellbender Brewing Co. (5788 2nd St. NE, DC) quite likes the kölsch pale ale, or KPA, style, and it has been experimenting with it a bit this year, previously releasing an Equinox KPA. According to Hellbender, “This new hybrid German/American style combines the traditional American pale ale recipe with German Kölsch yeast. The end result is a dry, refreshing pale ale with big hop flavor and aroma!”

The Hellbender KPA series will consist of beers built around various hops, subject to seasons and availability, the brewery said. The Ella hops is from Australia, and it imparts the beer with spices and flowers along with an aroma of tropical fruit. The Ella KPA weighs in at 5.7% ABV, 37 IBU, 6 SRM.

HellbenderEllaKPA
A look at if not a taste of the new Hellbender Ella KPA

Ella wasn’t the only new beer to debut from a local brewer this week.

3 Stars Brewing Co. (6400 Chillum Pl. NW, DC) extended its collaboration series with Pizzeria Paradiso (3282 M St. NW, DC) to introduce Monday a new entry in its nine-part Paradiso series. The debut occurred at the Pizzeria Paradiso Monday Night Beer Club, which offers beer specials usually along a theme on the first Monday of every month.

ParadisoSun
Paradiso: Sun sits atop the menu that tells you all about it.

The new beer, Paradiso: Sun, is a rustic farmhouse ale brewed with cedar tips. At 5.1% ABV, Paradiso: Sun was quite drinkable, and its woody flavor paired quite well with pizza! (Imagine that.) As always at Monday Night Beer Club, the knowledgeable Rob Fink, Paradiso assistant bar manager (and District Chophouse assistant brewer!), was manning the bar to pour the special and provides insights into their origins.

The entire collaboration series draws inspiration from Dante’s Paradiso. The first beer in the series was Paradiso: The Moon, a pale wheat saison brewed with sour oranges. The second was Paradiso: Mercury, a red wheat rye saison brewed with blood oranges. And the third was Paradiso: Venus, a blend of the first two beers aged in Sangiovese barrels.

All in all, Hellbender, 3 Stars and Paradiso brought fine new beers to a great week of events!

PizzaBeer
Pizza and beer? Por favor!

Excursion: Happy Hour Brewery Hike

Hellbender Brewing Company
Hellbender Brewing Company

It’s Thursday, your workday is almost over, you’re bored with the normal happy hour spots, and you want to get some exercise but don’t feel like going to the gym.

Consider something completely different.

Why not check out some of your local breweries on foot?

Skip the car and the bikes. Strap on your walking shoes and visit Hellbender, 3 Stars and Denizens all in a few hours.

Since DC breweries can now sell full pints and beer flights in the evenings (expanding from the traditional growler hours they operated on the weekends), many have opened their doors for a few hours on Thursday and Friday evenings.

Most are located in the Northeast quadrant, and are not easily accessible without a car. Easy fix. Walk. Besides, drinking and driving is never a good idea…

Here is one hike you can consider, completed successfully on April 9, 2015.

What: Happy Hour Brewery Hike
Days to try: Thursday or Friday evening
Breweries to visit: 3
Distance: 4.1 miles
Time walking: 1 hour 30 minutes

Itinerary:
Start: Fort Totten Metro (between 5:00 and 6:00pm)
1st Brewery: Hellbender Brewing Company (Hours: TH/FRI 4:00-8:00pm)
2nd Brewery: 3 Stars Brewing Company (Hours: TH/FRI 4:00-8:00pm)
3rd Brewery: Denizens Brewing Company (Hours: TH/FRI 4:00-11:00pm)
Depart: Silver Springs Metro

 

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Stars and Bars: DC Embraces Hellbender Brewing Co.

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Glen’s Garden Market (2001 S St NW, DC) today began offering Red Line Ale from the Hellbender Brewing Co. (5788 2nd St NE, DC).

Named after the popular transit line of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, the Red Line Ale has been quickly popping up around town in places that I’ve visited like Pizzeria Paradiso and Maddy’s Bar and Grille, generally distinguishing itself as a very quaffable and visible offering from the newest DC brewery. (You can visit the brewery’s website for a full list of where Hellbender beers are currently on tap.)

I paid a visit recently to Hellbender Brewing, which barely sits within the District line in a quiet office park not too far from the Fort Totten Metro Station. The brewery is clean, new and pleasant, and its tasting room is large although it feels a bit like a campground cafeteria or a snack bar on a suburban college campus somewhere.

When I was there last week, Hellbender was offering three of its beers — Red Line Ale, EFT IPA and Grampus Smoked Nut Brown. All three of them were pretty darn good, and this is coming from a fellow who doesn’t enjoy too many brown ales.

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