Got an e-mail from Michael Naessens, self-styled "King of Philadelphia Craft Beer." Seems he's laboring under some misapprehensions about what a blog is, even though he writes one himself at myspace (no, I'm not going to link to it; Google it, like I did):
"...you should have contacted me first to explain if you took issue by the way. I believe as a reporter that is proper technique, but we all make mistakes, the important thing is craft beer thrives."
See, Michael, I'm not reporting. It's a blog. I'm making comments on what I see around me, what I hear, what I taste. If I wanted to get your spin on it, I would have contacted you. But the whole idea of a blog is to put out my spin on things.
Michael's interesting spin on things is that "King of Philadelphia Craft Beer" actually means something more like "champion," as in someone who champions craft beer in Philadelphia. You know...if he'd said that, I would have found it much less ludicrous, so much so that I probably wouldn't have written anything. But..."king?"
Still, he did say further along that he would "not respond ever again to negative actions with a negative response, no matter what happens." So we've got that to look forward to.
Which is actually a pretty great thing, if he's serious. Because Eulogy is a cool place, and has a lot of very good beer that Naessens has introduced to a whole new crowd of drinkers, not "the usual suspects." I think Beneluxx Broad Axe will probably be pretty neat, too. And if Naessens could just take that coolness, and neatness, and thriving business, and be happy with it, the craft beer scene in Philadelphia would be better off for it. We don't need the constant snarky comparisons with Monk's. Get on with your business, make with the coolness, serve good beer and enjoy life.
Michael, if you're reading (and now I know you are...), that's called praise. Here's more, from my January "Best of 2006" Buzz on my website:
Most surprising Philly area bar I was in this year: Eulogy. After giving Eulogy the shit for years -- and from my experiences, they deserved it -- I had a great time there this year, on three different occasions. Good beer selection, reasonable prices, great service, and yes, excellent frites. Impressive. With Triumph opening across the street in early spring, and a local constellation of beer spots that includes the Khyber, Brownie's, Race Street Cafe, City Tavern, and the Society Hill Hotel...it might even be worth parking in Old City. Cheers, Michael!
Like the man said: the important thing is craft beer thrives. At every establishment.