Northeast Times

Get Ready to Pour! Philly Beer Week Returns!

[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:Word­Doc­u­ment> <w:View>Nor­mal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:Punc­tu­ationKern­ing /> <w:Val­id­ateAgain­st­S­chem­as /> <w:Sa­veI­fXM­LIn­val­id>false</w:Sa­veI­fXM­LIn­val­id> <w:Ig­nore­Mixed­Con­tent>false</w:Ig­nore­Mixed­Con­tent> <w:Al­waysShow­Place­hold­er­Text>false</w:Al­waysShow­Place­hold­er­Text> <w:Com­pat­ib­il­ity> <w:Break­WrappedTables /> <w:Snap­ToGridIn­Cell /> <w:Wrap­Tex­t­With­Punct /> <w:UseAsi­an­Break­Rules /> <w:Dont­GrowAutofit /> </w:Com­pat­ib­il­ity> <w:Browser­Level>Mi­crosoftIn­t­er­ne­t­Explorer4</w:Browser­Level> </w:Word­Doc­u­ment> </xml><![en­dif][if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:Lat­ent­Styles De­fLocked­State="false" Lat­ent­StyleCount="156"> </w:Lat­ent­Styles> </xml><![en­dif][if !mso]> <span class="mceIte­mOb­ject" classid="clsid:38481807-CA0E-42D2-BF39-B33AF135C­C4D" id=ieooui> </span> <mce:style><!st1\:*{be­ha­vi­or:url(#ieooui) } [en­dif] [if gte mso 10]> <mce:style><!/* Style Defin­i­tions */ table.MsoN­or­malT­able {mso-style-name:"Table Nor­mal"; mso-tstyle-row­band-size:0; mso-tstyle-col­band-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-par­ent:""; mso-pad­ding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-mar­gin:0in; mso-para-mar­gin-bot­tom:.0001pt; mso-pa­gin­a­tion:wid­ow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-fam­ily:"Times New Ro­man"; mso-an­si-lan­guage:#0400; mso-fareast-lan­guage:#0400; mso-bidi-lan­guage:#0400;} [en­dif]

Phil­adelphia has been called the best beer-drink­ing city in Amer­ica and, this week, the city will cel­eb­rate the title — call it the City of Brew-therly love? — with the re­turn of the an­nu­al Philly Beer Week events.

More than a week’s worth of cel­eb­ra­tions ded­ic­ated to the li­quid am­bro­sia that gave Brew­erytown its name are set to be­gin on Fri­day, June 3, and last un­til Sunday, June 12.

This year, more than 185 busi­nesses, in­clud­ing bars and res­taur­ants throughout the city, will host events dur­ing Beer Week.

But, the most activ­ity might be saved for the loc­al brew­er­ies who, throughout the week, will be at­tend­ing fir­kin tap­ings, beer and food pair­ings and “meet the brew­er” events, in ad­di­tion to host­ing vari­ous spe­cial events.

“It’s really drain­ing,” said Nancy Bar­ton, who owns East Kens­ing­ton’s Phil­adelphia Brew­ing Co. with her hus­band, Bill.

“But, it’s great for the city as a whole,” she con­tin­ued. “It sheds a great light on the city.”

The city’s two com­mer­cial brew­er­ies — Phil­adelphia Brew­ing Co. and Yard’s Brew­ing Co., loc­ated on Delaware Av­en­ue — will be par­ti­cip­at­ing in this week’s events in a big way.

For a com­pany like PBC, which reg­u­larly sup­ports com­munity events — neigh­bor­hood meet­ings are of­ten held at the brew­ery and they par­ti­cip­ated in the re­cent Kens­ing­ton Kin­et­ic Sculp­ture Derby with the space­ship styl­ized “Fer­men­ter­prise” — Beer Week can be a lot of ex­tra work.

“We say every week is Beer Week,” said Bar­ton, point­ing to the many com­munity events the brew­ery sup­ports.

Yet, she said, the week really al­lows loc­al busi­nesses to work with the brew­ery to cre­ate unique, new events to at­tract the audi­ence that des­cends on the city dur­ing Beer Week, now in its fourth year.

“This week makes people think cre­at­ively for pro­mo­tions,” said Bar­ton.

For ex­ample, as well as the typ­ic­al “meet the brew­er” events that brew­ers from PBC plan to at­tend, Bar­ton said they de­cided to spice it up a little with a “meet the drivers” event, to be held from 5 to 8 p.m. on June 8 at Old City’s Phil­adelphia Bar and Res­taur­ant at 120 Mar­ket St.

“That should be fun,” said Bar­ton. “Any­one can brew beer, but try hav­ing to lug kegs up and down stairs and in­to base­ments. That’s a real tough job.”

The next day, PBC will host a Gong Show-style tal­ent com­pet­i­tion at Stand­ard Tap, 2nd and Pop­lar streets in North­ern Liber­ties, from 7:30 to 10 p.m.

Also, if you want to see brew­ers from vari­ous brew­er­ies shak­ing what their momma gave them, head to the Grey Lodge Pub, 6235 Frank­ford Ave., in the North­east, for “Grey Lodge goes Bol­ly­wood.”

It’s an event where they will be “put­ting the In­di­an in In­dia Pale Ales,” said Bar­ton, not­ing there will be dan­cing and In­di­an-style mu­sic.

The Grey Lodge will also host a “Dead Pres­id­ents” event with North­ern Liber­ties’ Yards Brew­ing Com­pany, with act­ors dressed as pres­id­ents and a se­lec­tion of Yards’ Ales of the Re­volu­tion, beers rep­lic­at­ing those the Found­ing Fath­ers would have im­bibed.

This will be held from 8 to 10 p.m. on Sat­urday, June 4.

Steve Mash­ing­ton, op­er­a­tions man­ager for Yards, said they’re scal­ing back cel­eb­ra­tions this year, but only slightly.

There’s no “Smoke’em if You Got ‘Em” smoked beer fest­iv­al this Beer Week, for ex­ample. In­stead, they’ll fo­cus more on sup­port­ing events at area es­tab­lish­ments and sav­ing events held at the brew­ery for an­oth­er time.

“We just didn’t want to take away from those oth­er events,” he said.

With that in mind, Yards will be nearly every­where dur­ing Beer Week, with plans to at­tend a kick-off party, held just be­fore Beer Week, on Thursday, June 2 at the Iron Ab­bey at 680 N. Ea­st­on Road in Hor­sham, from 7 to 2 a.m.

As a brew­er in a city with such a beer ped­i­gree, Mash­ing­ton said he is proud of Phil­adelphia’s no­tori­ety as a beer-drink­ing urb­an cen­ter and, while it puts pres­sure on the Phil­adelphia-based brew­er­ies to per­form, it’s a pres­sure he’s happy to con­front.

“There’s a lot of pres­sure, but it’s good pres­sure,” he said. “We have a very know­ledge­able [cus­tom­er] base … If our beer isn’t up to snuff, our cus­tom­ers will no­tice that.”

Also this year, Yards will be of­fer­ing some spe­cial brews for thirsty Beer Week pat­rons. The first will be a brew that comes from the win­ners of a homebrew con­test the brew­ery held this year.

It’s called “CB4” for the two homebrew­ers’ first names, Craig and Brad, and the fact that they used four kinds of hops in the Bel­gian Pale Ale, said Mash­ing­ton.

Yards also partnered with a num­ber of oth­er brew­er­ies, in­clud­ing Tröegs, Stoudt’s, Vic­tory and Cen­ter City-based Nod­ding Head to cre­ate a la­ger, “Broth­erly Suds 2.”

“We used the Schmidts’ [Brew­ery] la­ger yeast from right here,” said Mash­ing­ton about the beer, adding that the brew­er­ies were able to ob­tain the same la­ger yeast the his­tor­ic 2nd Street com­pany used be­fore it was shuttered.

Both of these lim­ited brews will be avail­able at spe­cial events throughout Beer Week, said Mash­ing­ton.

Done with Beer Week or need an es­cape from the crowd?

In Port Rich­mond, at 2253 East Clear­field St., the new Port Rich­mond Pour House will of­fer what own­er John Boswell is call­ing “Beer Week Re­lief.”

Any­one who comes in and men­tions Beer Week will get a dis­count on the bar’s wide vari­ety of craft beers.

Loc­ated in the rough and tumble sec­tion of Port Rich­mond west of Ara­mingo Av­en­ue, the bar is unique for that sec­tion of the city. But Boswell, a former bar­tender at the re­cently closed Swift Half Pub in North­ern Liber­ties, said there is an audi­ence for good craft beers in the area.

“I wanted there to be a place over here where I could take my fam­ily,” said the fath­er of a tod­dler. “There’s a lot more people in this neigh­bor­hood that like good beer than people give the neigh­bor­hood cred­it for.” 

The es­tab­lish­ment — which still sits un­der the Corner Spot sign for the bar that used to oc­cupy that space, though Boswell said that would soon change — has been a pub since the early 1900s. With such a his­tory, Boswell said he is ex­cited to re­turn the busi­ness to a thriv­ing loc­a­tion like had been in its hey­day.

But, when he took over the spot in Feb­ru­ary, it was far from his­tor­ic­ally ap­peal­ing, he said.

It was like a scene from Sev­en in here,” he joked, not­ing the Brad Pitt thrill­er movie. “But I’ve been gradu­ally grow­ing the place … This is like my base­ment bar and it’s been great.”

Spe­cific­ally, Boswell said, like Beer Week, he’s hop­ing to sup­port loc­al brew­er­ies and, with a few ex­cep­tions, the Port Rich­mond Pour House serves loc­ally pro­duced or Amer­ic­an beers.

“It’s beer made by friends and fam­ily,” he said of the Yards and Phil­adelphia Brew­ing Co. beers that he of­fers at the pub. “That’s the kind of thing you want to sup­port.”

For a full list­ing of Philly Beer Week events, vis­it www.philly­beer­week.com.

Re­port­er Hay­den Mit­man can be reached at 215-354-3124 or hmit­man@bsmphilly.com 

You can reach at hmitman@bsmphilly.com.

comments powered by Disqus