Saturday, March 15, 2008

philly beer week - south philadelphia tap room

As Philly Beer Week wound down, we decided to hit up the South Philadelphia Tap Room to try out Long Island brewery Blue Point's selection from the tap and the firkin. We had to wait around for a table; I mistakenly thought the waiter was going to be seating us, so I wasn't really paying attention, but apparently we had to grab our own table. I figured this out after the table Becca was going for was snagged by some other guy. Ah well, it turned out for the best because as we were waiting, the Blue Point sales guy showed up and we started chatting him up from the beginning. We scored keychain bottle openers before we sat at our table and the night was on.

First drinks were the Sour Cherry Stout, which was supposed to be the Oatmeal Stout but they didn't have it, and the Blue Point Pale Ale, which was supposed to be No Apologies, but they didn't have that either. Whatever, both were good and we didn't know what we were about to be drinking for the rest of the night anyway.

The sales guy tapped the firkin, which is a neat process involving driving wooden corks into the top of the firkin, driving the tap into the side of the firkin and spraying beer everywhere. I had never seen a firkin before; looks a lot like a small keg. In the firkin was the Rasta Rye - unofficially named at the moment, as they're talking to the Rastafarians about it. I was looking forward to trying this one out. For one, I had never had a rye before and, two, how can I resist a beer with Rasta in the name?

For dinner, we wanted the wild boar burrito, but they were out of it (somehow...) so I had to go with a steak (which was quite good and also appropriate since it was March 14th). It was seasoned really well, but the kitchen needs to work on the difference between rare and medium. This was obviously a rare steak, a happy mistake as Becca said, since rare is often a good thing. I was really in the mood for medium, though, so I was a little disappointed. But, between the steak, mashed potatoes, asparagus and a couple bites of Becca's Baked Chipotle Mac and Cheese, I couldn't finish all my food. Becca commented that the mac and cheese was a little too crunchy, so I took that to be over-baked.

With dinner, we ordered our first Rasta Ryes and wow, the taste of this beer shot out of the glass like a cannon. Becca exclaimed that it was "a taste explosion." I'm not the biggest fan of pale ales, maybe because I haven't found the right one yet, but this was delicious. The sourness of the rye really balanced out the bitterness of the hops. After the initial flavor explosion, the beer settled into simply being delicious, and I don't mean that negatively. We ended up drinking the Rasta Rye the rest of the night. The sales guy even bought us some.

We talked to the sales guy for nearly the entire time we were there. He was a really nice guy, as sales people kind of have to be, and he answered our questions about the beer. But mostly we got stories about his uncle (the rich one) and his wife (the proper one) and his ex-girlfriend (the whore) and his second business. He was awesome, made the night a lot of fun, and we "won" most of the prizes that he brought with him.

the haul

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