Beer Week: Sifting Through The Suds

The 800 lb elephant in our office today is Beer Week. Like a huge, malty, hoppy, fizzy behemoth, the snowball of drunkenness is quickly rolling towards us at 100 miles. Per. Hour. Making heads or tails out of this insanity is gonna be tough, but know that whatever events you do attend, will be historic. Because if you haven’t heard yet, Philly Beer Week is now officially the largest beer festival in the country.

Some of the biggest names in the business are taking a week off from their cozy homes across the U.S. to spend it drinking with all of you. So get out there and get drunk, for it’s truly our birthright this coming week.

Look for Phoodie’s Collin Flatt to be live blogging from a few select events, with pics and insanity as it happens. Now on with the picks.

Friday March 6th

Featured Pick:

Opening Tap – Comcast Center, 6PM - $40

The big kick-off happens at The Comcast Center at 6PM sharp, with a special Hammer Of Glory cracking open that first cask, which by the way, is our very own Yards Brewing Company ESA. The Dude will be there to paratake in the libations.

Also Of Note:

  • New Glarus Kick Off Toast  – South Philly Tap Room, 10PM – Free
  • Duvel Green First Official Tapping – Eulogy, 7PM – Free

Saturday March 7th

Featured Picks:

Lew Bryson’s Wheat Beer Breakfast Of Champions – The Grey Lodge, 9AM – Free

If you don’t know Lew, you better know. He speaks the gospel of beer, and we all listen. He is hosting a wheat beer event starting early on Saturday morning. Now we know the idea of getting up early on a Saturday after a night of drinking is crazy, but that’s what Beer Week is all about. Showing your intestinal fortitutde and gumption in the pursuit of an all day buzz. Start with Lew. Start with The Grey Lodge. Follow that with…

Philadelphia Brewing Company’s 1 year Anniversary Party – PBC, 1PM- Free

What else needs to be said? PBC had a hell of a first year, and we’re gonna go get drunk with them to celebrate. Today marks the release of their Russian Imperial, so get your first glimpse here. They had homeruns with their Black Lager and Coffee Porter, we can’t wait to taste this bad boy. We will see you there. Then we will see you at…

New Holland’s Burlesque Show  – The P.O.P.E., 11PM, Free

Leave it to POPE owner Dennis Hewlett to come up with stuff like this. Bringing in New Holland’s bad ass lineup of beer and their superfly rep Dr. Joel is always a good idea, but sweetening the deal with a burlesque review is the topper of all toppers. Watch out kids, get there early. This event might fill up sooner than you think.

Also Of Note:

  • Dock Street Scavenger Run with our good friend Bryan Kolesar of BrewLounge fame – Dock Street 10AM – Free
  • Ladies Beer Tea – The Belgian Cafe – $30
  • The South Philly Beer Bus (Visits SPTR, Sidecar, The POPE, For Pete’s Sake, and Devli’s Den) - 4PM – 1AM – Free
  • Johnny Brenda’s Stout Brunch – JB’s 11AM - Free

Sunday, March 8th

Featured Picks:

Brewer’s Plate – Penn Museum, 4PM – $60-$100

One of the highlights of Beer Week is the Brewer’s Plate event. Last year’s throwdown had some spacing issues, but this year they seem to have a solid handle on how many drinkers are ready to show up. Local brewers are pairing up with local eateries to do a food-n-beer jam of the highest order. Tickets are going absurdly fast, but you can scoop them at

Bell’s Eccentric Jazz Brunch – Sidecar Bar, 10:30 AM – Free

If you’re not drinking Bell’s Beer, you’re not living the right brewlife. The 2 Hearted Ale and HopSlam are two of Phoodie’s favorite beers, and Larry Bell himself will be playing jazz with The Sidecar Allstars. Bangin’.

Also of note:

  • Meet Paul Rutherford of Iron Hill –  The Good Dog , 5PM – Free
  • 2nd Annual Beer Week Chili Cook Off – The Khyber, 2PM – Free
  • Left Hand Brewing RockBand Tournament – P.O.P.E., 9PM – Free

Monday March 9th

Featured Picks:

Meet Matt Allyn Of Voodoo Brewing – The Institute, 2PM – Free

This is gonna be a good one. Voodoo Brewing has been making some serious beer for awhile now, and we can’t wait to meet the guy behind the juice. The Institute is ready to rock now with the place finished off and waiting to pop. Great reason to take a half day and get smashed. Shortly after imbibing at The Institute, we suggest you go to…

Meet The Beer Canners: Brian O’Reilly of Sly Fox and Marty Jones of Oskar Blues – TRIA Wash. West, 5PM – Free

Monday is shaping up to be just about the best day ever. After your Voodoo romp, good buddy and brewer of Phoodie’s Beer Of The Year, Brian O’Reilly of Sly Fox, will be at Tria along with the mastermind of Oskar Blues, Marty Jones. We know you know The Fox, but if you don’t know Oskar Blues, find some Ten FIDY and get back to us. Tell us it didn’t change your life and we’re not friends any more. Otherwise, toss ‘em back with two of our favorites. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSS!

Meet Garrett Oliver Of Brooklyn Brewing – The London Grill, 6PM – $TBD

The man who wrote The Brewmaster’s Table will be on hand to drink, meet, and greet all of his followers/fans. Look for a special beer and food pairing dilly-o going on.

Also of note:

  • Run and Drink with the Brewers, Adam Avery and Brian O’Reilly – The Bishop’s Collar 3PM – Free
  • The Session Beer Project with Lew Bryson – The Tiedhouse 6PM – $5 Cover
  • PBC Russian Imperial Stout on the Pump and Beer Quizzo – Doobies 8PM – Free

Tuesday, March 10th

Featured Picks:

Don’t Meet The Brewers: Stewart’s and Nodding Head – Nodding Head, 6PM – Free

Ric Hoffman of Stewart’s Brewing is the best brewmaster you’ve never heard of. His beer is spectacular, and you’ll probably never have it unless you come to this event, because of limited distribtion. DO. NOT. MISS. THIS. Not to be outdone, Nodding Head will be opening their beer vault and you can sample some of the best they’ve ever made.

Meet The Brewers Of Sierra Nevada – Grace Tavern, 10PM – Free

Sierra Nevada never gets proper due in today’s crazy microcraftlimitedsuperrare beer environment. Nouveau beer snobs think it’s too mainstream, and macro drinkers wouldn’t touch it. We can’t remember ever opening a bad bottle of The Nevada. We bounced this off of our beer mentors/brewers around town and they all agreed. Nevada still has it going on. The brewery itself has almost no carbon footprint, and even gives back energy to the grid. That’s awesome.

Adam Avery Meets The P.O.P.E. – The P.O.P.E.,  9PM – Free

In continuing our Meet The Brewer’s Tuesday, another stud of the brew world, Adam Avery, will be around town all week. Stop by the P.O.P.E. and meet the man who brews the suds of that tasty crazy Avery Maharaja Imperial.

 Also of note:

  • Meet The Brewer: Rudi Ghequire of Rodenbach – Monk’s Cafe 11PM – Free
  • Port Brewing Lunch With Tomme Arthur – Memphis Taproom, 1PM – Free
  • Beer Balderdash (Fact Or Fiction, Your Best Beer Soaked Story)- Standard Tap 9PM – Free
  • Lunch with Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head – Teresa’s Next Door 12:30PM – $TBD

Wednesday, March 11

Featured Picks

Brett Pack Cocktail Party – Nodding Head, 3PM – $85

The Brett Pack is a rockstar group of brewers. Big Tom Peters is throwing a dinner for the guys at Monk’s this very evening. That event is way sold out. But, there is another chance to meet Tomme Arthur (Lost Abbey of Port Brewing), Adam Avery (Avery Brewing), Sam Calagione (Dogfish Head), and Rob Tod (Allegash). Vinnie Cilurzo from Russian River will not be able to make it this year. But the rest of the guys will be at Nodding Head and you can meet them all if you purchase a ticket to this very special event.

Chef’s Bistro Dinner with Victory Brewing Company – Fork, 7PM – $45

One of our favorite restaurants is pairing with local powerhouse Victory Brewing Company. Tickets are already going fast for this ingenious dinner that includes Big V’s latest offering, Wild Devil, as well as the super rich and amazing Storm King. Get on the Wild D when you can, as it’s very limited and already marked as one of the ‘must-have’ beers for the week.

Philly Brewer’s Center City Pub Crawl – Jose Pistola’s, 6PM – Free

One of the best events of the week, this is a seriously drunk stumble through the city with all of your favorite local brewers. It kicks off at Jose Pistola’s at 6PM. The list is as follows:

Jose Pistola’s featuring Stoudt’s Brewing Pilsner
McGlinchey’s featuring Yards Brewing Smoked Polish Wheat
Good Dog featuring Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant Pig Iron Porter
Black Sheep featuring Flying Fish Brewing Hoppy Belgian Tripel
Nodding Head featuring Nodding Head Ich Bin Ein Berliner Weisse
Fergie’s featuring Troegs Brewing Nugget Nectar
Time featuring Sly Fox Brewing Gang Aft Agley
McGillin’s Olde Ale House – Meet all 7 brewers and sample their beers at the newly renovated upstairs bar of the city’s oldest tavern.

Also of note:

  • Meet Jim Koch: Sam Adams Imperial Release Party – Field House 6:30PM – $65
  • Sly Fox Drunken Spelling Bee – Fergie’s Pub 11:30PM – Free
  • Chimay With Bobo – Moriarty’s – 6PM

Thursday, March 12

Featured Picks:

Klash Of The Kaisers – Triumph Brewery, 6PM – Free

We absolutely cannot wait for this event, either. Being pilsner people, this event features the best pilsners from local breweries, and a few really special surprises. Expect some of the best beers of the week to be here and without a cover charge. Pilsneriffic. Yummy. Oh, and you get to pick the winners of the night. May the best bitter win.

Philly Beer Geek Finals – Manayunk Brew Pub, 7PM – Free

They crown the biggest beer nerd in the city every year at this event. Check out for more details about how you can wear the crown.

New Holland Dinner – Jose Pistola’s, 7PM – $65

Drink some great one-off beers with our buddy Dr. Joel and eat the wares of Jose’s. 5 courses with 5 beers sounds like it could get messy. Should be a great time with some really special brews. Dragon’s Milk, Sundog, and The Poet will all make appearances.

Also of note:

  • It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia with Ithaca Brewing – The P.O.P.E. 7PM – Free
  • Meet The Brewer: Rob Tod of Allagash – TRIA  Wash West- 5PM – Free
  • Meet The Brewer: Casey Hughes of Flying Fish -Good Dog  7PM – Free

Friday, March 13th

Featured Picks:

Friday The Firkenteenth – The Grey Lodge, 9AM – Free

The grandaddy of all beer nerd parties. Mike Scoats has built a Mecca of great beer in the Northeast, and his Firkenteenth parties are legendary. They will be rocking 7 firkins at 9AM, and as each one kicks, another one will take its place on the big board. This is a definite must-do for your Beer Week schedule. Be forewarned, the place gets packed quickly. Oh, and there’s a free shuttle bus between this event and…

Smoke ‘Em If You’ve Got ‘Em – Yards Brewing Company, 11AM - $15

Smoked beers from your local favorite breweries, special one-off projects, and amazing BBQ from some of the best restaurants and BBQ crazies around. What else do you really need to kick off your BBQness for the summer? $15 gets you a special glass, your first beer, and lots of yummy food.

Rare Founders Beer Dinner – South Philly Tap Room, 7PM, $95

Founders make our absolute favorite beers of ever. Backwoods Bastard, Double Trouble, and the Breakfast Stout. Come see and taste the largest collection of Founders beers outside of the brewery. Sure it’s gonna cost you coin, but for a once-in-a-lifetime event like this, it’s worth every penny. Tickets are limited to 40, so if you are even considering this event, get them now.

Also of note:

  • 2nd Friday Arts Opening With Left Hand Brewing – 12 Steps Down 7PM – Free
  • Meet The Brewer: Fergal Murray of Guinness – Plough And The Stars 4PM – Free
  • Meet The Brewer: Dean Browne of PBC – SouthWark 5PM – Free

Saturday, March 14th

Featured Picks:

The Brewery Bike Ride – Nodding Head, 11AM – Free

What could be better than a bike ride on an almost spring morning? How about beer? Solid pairing if you ask us. With stops at PBC, Triumph, Yards, Nodding Head, and Dock Street, you’ll get your beer on and a little bit of exercise.

PBC Kenzinger Presents Black Landlord - Johnny Brenda’s 9PM – $15

Black Landlord is a favorite around HQ and we couldn’t be happier to have beer week wrapping up with some music and great sesh brew. Hopefully you left a little room in your liver for some drunkjams.

Throwdown in Franklintown – Kite and Key, 2:30PM – Free

Tom Kehoe from Yards and Jim Kirk will wrestle at  the bar. We don’t need to say anything else. And we didn’t make this up.

Also of note:

  • Ginger Night With Yards and Troegs – The P.O.P.E. 8PM, Free
  • Meet The Brewer: Jeremy Marshall of Lagunitas Brewing – Doobies 5PM – Free
  • Rise And Fall Of Schmidt’s Brewery – PBC 2PM – Free

Sunday, March 15

Featured Picks:

Zythos America Belgian Beer Festival – Penn Museum 4PM, $45

If you don’t already know, Our region has more Belgian Breweries than anywhere else in the country. We’re called Brussels, US for a reason. Celebrate the quality Belgians made right in our backyard at this amazing event that features an appearance from Chris Bauweraerts from d’Achouffe. Thats reason enough to go, without all the rare goodness you will have access to during this wrap up to monumental Beer Week.

Philadelphia Real Ale Invitiational – Yards Brewing Company 1PM – $40-$50

Squeezing one more huge party out of Beer Week is what Yards and Triumph decided to do on the last Sunday. No rest for the weary, only the strong survive. The premier cask ale event of the week, there will be 20 firkins of brew, lots of other yummy eats, and music. Come see Steve Mashington try to stand upright.

Russian River Beer Extravaganza – Local 44 11:30 AM – Free

We told you about this last week, but we needed to remind you, because really, who the hell will remember anything at the end of  Beer Week. Come drink uber rare beers at one of Philly’s premier beersnob dens. Once they’re gone, they’re gone, folks. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

Also of note:

  • The Ides Of March: Specials From Beer Week Priced To Move – Brigid’s 11 AM – Free
  • That Totally Unnecessary Drink – Fergie’s Pub 7PM – Free
  • Unofficial Real Ale Invitational Afterparty – Pub and Kitchen 6PM – Free

  • Cristina Tessaro

    So I am sure going through all the events is dizzying enough, but I have been organizing the events for London Grill and would like to add/ clarify a few things.

    First, London will be premiering a few of Brooklyn’s beers in PA. On the list are BLAST!, Blunderbuss, Schneider 08, Black Ops, Brooklyn Brown, Local 1 and LOCAL 2! This is a nice casual meet and greet with a special menu with suggested pairing, but everything is optional and everything (except Black Ops) is available by the glass or flight.

    Also, on Tuesday March 9th Rudi Ghequire will be joining us in the US re-premiere of Rodenbach’s GRAND CRU! He will be talking and drinking beer around 6pm with Bart Brits, exporter of Palm. We will also be pouring Steenbrugge’s Doubble Bruin and Triple. Andy Newell of Flying Fish will be with us on Wednesday, Assistant Brewmaster of Sierra Nevada, Terrance Sullivan will join us Thursday to show off their Stout on our hand pump (6-8pm), followed by the fun loving PBC crew who will help us finish out the night. Finally there is a Magic Hat Pub tour in Fairmount on Friday with full on circus performers and a new beer premiere at each bar.

    Hope to see you at London!

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