Flying Dog – DogtoberFest

A lot of my beer reviews end up being related to beers that are somewhat hard to find.  One of my favorite aspects of having started this blog is the thrill of the hunt.  I’ll hear that there is some rare or seasonal brew coming out.  Typically I’ll check with my normal stores to see if they have it, but if they don’t, it’s time to hunt it down.  I’ll call stores and have them put it on hold for me if I have to.  Other times it’s just fun to go into new places and see what things they have that I haven’t had.  Going to see family in NJ and PA, I like to try to stop into stores and see what they have available.  Half the fun is in the chase.

I’m not sure this always makes it practical for all of my readers though.  I’ll put up a post, link it to facebook, and typically emphasize the difficulty in finding the brew.  Most normal people aren’t going to put in the effort to find it.  So, for this review, I tried to stick to something I felt will be a little less difficult to find.

Flying Dog is basically a local brewer to this area.  They are out of Fredricksburg, MD, and they brew some really good beers.  I typically tend to overlook their products when I’m in the store.  I try not to buy things I could get at a local bar, but this was one of those create your own six pack situations, and I had never had their Marzen before.

Marzen is the type of beer we typically call Octoberfest in the states.  Although at one time I could count it among my favorite types of beers, I can’t help but feel like my tastes have changed some.  The first marzen I ever had was Sam Adams’s Octoberfest.  I can still remember finding this beer to be amazing; however, as time has gone on, I don’t look forward to it in quite the same way I used to.  Therefore, it was time to look around and see if there were other marzens out there that would help me fall back in love with the beer.

This beer pours out a very rich reddish auburn color.  There really isn’t much haze in the beer itself.  It has fairly good clarity that makes me think it should have some fairly good clean and crisp aspects.  There is a slight white head that develops on the top of the beer.  Although, there really isn’t much there.  Also, swirling the glass brings back a little head, but not too much of it at all.  The swirl also results in a very small amount of lacing.  It is also not all that significant, and it really doesn’t stick around very long.   Although I feel like I haven’t invested myself into too many marzens, or it’s at least been a while, this is pretty typical of the marzen style.

The smell had a very fall feel to it.  There is a very malty bready richness to it.  It definitely smells a little sweet with a sort of light caramel and toffee scent.  Although this isn’t overwhelming, it has that warming effect.  I do pull out something almost like apple as well.  I think this could add to the fall effect.  Apples always remind me of fall.  We always went apple picking in the fall back in the day.  There are definitely a few light hop scents here as well.

The onset of the taste is very clean and malty.  It has a very rich quality without feeling thick.  In the middle I pull out that apple taste.  I think it is almost an apple cinnamon taste, but it may be that caramel quality combining with the rest of the flavors.  Following the apple flavor, there is the definite slight hint of the caramel flavor.  I think the caramel aspect is what brings that richer quality to it as well.  The finish comes quickly through a quick bite of hops .  The hops provide a slight piney floral quality to the end that mix well with the rest of the beer.  The hops do extend into the aftertaste, but aren’t significant enough to have someone thinking that they went overboard.  It just adds to the complexity of the flavor.

The mouthfeel is very well-balanced here.  The carbonation works nicely.  It definitely is an adequate amount.  It seems almost intense at the start; however, it begins to mellow as the taste develops.  So it lingers throughout the whole thing, but doesn’t feel overwhelming.  The hops do linger slightly, which makes it finish slightly like an ipa, but it doesn’t create a bad aftertaste for those who don’t like ipas.

Ultimately, this is a very good marzen.  Having had a few octoberfest brews that are more in keeping with tradition, it isn’t the best, but it is good.  As I said, I was hoping to review something that others could find a little more easily.  Therefore, if you haven’t tried a lot of different types of brews before, take a look at a current seasonal.  Dogtoberfest is a good example of a good marzen to start with.

Teacher Grade: B+

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Discovering Yourself

Do you remember the first band that you found that you could call your own?  I grew up listening to my parents music.  Truthfully, I never really remember thinking it was all that terrible until I began to develop my own tastes.  I can remember my parents playing country music, along with other various forms of music, and never thinking it was terrible. I actually know I sang along.  I knew all of the lyrics because it was always on.  Then, I started listening to some of the stuff I heard on the radio.  I still love a few of those bands, and will buy their albums when they are released.  I feel like I need to support some of these bands that helped me form my roots.

There was one day, however, when my mom took me to the music store,  and I purchased (most likely with my mother’s money) the first cd that would send me in a totally different direction of music.  Walking down the aisles of the store, I looked at all of the typical things I knew to look at.  Then I found this one cd.  The cover art was very different from anything I had seen before.  It actually felt kind of edgy to me.  It was “Teenage Politics” from MxPx.  I had no idea what the music sounded like inside, and I really didn’t care.  Something about the artwork, and perhaps the middle school mindset, was speaking to me.  I think I purchased a few other albums that day, but I can’t remember a single other cd.  None of them left as big an impact on me as this one did.

Heading home, I popped this cd in and took a listen.  I really did not understand what I was hearing.  It wasn’t your typical clean production I was used to.  These guys put out a fast dirty punk rock album that I was truly unaccustomed to.  Of course, as I continued down the road into more diverse punk rock music and beyond, I realized this wasn’t even close to the roots of punk rock, but at that time, it was the edgiest thing I had ever heard.  I remember taking the cd to school and showing it off to all of my friends.  This was also many of their first listens to anything in this genre.  It was the jump start to buying Mxpx apparel, writing the fan club, and buying up every cd that they produced for years.  But ultimately, it started all of us on a journey of finding our own tastes in music.  We looked into any and every band we could find that was like MxPx.  It led us to metal, hardcore, ska, and a plethora of other types of music.  Not all of it was great, in fact a lot of it was terrible, but it was an awesome journey.  Probably one of my favorite times to look back on.

Utilizing my spotify account, I went back and listened to the album as a reminder.  Even now I sing along with the songs.  I won’t tell you it’s the most impressive music I’ve ever listened to.  I found this CD at just the right time in my life, and it created a lasting impact.  I haven’t listened to new MxPx material in years, and I may never go see them again, but that’s not what matters.  Even though it hasn’t made it to my cd player in years, this is definitely one of the most important albums in my collection.

And now I ask you, what album do you cite as the most influential album in your musical history?  It may not be as amazing as “Teenage Politics”, but that’s okay.  What helped you find your own musical identity?

Stone Brewing Company – Japanese Green Tea IPA

Stone is one of those brewing companies that is really hard to ignore.  First they have a great logo that really catches your eye.  Second they brew awesome concoctions and name them things like “Arrogant Bastard Ale”.  Finally, they are always making new things that you just can’t pass up.  Right now I have three different bottles from Stone waiting to be consumed.  These were all special releases that came out in the last month.  A lot of times it takes breweries all year to get out three special releases, but these guys did it in one month.  Two of them came out in my area me in one week.

One of these special release beers is a collaboration with Baird Brewing (Japan) and Ishii Brewing (Guam).  These guys all got together to release this limited edition benefit beer for the Tsunami in Japan.  While it is great to buy beer for a good cause, my second review of a benefit beer this week I might add, there is a very clear reason I was drawn to buying this beer: Green Tea.  Now I’m not really all that big a fan of green tea by itself.  I think I had some for a while in college when I was on the brink of death and couldn’t drink coffee.  However, I am a huge fan of IPA’s, and therefore, couldn’t let this one pass me by.

Doing a little research into the actual green tea situation of this beer, I found that the green tea element is actually part of the dry hopping.  Therefore, for those of you who don’t know, the beer is left to ferment on a bed of the green tea.  The other interesting thing is they also dry hopped it with a new type of hop called Aramis.  Aramis is a new hop coming out of France.  Let’s hope this is amazing!

On the pour, there are a few interesting things going on with the appearance of the beer.  First it pours out extremely hazy.  It has a very nice golden orangish color to it.  There is a slight light head that develops on the pour; however, it really isn’t much to speak of at all.  There is some nice lacing that occurs on the side of the glass; however, it does dissipate very quickly.  I don’t really think there is much sugar present in this one.  As I was about to move into the smell, I picked the glass up to smell and noticed quite a big of sediment in the glass as well.  I know this one has been dry-hopped with the green tea, which I think means a lot of the remnants make it into the bottle.  Looking at the bottle, there is definitely a lot of sediment in the bottom of the bottle as well.

The smells were a little more like what I was expecting an IPA to smell like.  There are some very clear piney hops smells on the nose.  Of course, I wanted to find the scent of green tea somewhere in here; however, I don’t know that green tea really has much of a smell.  You do get a lot more of the floral notes that come through with a high quantity of hops, and you definitely get some citrus smells in there as well.  I really couldn’t find the green tea at all in the nose though.

The taste here starts very clean.  There is definitely a slight citrus flavor that takes over at the start.  It is slightly malty as well.  The piney sharp flavor begins in the middle; however, it is almost pine without hops.  Then, towards the end, the hops come on extremely strong.  They carry very nicely throughout the rest of the taste and really last into the aftertaste.  However, there is one thing that I wanted to find that is once again really hard to find: Green tea.  I kept looking for the green tea throughout the entire tasting, but it is almost invisible the entire time.  I think you do find it slightly in the end and into the after taste, but I really might just be reaching in the hopes of finding it.

The mouthfeel really is very nice and well-balanced for an IPA.  I feel like it has the perfect amount of carbonation.  The blend of the all the flavors work really well together.  There is nothing that hits the taste buds and throws you off.  The hops do linger for quite a while, but I think this is a good sign for an IPA.  If you didn’t want a slightly bitter flavor into the aftertaste, then you wouldn’t be drinking an IPA.  Once again, I don’t know how much you can get a green tea flavor into an IPA, but I really wish I could identify it better.

Overall, this is a great IPA.  It does everything that you want an IPA to do.  However, I feel almost tricked by the name.  The green tea is really hard to find in it.  Of course, it’s hard to be mad at a brewer who tries to do something interesting for the sake of funding a good cause.  Perhaps the green tea might have shown up more in a different style of brew, but in my opinion, it just get swallowed up in all the hops.  If you want to give some money to a good cause, then you should buy this beer.  However, if you’re buying it for the taste of green tea, then you could be disappointed.

Teacher Grade: A (because it is still a good IPA)

Das Racist – Relax

Rap is one of those things I have a tough time really buying in to.  It may be the current state of the rap community, or it might just not be something I can really grasp a whole lot.  It always seems like a bunch of guys telling people how much money they have, how many girls they get, or what an amazing person they are. There are a few different type of rap styles that I tend to gravitate towards however.  One of them is the fast rapping style.  I remember when I heard my first Bone-Thugs-in-Harmony song.  I was blown away by the speed they rap at.  I’m still blown away by Busta Rhymes, Twista, and many other really fast rappers out there.  The other type of rap I really enjoy is the comedic rap.  I have always tended to enjoy Ludacris for this reason.  Although in recent years he has gotten more serious, I really liked his earlier funny stuff.  Das Racist definitely fall more under that comedic rap category; however, they are extremely skilled and original at the same time.

Das Racist definitely doesn’t look like your typical rap group.  The group is composed of composed of  lead MC’s Himanshu Suri (aka Heems), and Victor Vazquez (aka Kool A.D.) and hype man Ashok Kondabolu (aka Dap).  Having two members of Indian descent and one of a Cuban background is a little different from your typical rap group.  Perhaps even more surprising than when the great-white-hope Eminem came out. But these guys show that they can definitely rap with the best for them.

Their sound is definitely slightly different from anything really being put out there right now. The song that put them on the map, “Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell”, had some people really wondering what they were even listening to. They do use the occasional hook to rap over, but they are not always your traditional sounds you would expect someone to use.  Perhaps my favorite song, off their album “Shut Up, Man”, called “You Oughta Know”, features the Billy Joel song “Movin Out”. (See sound clip at the bottom).  Their clever use of the song is amazing, but also just helps to show that they don’t take themselves too seriously.  The entire chorus is mostly spent mocking the original.  And, while their lyrics don’t appear to make much sense, their repetition of different sounds and words really creates a fun flow.

Relax not only fine-tunes, but also, picks up where their previous two mix-tapes left off.  The first single off the album, “Michael Jackson”, is definitely one of those songs that will get stuck in your head, but you’ll have no idea why.  The chorus, “Michael Jackson/a million dollars/ you feel me/holla”, makes very little sense, if any sense at all, to me.  However, the catchy factor is certainly there.  Once again, it is hard to understand what they are talking about in nearly any of the verses; however, they show the skill that they have for creating great rhymes.  They really use a lot of repetition of sounds and syllables to makes everything really hard hitting and catchy.  Their humor really comes out of this song as well.  I laugh nearly every time when the first verse ends with the adamant line, “I’m f*cking great at rapping!”.  Make sure you check out the video at the bottom.

Relax really is a good name for this album as many of the songs do feature the artists as seeming rather relaxed on the songs.  The title song that starts off the album has the first vocalist sounding rather subdued and laid back.  He definitely has some very clear and fluid rhymes here.  “Happy Rappy”  is another song that features the vocalists seeming rather comfortable in their genre.  They sit back and just flow for most of the song.  One of the more interesting aspects of the song is how they essentially start the whole song rhyming over the sounds of a baby making happy sounds.  Don’t give up on this song at the start though.  Even though they begin the song by counting from 1-20, they do eventually make it into real rapping. One other song that seems to almost feature a bored sound is “Brand New Dance”.  They actually start the entire song by sighing, and right in the first verse, it almost seems like they gave up writing lyrics and decided to make some noises.

One other thing Das Racist does great is rap over crazy interesting sounds.  One of my favorite things they do is rap over traditional Indian music.  “Punjabi Song” features not only the Indian beat, but also some fun singing as well.  These guys fit their rhymes right in there real nicely.  This is something they did on their last album a few times, and I’m really happy they kept up on this one.  “The Trick” features a lot of computerized blips and bleeps that a lot of other artists probably wouldn’t think to rap over.  A few other songs like “Celebration” and “Girl” seem to be almost rapped over 80’s pop songs.

If you’re not into rap, but you really like well constructed original music, check these guys out.  I am very selective about the rap I pick up, and these guys are definitely worth giving a chance.  Keep an open-mind and try not to take these guys too seriously.  They definitely don’t.

Teacher Grade: A

 

Terrapin – Reunion Ale ’11

There are so many brewers out there that I have still never had the pleasure of tasting before.  Therefore, when I go to the store to pick up something, I look to figure out if there is anything from any of these breweries I really can’t live without.  One Saturday I went to the store to pick up a few special releases from Stone and managed to find this special release from Terrapin.

Looking through the Terrapin line-up, it appears they have a lot of interesting different beers I think look and sound quite good.  This one is a special collaboration with Shmaltz brewing company.  These two companies got together to create this beer they refer to as “A Beer for Hope”.  For three years now, Terrapin has put out a new version of their Reunion Ale to benefit research for Myeloma and Bone cancer research.  This is in honor of their friend and inspiration that died from the disease.

While I still seem to always manage to walk by many great looking Terrapin beers without picking them up, I actually had to pick this one up because of the description of the beer inside.  The bottle states that this is a dark ale brewed with cocoa nibs, vanilla, and chili peppers.  Now, I have had a few different types of beers that have sort of a smoky type of flavor.  I’ve really enjoyed the Rogue – Chipotle Ale which is brewed with roasted chipotle pepper, and I’ve also enjoyed a limited amount of rauchbier, which tastes like straight up barbecue to me.  However, I really wanted to try something that would most likely have a little more of the spicy kick at the end.  Hopefully, this one wouldn’t disappoint.

The pour has a very dark reddish tint to it.  It’s definitely a dark beer; however, there is clearly an auburn hue in there as well.  The actual beer is overall quite hazy.  I definitely think it has something to do with the wide array of ingredients used to create this interesting beer.  You can see there is some nice carbonation in the glass as well.  The head has a slightly brownish tint to it, although it really doesn’t develop too much on the pour.  Really there is only about a quarter-inch of head on top.  Swirling the glass brings about the same amount of head and some very light lacing.  The lacing isn’t too plentiful but does last quite a while.

The smell is a little citrusy, which I found surprising.  I feel like maybe these are brought on by the small amount of hops that are in the brew.  The other very strong scent is a deep rich vanilla smell.  I really don’t pull out a huge amount of chocolate, but it is noticeable.  I think the vanilla will definitely be more prominent on the taste than the chocolate.  Also, there is a very woody malty scent to this one as well.  I was most surprised that I didn’t pull out any spicy chili aroma in here.  The chili peppers were definitely my main reason for buying this one, so I’m hopeful it won’t be hidden in the taste as well.

Well, it is definitely not hidden in the taste.  All in all, this has one of the most interesting flavor profiles I’ve had in a while.  You can really pull out each individual ingredient.  The citrusy flavor comes on at the start; however, it is nicely blended with some deep malt flavors.  From there the real journey begins.  First there is a quick hit of chocolate.  The chocolate is immediately overwhelmed by a strong vanilla flavor.  The vanilla is definitely powerful and lasting.  When the vanilla starts to depart, the chocolate quickly returns for the finale.  That’s not where it end though.  The chili peppers must be felt.  The chili peppers hit the back of your throat first, but then you realize your entire tongue is feeling the tingle too.  It’s a very strange feel in a beer, but it actually works.

The mouthfeel is actually kind of hard to describe in some ways.  The carbonation is there, but really more as after thought.  It almost isn’t noticeable.  It’s the balance that is really hard to describe.  The hops, malts, vanilla, and chocolate all work together really well, but then you throw in the chili pepper surprise that throws your mouth for a loop.  It doesn’t create a bad aftertaste, but the spiciness definitely lingers on the tongue and throat for a very long time.  The chili peppers really throw the entire balance off.

Overall, I think I might like the concept of this beer more than the actual result.  I want to love it, but I almost find myself with a slight stomach ache after half a bottle.  This one could be helped by being a smaller bottle, but I simply think it will be a great beer for some, and an okay beer for others.  In the end, I think I have to go with okay for me.  But, check it out and let me know what you think!  I have a feeling some people with adore this brew.

Teacher Grade: C+

New Holland – Beerhive Tripel Ale

Have you ever gone to the beer store with the intention of buying one bottle, but somehow managed to walk out with far more than you originally went for.  This seems to happen to me nearly every time I go to the store.  When I was younger it was the same type of danger I would get walking into a music store.  I walk in there to find one album, but the joy of finding so many other things would over take me, and I would walk out with 5 CDs instead.  Somehow I never really see this as a problem; however, my wife might (and has) disagree with me there.  Between seeing incredible new things, old favorites, and things that catch my eye, I just can’t keep myself to any one bottle. Such was the case the Saturday I learned Life and Limb 2 was available at my local store.  Heading down there, my main intention was to simply purchase that bottle and be gone.  I, however, ended up with Life and Limb (review upcoming), my previous duckrabbit review, and this bottle of New Holland.

New Holland has that every brew lovers dream story to it.  This is the story of two homebrewers who met in college, shared a love of making good beer, and decided to take it full-time.  Of course it’s always more complicated than that, but I would like to think it’s that easy.  New Holland is located in Holland, Michigan, and initially, it was thought that was right where their beer would stay.  However, as they continued to gain popularity, they managed to increase production and move out into a bigger market.  This of course makes me happy.

This particular bottle is in the traditional style of a Belgian tripel.  Now tripels definitely have to be up there as some of my favorite beers; however, this one has a different take on that.  In the recipe is a spring wildflower-honey and ginger. I have had some beers brewed with different ingredients; however, never one that combines these two.  Needless to say, I was very excited for this tasting.

The appearance on the pour is slightly darker than I was expecting.  I typically expect that most tripels are lighter in color.  This one however pours out a reddish auburn color.  The beers clarity is a little hazy.  It also had very little head develop on the pour.  It was really only about half an inch to less.  The lacing on the glass isn’t too substantial; however, swirling does allow the lacing to last fairly long on the sides.  I think the haziness and slight lacing are mostly due to the honey included.  This, or the ginger, may also result in the darker color.

The smell seems pretty normal to most tripels I’ve had.  There is some fairly heavy orange citrus scents on the initial smell.  This heavy citrus smells give way to more of a cinnamon apple smell.  I was a little surprised to pull out something comparable to cinnamon in there.  I’m not sure if the honey or ginger is reacting to create that.  I don’t really pull out a ton of hops; however, the malts are certainly present as well.

The taste here seems a little lighter in flavor than your typical tripel.  It’s almost not immediately recognizable as a tripel.  The start is kind of mellow and works into the nice citrusy flavor expected of your typical tripel.  These blend nicely from the citrus to that apple taste that was coming through on the nose.  The presence of the honey seems to linger right around here.  As you taste the honey, there is a nice little spicy kick of the hops.  I really didn’t smell hops present in this one; however, they are definitely noticeable in the taste.  The hops and ginger seem to create a nice little kick; although, on some sips it was a little off-putting.  The aftertaste is slightly sweet, which is also nice.

Mouthfeel has a high to moderate amount of carbonation.  It isn’t the most carbonated tripel I have ever had, but it has enough to keep it slightly refreshing.  I tend to not like an over carbonated beverage.  The flavors all blend quite nicely to create a well-balanced take on a tripel.  The hops are the only thing that seem a little out of place; however, I don’t hate them.  They don’t really manage to ruin the aftertaste at all.

All in all this is a great beer.  Being my first real taste of New Holland, I wasn’t really sure what to expect.  While it isn’t the greatest tripel I have ever had; it really stands up nicely to other American interpretations to the style.  If you’re looking for something different to try, definitely pick this one up.  I’m really looking forward to tasting a few other selections from their line-up.

Teacher Grade: B

Interview with Jeff Hancock – Co-founder of DC Brau

A few months back I went to a little event that was put on by one of my favorite bars on H street: Lil Miss Whiskey’s Golden Dollar.  We had gone there for really a few different reasons.  First of all, there was free scotch tasting upstairs that night.  I know very little about scotch, but it is one of those things I enjoy now and then.  Secondly, they were having a local bbq place sell their fantastic food on their back patio.  Thirdly, they were tapping the newest brew from DC Brau: The Corruption IPA.  At this point I had managed to have all of the other products put out by DC Brau, and I really wanted to keep that streak alive.  So we headed down to enjoy the festivities.

While there I crowded onto to the patio with quite a few others to enjoy the beer and bbq.  Eventually, and unknowingly, I ended up in conversation with Jeff Hancock.  While it still took a few minutes to realize, I did end up chatting with him for a little while, and eventually asking if I could send him a few questions for a little interview segment on here.

Well after a few months, all of which I am sure were spent brewing even more fine libations, Jeff got back to me with his responses.  Keep in mind these questions were sent a little while ago, so they don’t account for their new beers: The Citizen, El Hefe Speaks, or their upcoming Atlas Fest Bier, which will be available this weekend at the H Street Festival.

Q: What inspired you to start up DC Brau?

I had always wanted to own my own brewery. I know I didn’t want to do a brewpub concept and when I met Brandon Skall (my partner) I knew with our combined skill sets and the fact that DC hadn’t had a package brewery since 1956 we had to give it a shot.

Q:Explain the meaning behind the name, and what it means to you.

Brau means “to brew” in German and when you are branding a brewery the name is important. It is easily rememberable and worked for both Brandon and myself. 

Q:What are some of your favorite beers and styles of beer to drink?

First off let me start by saying I really haven’t met a beer style yet I don’t like. With that said, some of my favorites are Pale ale, IPA, Porter, Stout, Schwarzbier, Dunkels, Helles, Oktoberfest, Mild ale, Brown ale just to name a few.

Jeff on the left

Q: I know you have a lot of experience at some well established breweries, what are you bringing to DC Brau that you picked up from them?

I bring the confidence and multitude of skills I learned from all the brewmasters I worked under. Also, effective ways to manage the brewery from wort production to packaging, employee relations, quality control/ assurance and most importantly how to solve problems instead of make them.

Q: What are some of your future plans for DC Brau? (or at least those you don’t mind talking about)

We are currently planning a number of collaborations with breweries throughout the east coast and the U.S. We are working with Epic Brewing, Stillwater Ales, Cap City just to name a few. We are also adding more fermenters to the brewery with plans to expand into the warehouse space next door within 6-8months if we keep at our current pace.

Q: Your beers as of right now are only really available in the DC area, do you have plans to expand your distribution?

We do, we plan to eventually expand into Virginia and Maryland. When we can meet the demand of those states we will probably look to expand into bigger east coast cities such as Philadelphia, New York, Boston and some cities to the south as well.

Q: A lot of breweries are doing craft brew in a can now, what inspired you guys to package your product in a can?

We decided to use cans for a number of reasons. Cans are superior in preserving freshness as opposed to bottle’s which allow beer to get “light struck”. Cans are generally made with 80-90% recycled Aluminum. Cans are allowed in to most major parks and recreation facilities, beaches, picnic area’s, etc. 

Q: I really enjoyed your limited edition porter, are you planning on doing a lot of limited releases? What do you think is the benefit of making a beer available for a limited time?

The benefit of doing limited release beers is about creating something special and unique. I don’t think it has to be some crazy beer with an exotic ingredient. It can be as simple as choosing a basic recipe and brewing it as best you can. We have had an overwhelming response to our Penn Quarter Porter which is a Robust Porter. People are demanding that we make it a year round offering. But then it wouldn’t be limited. But at the same time it would allow me to develop another limited Brau release which I always love to do.

Q: Since we are also a source for music, what are some of your favorite bands to listen to? Have any bands really been a big inspiration to your brewing?

I am a big fan of Clutch, Black Sabbath, Siouxsie and the Banshee’s, Happy Monday’s, Blur, Pantera, Slayer. I like a lot of different styles.

Q: Recently DC Brau was instrumental in getting the beer tasting laws in DC altered, how was that process, and how soon can we expect tasting tours?

The process was not hard, it was mainly about educating our elected officials and showing them we just wanted the same rights that grocery stores and beer and wine stores have. The ability to taste our wares at our brewery. We currently do tours and tasting every Saturday between 1-4pm.Check out our Facebook page for current weekly offerings.