Saturday, March 5, 2016

DC Brewery Tour

For Keith's birthday this year, I planned a local brewery tour to check out the latest trend of beer homegrown here in DC.  Since some of the locations are not that convenient to a Metro station, I highly suggest taking Lyft so you don't have to worry about drinking and driving.  Check out our photo recap below.

Right Proper Brewing Company is "a small, community focused brewery committed to producing soulful, balanced beers for our neighbors in Washington, D.C." Their Brookland Production House & Tasting Room is located at 10th and Girard Street, NE. The tasting room offers a view of the brewery while sampling the latest offerings. Tours of the brewery are offered regularly on the weekends. My favorite beer was the White Bicycles, a rustic Witbier, 5.3% abv., brewed with black limes and Mandarina Bavaria hops and fermented in 45 hl French oak foudres with a house mixed-culture of wild yeasts. It was citrusy, delightfully dry and refreshing.

3 Stars Brewing Company is "a brewery delivering on the promise of bringing locally hand crafted artisanal ales to the DC beer community." To date, the brewing team at 3 Stars has released over 40 different distinctive beers and cultivated a reputation for pushing the envelope when it comes to creativity.  My favorite beer was the Peppercorn Saison, a Belgian style Farmhouse Ale, 6.5% abv., that has a slightly sweet fruity nose, hints of grass and coriander, smooth underlying bitterness, clean dry finish, and smooth lingering citrus notes.  It was very drinkable without compromising flavor.

Hellbender Brewing Company was "created out of a true love for the art, culture, history, and science of beer" by two local home brewers.  Tours are available at 2pm, 3pm, 4pm & 5pm every Saturday unless otherwise posted. No tours on Sundays. My favorite beer was the Red Line Ale, a full-bodied American Red Ale, 6.0% abv., that showcases a deep ruby red color and rich toffee aromas. Generous doses of late addition American hop varieties add floral notes with hints of orange and citrus. It has a big body, but finishes light and refreshing.

One Eight Distilling is "named for Article One Section Eight of the Constitution, which among other things provided for the establishment of a district to serve as the nation’s capital. Our passion to build a distillery came from a desire to produce the finest spirits from grain to glass all within Washington, DC." Though not a brewery, we decided to check out this distillery since we were in the neighborhood.  Here we tried vodka, gin, and white whisky (aka moonshine). My favorite spirit was the Ivy City Gin, an American dry gin distilled from locally-sourced grains (63% rye, 26% corn, and 11% malted rye), 40% abv., with a complex yet well-balanced taste profile that features forward notes of Juniper and Spicebush, and a subtle bouquet of eight additional botanicals.  It was very floral and would be interesting in a warm-weather cocktail.

Atlas Brew Works "produces hand crafted artisanal beer in 20 barrel batches" at their facility in Ivy City in Northeast DC. The Tasting Room is open 5-8pm Friday, 1-8pm Saturday & Sunday. This was the smallest of the facilities, yet still had a fun ambience of music and food trucks.  My favorite beer was the Ponzi, an American IPA, 7.3% abv., featuring generous additions of Cascade, Chinook, and Mandarina hops, followed by hints of Munich malt.

Have you done a brewery tour before? What are some of your favorites breweries and/or beers? Share in the comments below.

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