Last Updated :30/06/06
Beer in Washington DC - by John Adams.
Below are details of the bars and beers drunk whilst on a ringing weekend to Washington DC at the end of May 2006. Beers outside of the British Isles do not count towards my total, so I was not very meticulous in noting down other beers available. In general, beer came in US pints, i.e. 16 fluid ounces. There doesn't seem to be much concern over getting a full pint, so some measures were to the top of the glass and some were woefully short, especially the real ales where I assume they think a good head is part of the image. Some of the stronger beers were served in "half pint" glasses which usually turned out to be 10oz glasses. In one pub, Old Speckled Hen was available on fizz in an English 20oz pint glass. Beers were on the whole fizzy or pasteurised. Like some of the UK boutique breweries, they could have been real but served cold under pressure, but it is difficult to tell, and I am sure the breweries could tell you if asked. Strength of beer doesn't seem to be an issue. The micro breweries were good at listing the ABVs of beer either on the chalk boards above the bar or else in the menus, along with a full tasting notes for the beers. Bars providing a significant number of beers either on draught or in bottle were rather vague and the only guide to strength was the pricing. Some of the ABVs below have come from websites and may refer to the bottled version which is sometimes stronger. It is difficult to compare pricing with the UK due to a number of factors. There is a local tax to be added to the stated price and this varies from state to state. Then there is a tip to be added once the bill is paid, and although this seems to be about 15%, being a tip, it should vary according to the service provided. It does mean that in general, bar staff are attentive and helpful, hoping for a good tip. Finally, the changing dollar exchange rate was in our favour, but with a rate of 1.90 dollars to the pound, using the formula of a dollar being 50 pence gives a 5% error in calculations. All bars are in Washington DC apart from the Brewers Alley which is in Frederick, MD. We had a day trip to Frederick with lunch there.
Thursday 25th May 2006 WARDMAN PARK MARRIOTT HOTEL, 2660 Woodley Road, NW. Corner of Connecticut and Garfield Avenues. HARRY'S BAR, ground floor bar off Lobby. Our accommodation for the weekend. 1 16oz BASS (Burton UK) Bitter 4.4%? (fizz). 1 16oz SAMUEL ADAMS (Boston MA) Boston Lager 4.9% (fizz).
Friday 26th May 2006 CAPITOL CITY BREWERY, 2 Massachusetts Avenue, NE. Corner of 1st Street. Part of the National Post Office Museum building and opposite Union Station. Beers brewed on the premises in view of the bar. 1 16oz CAPITOL CITY (Washington DC) Prohibition Porter 5.3% (fizz). 1 16oz CAPITOL CITY (Washington DC) Amber Waves 5.1% (fizz). HARRYS RESTAURANT & BAR, 436 11th Street, NW. Corner of F Street. Mainly a restaurant, bar had a few beers on. 4 16oz YUENGLING (Pottsville PA) Traditional Lager 4.4% (fizz). CAPITOL CITY BREWERY, 1100 New York Avenue, NW. Corner of 11th and H streets. Branch of the Capitol City Brewery (others in Arlington VA and Baltimore MD) with beers supplied from the Capitol Hill branch (see above), I assume as there are no signs of a brewery here. 1 16oz CAPITOL CITY (Washington DC) Apricot Wheat 5.0% (fizz). 1 10oz CAPITOL CITY (Washington DC) Fuel 9.0% (fizz). WARDMAN PARK HOTEL, Harry's Bar (see above). 2 16oz SAMUEL ADAMS (Boston MA) Boston Lager 4.9% (fizz).
Saturday 27th May 2006 BREWERS ALLEY RESTAURANT & BREWERY, 124 North Market Street, Frederick, MD. Brew pub with on site brewery visible from bar. One handpump in use selling one of their beers as cask conditioned. 1 16oz BREWERS ALLEY (Frederick MD) Oatmeal Stout 6.0% (fizz). 1 16oz BREWERS ALLEY (Frederick MD) Hefeweizen 5.0% (fizz). 1 10oz BREWERS ALLEY (Frederick MD) New Moon Beer 6.8% (real via handpump). BRICKSKELLER, 1523 22nd Street, NW. On 22nd Street between P and Q Streets (mind your Ps and Qs?). Bar selling the largest selection of beer in the world. 13 beers on draught and about 700 in bottles. Three handpumps in use, Oakham White Dwarf from England available on one, the Winter Bourbon on another, and the third unlabelled. 1 16oz ANHEUSER BUSCH (St Louis, MO) Winter Bourbon 6.0% (real via handpump). CLYDE'S RESTAURANT & BAR, Gallery Place, 707 7th Street, NW. On 7th Street between G and H Streets. Very large restaurant with ground floor bar serving a few draught beers. 1 16oz REDHOOK (Woodinville WA) India Pale Ale 6.0% (fizz). REGIONAL FOOD AND DRINK, 810 7th Street, NW. On 7th Street between H and I Streets. Sister pub to the Brickskeller, serving 30 draught beers and about 250 bottles. One beer is served cask conditioned via handpump. On my visit the cask was in the fridge and I couldn't see an obvious connection to a handpump, but I didn't look too close. Also, they were unable to tell me what the beer was, apart from it came from England! 1 16oz COORS (Golden CO) Blue Moon Belgian White 5.4% (fizz). DISTRICT CHOPHOUSE AND BREWERY, 509 7th Street, NW. On 7th Street between E and F Streets. Large restaurant with bar and on site brewery. About 8 beers brewed, one of which is served cask conditioned by a handpump, located on the bar back and not the counter side. The Bourbon Stout is the Oatmeal Stout aged in bourbon barrels. 1 16oz DISTRICT CHOPHOUSE (Washington DC) Oatmeal Stout 5.9% (fizz). 1 160z DISTRICT CHOPHOUSE (Washington DC) Bourbon Stout 6.1% (real via handpump).
Sunday 28th May 2006 CAFE DELUXE, 3228 Wisconsin Avenue, Cleveland Park, NW. On Wisconsin Avenue by the junction of Woodley Road, just to the north-west of the National Cathedral. Had lunch in here after ringing at the National Cathedral. It is a small chain and practically a replica of the English chain Cafe Rouge. 1 16oz SIERRA NEVADA (Chico CA) Pale Ale 5.6% (fizz). BIRRERIA PARADISO, 3282 M Street, Georgetown, NW. On M Street between Wisconsin Avenue and 33rd Street. M Street is the main shopping street through the centre of Georgetown. The bar is in the basement of an Italtian restaurant and is not signposted. Even going into the restaurant, you can't see any signs to the bar! Have to ask the waitress, and no, it is not the bar in the restaurant on the ground floor. 15 beers on draught and one barrel in the fridge connected to a handpump on the bar, served cask conditioned. 1 10oz BREWERS ART (Baltimore MD) Resurrection 7.0% (real via handpump). 1 10oz LAGUNITAS (Petaluma CA) Double Maximus IPA 7.5% (fizz). 1 10oz SOUTHAMPTON (Southampton NY) Imperial Porter 7.2% (fizz). WARDMAN PARK HOTEL, Harrys Bar (see above). In bar before and after a curry. 4 16oz SAMUEL ADAMS (Boston MA) Boston Lager 4.9% (fizz).
Monday 29th May 2006 DULLES INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT. Our flight home was at 8am, so we were checked in and airside well before 7am, a bit too early to start on the beer. The Dulles information leaflet has a plan of the airside terminals and a number of bars are noted. These are owned by Samuel Adams, Gordon Biersch and Old Dominion. Our flight was from terminal D. The Gordon Biersch bar in terminal D was open and had four beers on. The Samuel Adams bar by the gate at the end was closed but had three beers on. Useful links Bars Birreria Paradiso Brickskeller Cafe Deluxe Clyde's Restaurant & Bar Harry's Restaurant & Bar Regional Food & Drink Breweries Anheuser Busch, St Louis, MO: Brewers Alley, Frederick MD: Brewers Art, Baltimore MD: Capital City, Washington DC: Coors, Golden CO: District Chophouse, Washington DC: Gordon Biersch, various across US: Lagunitas, Petaluma CA: Old Dominion, Ashburn VA: Redhook, Woodinville WA: Samuel Adams, Boston MA: Sierra Nevada, Chico CA: Southampton, Southampton NY: Yeungling, Pottsville PA: