Friday, June 10, 2011

Philly Beer Week 2011: Day 7 Wrap-up

Link to Day 7 Pictures (Google/Picasa)

Video from Sly Fox Kan Jam 2011 at The Four Seasons (YouTube), this one's for you Jack

Did, Saw, Heard: Life is full of coulddas, shoulddas, woulddas and last night was no exception. I could have stopped at Memphis Taproom for lunch, but was running short on time as I was picking up the last of the prizes for my Philly Beer Run event on Sunday at Dock Street.

William (Reed) and I should have moved on to the Finals of Sly Fox's Kan Jam 2011, but a bit of miscommunication cost us some points and our tough opponent seized the opportunity and put us away. But, it was a great run nonetheless. The Tossers shall return!

I would have hit up a handful of other beer events last night after the Sly Fox party at The Four Seasons 'With Love Beer Garden', but with a large family in attendance, we opted for a more comfortable group setting, Rose Tattoo, across the street from Kite and Key.

This turned out to be a nice, relaxing dinner after my afternoon "athletic endeavors" with plenty of room to spread out and catch up with family that we haven't seen in a little while. And, from a beer perspective, I discovered that the restaurant's beer list has come a long way since Patty and I used to stop in there regularly in the early 90s. Back then, it was typically beverage of the grape variety that we opted for in this horticulturally-inclined restaurant.

So I had an Allagash White with dinner. Not too shabby and in total keeping with the theme of Philly Beer Week.

I'd be remiss if I didn't back up here for a second and commend the tourism bureau and The Four Seasons for putting on a great show of local craft beer each day this week in the lovely courtyard between the office building and the hotel. Even with the stifling heat yesterday, the courtyard, the misters, the shade of the trees and buildings created a nice oasis for hanging out before and after, or in between other events.

The daily "show" has been put on with just the right amount of class that you'd expect from the high-end hotel chain, though without being "too much". I did get a kick out of, however, their insistence that "you don't need to walk through the hotel to get to the Beer Garden". That could definitely be taken a couple of ways.

Also commendable is Sly Fox's tremendous event that gets consumers involved. Standing around a bar, geeking out about the malt bill, hop profile, brewer/barrel stats gets a little old after the 119th time. You may, or may not, be surprised at how many people have mentioned this to me just this week alone.

Playing games or otherwise getting customers involved in an event outside of simply buying and tasting beers is something that Sly Fox (thanks to Corey Reid and his team for organizing this event) gets.

Missed (according to others): I checked in occasionally to the vast network of computers to find that the Memphis Taproom Vegan Dinner was very well received. Kite and Key packed 'em in for another Dogfish Night (if you haven't had the Hellhound yet, you may be missing out on something you'd like quite a bit...and quite a bit more of!). City Tap House put more Victory beer on tap than at the home brewpub. I haven't run across any opinions yet on the Night Market, but this was something else I was very interested to experience. Local 44 was hosting geek-worthy Laurelwood Brewery from Portland, Oregon. Exportation, which many that have had it really seem to be digging, at London Grill and Teresa's Next Door.

A takeover by Great Lakes at TJ's should have been the last stop on our tour yesterday, but the night just simply got too long and tiring and it was time to go home for dog duty -- as in dog 'responsibility', shall we say? :)

But, what's really to "miss" when there are still 3 more days of Philly Beer Week?

Today, Day 8: This is a tough one. I still need to make final preparations for the Philly Beer Run on Sunday. So, it's either tonight or tomorrow to do that. A lot will depend upon how life feels come the 5 o'clock whistle today.

What does sound nice for some Friday sampling, however, if I do choose to go the way of PBW, are things like: Christ Church Burial Ground tour; Sly Fox/Southampton Firkin-off at Good Dog; Wild Onion beer at Sticks and Stones; White Birch at North Star; Rob Tod and Allagash somewhere around town; Nebraska at The Sidecar; Craft Cans at Varga; Yards pin at Kennett; Abbey of Christ at Grey Lodge. Just a few choices in the city, right?

Or, more simply tracking down some Deschutes locally here at The Drafting Room, Great Lakes leftovers at TJ's, and/or the off-chance of running into some Exportation remnants at Teresa's. 'Riding the Rails with Boxcar' in West Chester also sounds like a great way to spend the last Friday of PBW '11.

Another day, another bunch of tough decisions to make. There are worse problems to have.

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