What makes a Happy Hour so happy my little beer guzzling babushkas? Is it the low priced frou-frou drinks and fanciful apps? Or is it simply because the work day is over and it’s time to get your proverbial swerve on with your fellow co-workers. Yes, here at Happy Hour you can communally vent about all the endless and soul crushing paperwork from your supervisor (who sucks your will to live flowbee-style eerily like the soul-less Kevin Spacey in the movie Horrible Bosses) and binge your blues away. Well, if you were at the On Tap & 201 Bar‘s Grand Re-opening Happy Hour on September 28, you were there to party and true happiness at any Happy Hour comes from drinking great beer in an environment that’s comfortable—and hey, maybe you’ll score some digits for the weekend, broheim! Let’s face it, that borderline skunky cheap beer at your local corporate mega bar is just not going to cut it for you anymore. Luckily Beerdos, 201 Bar has you covered. Stay classy and stay happy every hour at DC’s newest moderately upscale beer venue.
201 Bar (formerly Lounge 201 at 201 Massachusetts Ave. NE; 202-544-5201; www.201bar.com) is a newly renovated classy cocktail lounge and beer bar in Capitol Hill just a stone’s throw away from Union Station. Complete with 12 rotating craft beer drafts, over 40 craft bottles and a half-priced happy hour, 201 Bar is going to keep you hop happy. With a healthy mix of young professional clientele, go-getters and Hill staffers paired with a trendy bar scene and chic private party rooms, 201 Bar also delivers something unique near Union Station—a good beer selection. I met up with assistant GM and beer director Michael Haigis pre-On Tap Happy Hour event to imbibe some of their more fanciful suds and I tried my best to pay attention—and not stare at the gorgeous bar staff and patrons mingling around me like beautiful beer fairies. What can I say guys, this bar has good beer and talent!
I started things off with the Goose Island Pere Jacques, 8%, a vintage, high-end Belgian Dubbel ale with dark fruit and toffee, caramel and molasses tones. Slightly boozy, but yummy—it was a great start. Rating: A slightly “Im-pere-ing” Golden Goose of a beer (too much of a stretch?). The Goose Island Imperial IPA, 9.2%, was hoptastic as predicted with citrusy fruit notes, an overall sugary heaviness and nice smokey flavor. It’s a total piney hop bomb with a dry aftertaste that will stick with you—kind of like that last relationship that looms bitterly on your tongue only this one literally “hops” on to your taste buds and doesn’t let go. Rating: Hop on the Tongue Twister with this dry double IPA.
‘Tis the season for pumpkin beer, Charlie Brown, so next I tried the Starr Hill Boxcar Pumpkin Porter, 5.2%, a watered down, drinkable, malty pumpkin beer that Michael assures me sells like hot cakes because it’s so easy to drink. I agree. It has pumpkin spice, but it’s not overpowering or thick, and unlike most pumpkin beers you can drink more than one without feeling like you ate a pumpkin pie. Rating: Pumpkin version of a Michelob Ultra err..Porter—whatever beer snobs, I don’t feel guilty drinking it and it goes down like brown! The Widmer Kill Devil Brown Ale, 9.5%, was a limited release, earthy and creamy brown ale with vanilla and rum tones that come from the dark rum barrels it’s stored in. Booziness is hidden fairly well. Rating: Vanilla Niceeee. Lastly, for dessert we popped the top on a Southern Tier Crème Brulee Stout, 9.6%. Not only did it smell like candy, but it tasted exactly like Crème Brulee. Aptly named dessert beer. Rating: Have your cake and eat it, too, pal. See you next time kids!
Have a beer for the beer hunter to try? Email email@example.com.
Who’s your Natty Daddy?
Football is upon us and so is the advent of the new special edition Ravens football themed Natty Boh 16oz can. Yes, our favorite one eyed man is donning purple and holding a pigskin to celebrate Baltimore’s great football heritage and these tallboys will be available at most bars and retails stores in the area. Ravens fans unite! The replacement refs may not know how to call the game, but you’ll be prepared for the tailgate with some “big hits and big taste with a Natty Boh in hand”! (There’s also nothing like having a job where an energetic PBR rep drives all the way from Baltimore to bring you a free 6 pack—the staff here at OT salute you!). www.nationalbohemian.com