Sunday, June 05, 2011

Philly Beer Week 2011: Day 2 Wrap-up

Link to Day 2 Pictures (Google/Picasa)

Did, Saw, Heard: If you thought it was a fair question to ask yesterday of just how many pictures I could possibly take of the Opening Tap opening ceremonies, you might ask a similar question today about the Throwdown in Franklintown, Part 2.

And you'll be glad to know, though, that I feel your pain and edit out at least half of all the pictures that I actually took. Nonetheless....

Some combination of the gods of beer week and mother nature smiled yet again upon the decision to move to PBW from March to June. It was another near picture perfect day for outdoor events and walking the city. That meant sneakers, dogs, beer, and food.

After an early morning tap line cleaning project at my house, Patty and I took Callie for her first city beer event — she's seven months.

Varga seemed the natural first stop where we had a great brunch. Evan Turney and crew were still getting setup for their block party when we arrived. And though we left before some of the real frivolity began, there was a healthy crowd already filling the tables and street, playing ladder golf, washoes, and dunk tank (can you "play" dunk tank?!).

Just after we left, a wing-eating contest and the search for the next Varga calendar/pin-up girls were due to begin to continue the party in the early evening.

The next outdoor event took us back to our old stomping grounds near Fairmount.

At Kite & Key, I'll say as I did two years ago. The 'Throwdown' is really something that must be seen in person to be fully appreciated and enjoyed.

This year, Tom Kehoe was out for bloody revenge after a devastating loss in '09. The entrances were grand as expected, though no 9th Police District personnel were involved this time.

Oh, and in the ranks of beer-related t-shirts, Jim Kirk (Kehoe's opponent and K&K owner) has a new one that is unrivaled in my experience: "Kehoe is my Bitch." You'll need to check out the pictures for the visuals.

Kehoe was the one bloodied, though victorious, in the end. I can only imagine what this portends for Throwdown in Franklintown, Part 3....the rematch!

On the undercard were two hotly contested bouts. One with two leading local ladies, Suzanne Woods (Sly Fox) and Wendy Domurat (Dogfish Head). Wendy looked strong early but faltered as Suzy regained her legs after a rough Friday night. Talk about rallying!

Then, a tag team match that was out-of-control from the get-go. Mashingtons versus Rutherfords. Even Casey Hughes (Flying Fish), the ref, got involved. Somewhere Andre the Giant and the Macho Man are shaking their heads in shame.

After a perfectly pleasant walk back across town in Center City, I was able to sneak in between two events at Good Dog and have a quick North Coast Pranqster. They were killing off the North Coasts one by one (only Old Rasputin remained when I left) and were getting ready to put up a bunch of Ballast Points for the evening event.

I met up with a group of friends at Jose Pistola's and had two beers of polar opposites: a Berliner Weisse and a St. Feuillien Christmas. Fortunately, being there early evening meant the Christmas beers being featured during the 10 p.m. LudaCrismas event were available and the Belgian one is one of my more favorite ones.

It was a good time, though way too short, with friends. I rejoined Patty for dinner at Teresa's Next Door where we caught a nice dinner and some lovely remnants from the 12%/Stillwater/Shelton afternoon event that they conducted. That meant a nice Stillwater Jaded (Black IPA meets Saison?) and very way nice Struise/Stillwater collaboration called Outblack (Belgian Strong Black IPA-ish styled like no style you've had, but that's what made it great?).

A croque madame and some quick conversations with some other friends passing through in the early-to-mid-night hours and we off to recharge for Day 3.

Missed (according to others): We saw Alan Shapiro of SBS-Imports at Varga, chatted a while, and made a loose promise to maybe see him at Bishop's Collar, where he was checking in on a North Coast event. Not that North Coast is all too difficult to come by, but when they roll out some of their specialties during a special event, it's usually worth a look-see. We did not, however, as we got ensnared in the fun 'n' games at Kite & Key.

Also, I got out of town before Megan kicked off her Duvel/Ommegang event at Misconduct. Dipping into a Gnomegang would have been a nice option there.

And then there was Kingpin at Standard Tap, Firkin Riot at Johnny Brenda's, and on and on and on.

Today: Again, I will attempt to stick true to the rough draft plans that I drew up. If all goes well getting out of the house, the day will begin with brunch at Memphis Taproom, though Kennett sounds like they're doing a swell one as well with Sly Fox.

The weather may not be as ideal and a bit more unsettled today, though I know we'll make the most of it and soldier on.

Brauhaus Schmitz (strong German and Austrian beers), East Passyunk Avenue festival of events at eight locations, Monk's for Tomme Arthur, and the Iron Hill dinner at Good Dog are all possible stops along the way. Late night Quizzo at Local 44? Maybe. All depends, that's why there's an app for that, which by the way worked very well for me yesterday with its mapping and proximity features.

Question for you: And...what did you do? What was fun? What was disappointing? What was memorable?

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