Looking Back (and Forward) for Port City’s 5th Anniversary

  2 years ago     1708 Views     Comments Off on Looking Back (and Forward) for Port City’s 5th Anniversary  

This past week, Port City celebrated its 5th anniversary with the release of its Colossal V, complete with a two-day party which spilled out of its tasting room, biergarten, and (newly completed) lounge into an Oktoberfest-style tent hall affixed to the loading dock.  The milestone and the new beer are significant for Port City not just as an occasion to test our livers with a big Old Ale, but also because the brewery seemingly finds itself at a crossroads; after all, if you were Port City, how do you follow up your game-changing win as the 2015 GABF Small Brewing…

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Friday Night Flights: Caboose Brewing Co. (Vienna, VA)

  3 years ago     1410 Views     Comments Off on Friday Night Flights: Caboose Brewing Co. (Vienna, VA)  

So there I'm sitting at a nearby establishment gathering pictures and quotes for another feature.  Then my wife, who is somewhere in the "smile and nod" phase of my VBR authorship, sends me a link with a simple, "have you heard of this?" attached.  I mean, I'm sitting in Vienna and get informed that a new brewery/gastropub has coincidentally opened just days before, and only two blocks away?  Does she really expect that I'll just saunter home at that point, give her a hug and a peck on the cheek, and whisper thanks?  I was halfway out the door before…

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We Went There: Old 690 Brewing Co. (Hillsboro, VA)

  3 years ago     1812 Views     Comments Off on We Went There: Old 690 Brewing Co. (Hillsboro, VA)  

What does a dreary Saturday + VBR crew reunion + a set of New Beer Resolutions equal?  An excuse to visit some new breweries!  After spending some quality time with the Ashburn scene the last few months, we decided to trek out to the Leesburg/Purcellville area for a couple of stops.  Given the presence of a libertarian/anarchist in our midst, our first stop was, of course, to a farm brewery which had to challenge local zoning regulations just to stay in business.  That's right, when Old 690 opened in August 2014, they were slapped with a citation which put them…

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Road Trip Report: STL (St. Louis, MO)

  3 years ago     759 Views     Comments Off on Road Trip Report: STL (St. Louis, MO)  

Although we're focused on VA beer, that doesn't mean our day jobs don't send us on business trips, our friends don't schedule destination weddings, or we exclusively make use of the "staycation" principle.  For my own job, I've spent the equivalent of a week in St. Louis over two different trips recently, and before the first jaunt a co-worker who lives out there was extolling the breadth of STL brewing to which my only thought was, "wait, they have more than Schlafly and Budweiser?"  I then made it my mission to get around to as many of the breweries as…

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We Went There: Quattro Goomba’s Brewery, Aldie, VA – @QuattroGoombas

  3 years ago     1871 Views     1 Comment  

During a wine run this weekend, our timelines got messed faster than a perm on a muggy day.  With a standing invitation to join some friends at one winery, and the need to pick up a wine shipment at another vineyard about 15 miles apart, we decided to forego a tasting at the pick-up and head straight to meet our friends.  Our destination was a winery called Quattro Goomba's which we'd never heard of before - not surprising given most of our wine comes from the Delaplane and Purcellville areas.  Imagine my genuine surprise, however, to see a handwritten sign…

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A first look at @PortCityBrew Anniversary Week

  3 years ago     1348 Views     3 Comments  

Wow.  Four years already?  Port City has certainly had plenty to celebrate, and many of their legions of fans turned out last night for the first of many events for their anniversary week.  We shamelessly sacrificed our evening to check out the festivities, which included a release of COLOSSAL IV, their new Belgian Quad. Although the release party was going on late into the night, I was in there moments after the pineapple graced the outdoor sign.  Go figure, it's 3:02 and I'm already clinging to the last seat!  By 3:15 the tasting room hit standing room capacity, though thankfully…

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Brewpub: Mad Fox Brewing Company (Falls Church, VA) – @MadFoxBrewing

  4 years ago     1487 Views     1 Comment  

Back in 2011 my then fiancée and I were living in an apartment in Ballston, a neighborhood of Arlington, VA.  We could walk to everything, and I had the unfortunate choice between a 20 minute bus ride or a 5 minute drive to work.  In trying to convince her to move to a place where we could, you know, afford more than a closet when we decided to buy a home coinciding with the wedding, we had to negotiate a few things.  She cared about "walkability," Metro, and other European eccentricities, to which the only part I shared was the…

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We Went There: Three Notch’d and Champion, Charlottesville, VA – @ThreeNotchdBeer @championbeer

  4 years ago     1201 Views     Comments Off on We Went There: Three Notch’d and Champion, Charlottesville, VA – @ThreeNotchdBeer @championbeer  

Ever try to jot down some tasting notes when you're on your 15th beer?  No, not 15th pint.  This isn't Poland, and we're driving.  Even with 2- or 4-oz. tasting glasses, after a while the beer appears to meld together a little bit.  For the last home game of the season, another night game, we all met in Charlottesville to make a round of the breweries.  As the supposed DD, it was my job to watch the others make fools of themselves and not go crazy on the tastings.  Little did I know... We Went There:  Three Notch'd Brewing Company,…

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BW: Smartmouth Brewing Company (Norfolk, VA)

  4 years ago     1875 Views     1 Comment  

"What's your beer say about you" It was supposed to be a simple trip down to Norfolk. A few friends and a recently married couple decided to head to the mall to return some wedding gifts. Understanding that process, I went because (1) I know how much of a pain it was, (2) the groom wanted an exit strategy for when (3) the bride wanted to continue shopping. When we got there, it was the bride who wanted to head over to Smartmouth and the groom who was looking at new espresso machines before my buddy and I pulled him away from that…

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We Went There: C’Ville-ian Brewing Company, Charlottesville, VA – @CvilleBrewCo

  4 years ago     1439 Views     1 Comment  

It can be hard to issue a review of a brewery for several different reasons.  If the brewer doesn't rely on a steady stream of staples, or has recently changed, then you don't really have a baseline point in time to compare your experience to that of anyone reading the review.  A great example of that is a place like Mad Fox in Falls Church, which although I get there quite frequently almost always has at least half of the menu changed (both for food and drink).  There are 3-4 staples, to be sure, but your experience there in the…

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