Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Fresh Hops? How about Capone's?

A fresh hop beer on draft? Two? Six?

How about ten fresh hop beers on draft? That's what Capone's has on this Thursday:

Manayunk Fresh Hop IPA
General Lafayette Fesh Hop IPA
Victory Harvest Pils
Victory Harvest Ale
Southern Tier Harvest Ale
Sierra Nevada Wet Hop Harvest Ale
Port Brewing High Tide IPA
Ballast Point Fresh Eye IPA
Left Hand Warrior IPA
Founders Fresh Hop Harvest

That's pretty damned impressive...you know, for the East Coast.

Like I've always said: we'll take the best you've got, because what we want in beer...is everything. And that's what makes Philly great!

8 comments:

kmudrick said...

Sadly, not one of the foobooz "Top 50 Bars in Philadelphia" despite it being open to other suburban bar/restaurants. :(

Web designer said...

Recent growth in the wine industry has cannibalized some of the beer industry. While as a nation we could consume more, there is of course a limit. At that point growth of one industry will come at the expense of the other.Perhaps the point is, for most of us, there is a time to enjoy both.

Jim said...

Hey Lew,

I'm visiting Philly this weekend - never been before. Any tips on what not to miss on the beer scene? Any good Halloween tips?

Many thanks,
Jim from Maine

Lew Bryson said...

kmudrick, while Capone's undeniably has a great beer selection -- an obsessive, amazing beer selection -- it's not high on my list for...what, "bar-like qualities." There's much more to a great bar than the booze/beer that's served there, and I think that's what's holding Capone's back for a lot of people.

Wd -- your figures are out of date. The wine industry's taking it on the chin -- sales of $15+ bottles particularly -- and beer's flat, at worst, and craft continues to grow. But no, it's not a game to root for like fans. Wine and beer are two drinks, and there's no reason not to enjoy both. I know I do -- and spirits as well, of course, and a good cider. I draw the line at mead, though. I've had very few meads I actually enjoyed, none of them commercial.

Lew Bryson said...

Jim,
No clue on Halloween; just never been a big holiday/scene on my personal radar. I'm more a 4th of July kind of guy.

But the Philly beer scene? In a weekend? Whoosh. I've got a list of beer bars I've been to, or consider worth getting to, that I've compiled for the new edition of my book. It's in 8.5 point font, three columns, and it runs three pages. That's not including the very vibrant suburban beer scene or the brewpubs. Let's see...

You should get to one of the city's Belgian-homage bars. Monk's and Eulogy are crazy crowded on weekends (Monk's more so); try Belgian Cafe. McGillin's is the city's oldest, 150 years in January -- gets real busy in the evenings, very nice during the day, crazy during World Series games -- and has a house IPA. Other top picks: Standard Tap (good food, all local draft beer), Memphis Taproom (not the 'usual suspects' on draft), Grey Lodge Pub (fantastic bar with beer you won't find elsewhere), McMenamin's (good food, good beer, great atmosphere, 1/2 block from excellent Earth, Bread + Brewery brewpub), and Good Dog (for the good beer and excellent burgers). Brewpubs: the aforementioned EB+B, Nodding Head (great session-strength beers), Triumph (get the medal-winning lagers), Dock Street (old-days no-frills brewpub w/great beer and pizza), and Manayunk (huge, and busy, and young, but don't underestimate it).

Now...if you only had time for four places? Get to Monk's early on Saturday afternoon, then walk over to Jose Pistola's. Travel once and walk from McMenamin's to EB+B. You'll miss some great places, but that's going to happen no matter what you do. Oh, and brunch at Standard Tap on Sunday before you go home!

Have fun, Jim.

Russ said...

I've got to say that, while I generally prefer malty beers to hop bombs, most of the wet-hopped beers I've tried have really blown me away. It's great to see more brewers--and bar owners--getting in on the fresh hop action!

Lew Bryson said...

Yeah, Russ. I really like most of the new fresh hop beers we're seeing.

Syllogism said...

Made it over to Capone's on Friday and the fresh hop list was impressive. Post's Fresh Hop was amazing... quintessential west coast ale that had the aroma and brilliance of taste that I used to ascribe to SNPA. I only sampled four of the fresh hop beers.. General Lafayette, Manayunk, Post and Founders. The one that I liked the best was actually the General Lafayette. The beer was balanced, good malt flavor and a nice hop aroma and finish. Didn't get to try Victory Pils there which I think might also be more balance.

In terms of Capone's as a bar, it mixes being a neighborhood place with being a place a beer geek would enjoy. Food wise their burgers are outstanding, hot ham and brie is a good standard, and their soups are good too (escarole is super.) And whenever Matt is behind the bar you can get a good chat in about beer.