We teased you.
We promised you.
We threatened you. (Well, Dan did.)
And now it's finally here:
That's right, folks: three days of session beer events. If that's not a Session Beer Project, I don't know what is. Ortino's Northside in Zieglersville, which hosted my first Session Beer event back in March, has stepped up to the plate with three events that promise extended drinking pleasure, smaller beers that will let your drinking day last longer. Radical.
It all starts Thursday May 24th at 6:30, when I host another session beer dinner. We'll be out on the new patio -- with the new outdoor bar and tap system -- getting into summertime mode with a menu of steamers, bar-b-que chicken, and tater salad. Nice light stuff, and we'll have some great lightweight beers (is that fun to say? You bet!): Allagash White, Stoudt's Weizen, some Kölsch from the new Union Barrel Works in Reamstown, a very rare out-of-Philly appearance of Nodding Head Berliner Weisse, an even rarer Pennsylvania appearance of East End Wheat Hop (because this Pittsburgh brewery is in Westsylvania, y'know), and a final special treat, the classic lambic Oud Beersel Framboise. That's value for the money at a $40 ticket. You can get them by stopping by The Northside or calling 610-287-7272 during business hours.
Then on Friday, May 25th, drop by for our "Cask Away" night, when we'll be serving up some perfect pins of session beer that washed up on the Zieglersville shore. It's pay-as-you-go in a challenge to Philadelphia: they say the suburbs don't drink cask ale. With beers like Nodding Head's All Night Ale (an espresso-infused dark mild) and Legacy Brown Aled Girl, I figure the suburbs will be there for a serious session. (We're still arranging beers on this one; we'll have at least five, and I'll put them up as we get them.)
The big event is Saturday, May 26th, when we unveil what we believe is the first event of its kind anywhere in the U.S.: a festival of session beers, where no beer will be served that's over 5.5% alcohol by volume. Get some great beers that won't sucker-punch you! A partial list: Southampton- Secret Ale, Flying Fish Farmhouse Summer Ale, Legacy Reading Pilsner, Victory Whirlwind Wit, Stoudt's Weizen, Lancaster Summer Rye, Erie Mad Anthony Ale, Sly Fox British Pale Ale, East End Wheat Hop (plus another, probably Fat Gary Nut Brown), Church Brew Works Pious Monk Dunkel, General Lafayette Pacific Pale Ale, Iron Hill Belgian Pale Ale, Union Barrel Works Kölsch, and some more of that Oud Beersel Framboise. You may also see some Weyerbacher Blanche, Penn Weizen, Barley Creek Brown, Climax Helles, Summit Wheat, Brooklyn Brown or Lager, ABC Pilsner, River Horse Summer Blonde, and Tröegs Dreamweaver, and we're still trying to decide what to pour from Nodding Head, Dogfish Head, and Yards. Saturday starts at 1:00 and it is all pay-as-you-go, no entrance fee, ticket, secret password, or nothin'.
Now...is that session enough for you?
I'm doing a little research myself this weekend with a sixtel of Flying Fish Farmhouse Ale at a family event. As Uncle Jack mentioned at the Beer Yard site, I was involved in a blind judging panel at the recent Manayunk Beer fest, where we picked this as Best of Show out of a field of 21 entries. I always liked the FFFA, but the blind tasting made me decide to have another look. Just in case the session should pale -- or it gets cold, or a snake bites someone -- we've also got a case of Brooklyn Local 1 and some Victory Saphir Bock. It pays to be prepared.