Tuesday, June 18, 2013

There is such a thing as Italian Real Ale!

An Italian friend of ours spent three months in England earlier this year on an exchange. She arrived hating beer (being from Italy, that's not all that surprising; look what shit they get served up. Plus, they have wine, which goes better with pasta ;-) ). She was open-minded enough to attend a few beer festivals with us, however, and seemed to be developing a taste for the less hoppy (and less lagery) real ales by the time she left. Imagine our pride when we received the following emailed report on the state of craft beer in her home town in Italy!
I looked forward to tell you that the craft beer bar eventually reopened, Birra Cerqua.

The venue is very small, so it gets crowded quickly, but there's space outside as well. The atmosphere is relaxed. The guys who work there are very friendly and easy-going, even too much perhaps late in the night! They invited us to attend I don't know which phase of brewing yesterday, but eventually we didn't go. Next time.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Bier Baron, Washington DC

On Monday night we visited the Bier Baron in Washington DC, which is a homely cellar bar beneath the Baron Hotel (on 22nd NW between P & Q). It's a nice, grungy, English-style pub, with lots of niches and corners to make it feel more private—although it's a pretty large venue—wooden chairs and age scarred tables, uneven floor and mismatched chairs. In some ways it's more like a club, with id checked at the door and regular music and other events (there's a burleque night lined up next month, which I think I'm more glad than sorry to be missing), but on a regular night it's pleasant, not too noisy, with good service and, most importantly, hundred of bottled beers on offer. (A small selection of draft ales too, as usual I think all from keg.)