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Posts in "Drink"
August 18, 2014
Before the days of Starbucks in every urban street corner and suburban strip mall, “iced coffee” was rare. It had not yet arrived as a mainstay of American morning beverages, nor had the $4 coffee drink become the norm.
But now, iced coffee is here to stay — it’s come a long way since the days of the Starbucks bottled Frappuccino. Which is good news for just about everyone.
August 13, 2014
In each of our caffeinated hearts, there is a special place for iced coffee.
Arguably more refreshing than a beer, cheaper than wine, fewer calories than a lemonade, and more caffeine than iced tea: Iced coffee might be the perfect summer beverage.
But not all iced coffees are created equal. So Roll Call After Dark has taken up the challenge to do a quick comparison. Full story
August 8, 2014
DENVER — It’s not what the president drinks when he visits Wynkoop Brewing Co., but it’s still a great beer worth a quaff: B3K Black Lager.
The brewery that Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper founded back in the 1980s is a fixture of LoDo and frequently cited as the pioneer in revitalizing the neighborhood. And it brews pretty decent beer, too. When Hickenlooper and President Barack Obama dropped by last month to shoot pool and drink beer, the two Democrats drank Rail Yard Ale, the establishment’s best seller, according to the Denver Post’s First Drafts blogger Eric Gorski.
Maybe it’s a contrarian nature, but I went with B3K, a German dark lager that’s unfiltered and black as midnight, because in Colorado, hoppy ales have their run of the place. It was a good choice on a hot (for Denver) day. Smooth, easy to down and refreshing, the dark color belies its light nature. It’s a quaff that shouldn’t be missed.
Maybe next time the president comes to “shoot some stick with Hick” as one of my friends here called the visit, he could go lager.
August 4, 2014
DENVER — When at 5,280 feet elevation, drink Denver Beer Company’s Graham Cracker Porter. On what passes for a hot day here in America’s mile high city (90 degrees, no humidity, not a cloud in the sky), DBC’s headliner beer is the way to go. The brewery describes their creation this way: “Like a campfire in a glass, this robust beauty has seductive notes of vanilla, smoked cedar, and mulling spices. A dark pour with mild lacing, she is a rollercoaster of lush chocolate diving into a semi-dry finish of roasted malt and biscuit.” It’s hard to add to that, except to say that it goes down way too easy. The dog friendly, relaxed vibe reminds everyone that drinking beer on a summer day is a communal thing.
July 25, 2014
Cleveland has certainly gotten its props lately, scoring the 2016 Republican National Convention and the return of LeBron James to the Cavaliers. If one is looking for further evidence of Cleveland Rising, look no further than D.C.-based 3 Stars Brewing Company’s Danny Greene, an American Double/Imperial IPA.
Greene, an Irish-American mobster in Cleveland in the 1970s, has enjoyed a mini-boomlet of fame himself, even though he’s been dead since the Disco Era. Partial credit must be due to 3 Stars co-owner Dave Coleman, a Cleveland native.
As far as the beer goes, I’m happy to report it’s good for all occasions, whether at a leisurely weekday lunch accompanied by a cheesesteak and fries at Boundary Road or on a weekend bender at a 3 Stars summer jam.
For context on Greene and his time, Cleveland Magazine has a great treatment from 1978 in the wake of Greene’s murder. There’s also a gritty crime movie from 2011 by Jonathan Hensleigh, “Kill The Irishman,” starring Ray Stevenson, Vincent D’Onofrio, Val Kilmer and Christopher Walken.
July 18, 2014
If it’s summer in the capital region, it’s time for beer, crabs and Old Bay. And sometimes, it’s good to combine as many as possible in one package, such as Flying Dog Brewery’s Dead Rise Summer Ale.
The Frederick, Md.-based brewer’s latest mad scientist concoction, complete with Ralph Steadman bottle art, has been popping up more and more in Washington. I purchased my latest six pack at Hayden’s Liquor Store at Eastern Market, and partook of a flowing tap at Kelly’s Irish Times on Thursday.
For those counting themselves at Old Bay skeptics, give it a whirl. The celery salt brininess makes a nice baseline in the peppy ale. For those who can’t get enough Old Bay, you won’t need Roll Call After Dark’s encouragement to potentially overdo it with your table full of steamed blue crab by adding Dead Rise as your beverage of choice.
And if you’d like to go to the source, you’re in luck! This Saturday, Flying Dog is hosting its outdoor music/beer drinking session at its Frederick facility, with musical guests Lucero.
Questions? Flying Dog has an FAQ page for all your Old Bay-laced beer curiosity.
July 17, 2014
“Come on out tonight,” could be the unofficial motto for good-timing Memphis band Lucero, a band dedicated equally to touring and defying easy classification. Country? Sure. Punk? Why not. Roadhouse? Yeah.
You can fulfill their request — words from the “Downtown” track of their “Women & Work” album — a couple of different ways this weekend. On Saturday, Lucero plays at Saturday’s Summer Sessions at Flying Dog Brewery in Frederick, Md. General admission is $25. If you can’t make that, head over to Dewey Beach, Del., where they’ll be playing at the Bottle & Cork on Sunday.
Notice a theme in the venues? That’s right, my friend — fermented spirits!
July 14, 2014
How’s this for a city motto: Washington, D.C., where the yoga’s expensive and the beer is easy!
That might need a little work, but that’s the gist of the fiscal 2015 D.C. spending plan that is on a glide path now that the D.C. Council has over-ridden Mayor Vincent Gray’s veto of its $10.6 billion spending plan. That plan raised taxes on health club memberships and cut funding for a streetcar project, but contained language that allows D.C. burgeoning breweries to sell beer for on-site consumption, according to my Roll Call colleague Hannah Hess.
Get the message? Drink more beer, work out less! Right?
June 30, 2014
Independence Day in Washington is like Groundhog Day in Punxsutawney, Pa., a patriotic palooza. As if the stakes couldn’t be higher on the grandest stage at the capital of the free world, we could, possibly, be treated to yacht rock legend Michael McDonald singing “Sweet Freedom” with the Muppets as a follow-up act.
Of all the major holidays, D.C. really shines (or smokes, or swelters) on Independence Day, with the capital city coming alive with fireworks, concerts, Major League Baseball and even a fairground with midway rides.
Sure, the National Mall is the big gathering spot in D.C. for watching the fireworks come Friday evening, with the temporary concert venue on the West Front of the Capitol all set to blast tunes from everyone from McDonald to the Muppets to Frankie Valli for the Capitol Fourth celebration. What a fool believes! But the Mall and the Capitol grounds are not the only places to watch the pyrotechnics, not by a long shot.
Any higher ground vantage point, whether it’s Meridian Hill Park or the Iwo Jima Marine Corps Monument in Rosslyn, Va., or the roof of a pal’s apartment building will offer all the views with fewer sweaty souls jostling for precious few spots.
The fireworks and Capitol Fourth are a small component of the festivities, though.
The Washington Nationals, fresh from a Midwestern road swing in Milwaukee and Chicago, are back for a homestead against the Colorado Rockies, Chicago Cubs and Baltimore Orioles. On Friday, the Nats will play the Cubs in an 11:05 a.m. game that will feature lots and lots of flags and many beer cans emblazoned with Old Glory. Fireworks are usually to be had. Such an early game lets everyone get out in plenty of time to find their ways to the Mall, Capitol or that pal’s apartment building.
And let’s not forget about the D.C. Capital Fair at beloved RFK Stadium, which started June 27 and extends through Sunday. We might not be a state or have a vote in Congress, but we’ve got a fair, complete with a ferris wheel, a petting zoo and wolf show (no word on whether Nats outfielder Jayson Werth will be attending) and illusionists, hypnotists and plenty of greasy food. This week through Thursday, the fair runs from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. Starting Friday and going through Sunday, it runs from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Yacht rock, baseball, things blowing up in the night sky, fried food and carnies. What’s more American than that?
June 18, 2014
Do you know which Koch brother wanted to date Marla Maples, but thought better of it after Donald Trump picked her up?
How about which Koch brother donned a “Captain Koch” costume at the Wichita Gridiron Club?
Do you know which Koch brother wrote a play that provided source material for the film “Shakespeare in Love?”
How about which Koch brother opened up a bookstore, a John Birch Society bookstore?
Did you even know there were four Koch brothers? Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., only talks about two of them, Charles and David, while leaving Bill and Frederick largely out of the equation.
Mother Jones Senior Editor Daniel Schulman tells the tale of the K-Bros masterfully in his new book “Sons of Wichita: How the Koch Brothers Became America’s Most Powerful and Private Dynasty,” and he’ll drop by Roll Call Book Club on Thursday night to discuss not just the history of the Koch family and its behemoth Koch Industries, but the people behind it.
Be prepared. These folks play hard ball, especially with one another for control of a vast enterprise. How else to explain the Koch brother who subpoenaed his own mother, after she’d had a stroke, to testify in a lawsuit?
Drop by our free event at Hill Center at 921 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, starting at 6 p.m. Wine, snacks and books included. Register at Hill Center’s website.
June 17, 2014
It’s good to know all this eating isn’t going to waste: Washington, D.C., has landed itself on Livability.com’s list of Top Ten Foodie Cities for 2014.
Livability, the list-tastic media venture that loves to compile best downtowns, kid-friendly places and etc., likes to spread the wealth around in the list of Foodie fave towns and cities. In previous iterations, they kept the criteria to smaller cities and highlighted places that wouldn’t necessarily survive a head-to-head matchup with, say, New Orleans. In their 2013, list, for example, nearby Alexandria, Va., was on the list.
Roll Call’s own Warren Rojas can vouch for how much folks in D.C. like to eat. Check out some of his own coverage in our Hill Life Food and Drink Archive.
This year, Livability’s foodie-ranking criteria included the following:
• Frequency that residents eat at local restaurants
• Amount that residents spend on food
• Access to healthy food options
• Number of farmers markets
• Number of restaurants
• James Beard Foundation Award winners
So here’s to D.C. Now go out and eat something!
June 2, 2014
This is a good week if you like to drink beer, ride a bike and eat doughnuts and Nashville hot chicken.
May 29, 2014
There are worse ways to spend a Saturday than riding your bike and drinking beer. Thanks to the New Belgium Brewing Company, one may do both come this weekend, at the 2014 Tour de Fat at Yards Park on the Anacostia riverfront.
Starting with a 10 a.m. registration time on Saturday, cyclists/imbibers can hang out, listen to music, partake in a costume contest, engage in a slow ride race and drink any of the Colorado-based brewers’ many varieties of beer, such as the classic Fat Tire or seasonals and specials like 1554 Black Lager or Carnie Blood Orange Saison.
There’ll be plenty of tunes from the likes of The Reals and Reggie Watts, as well as entertainment from folks like The Handsome Little Devils.
May 28, 2014
Need an excuse to have a martini? It’s Ian Fleming’s birthday on Wednesday, so hoist one to the creator of Bond, James Bond.
Some of the better places to indulge? Wisdom cocktail parlour at 1432 Pennsylvania Ave. SE is arguably your best best on Capitol Hill, although you can expect proprietor Erik Holzherr, the Gintender, to speak up in favor of gin, as opposed to Mr. Bond’s preference for vodka martinis.
Washington’s good enough to be a town replete with good cocktail places. If you’re not on the Hill, may we suggest the Passenger (1021 Seventh St. NW), Round Robin (1401 Pennsylvania Ave. NW) or the Gibson (2009 14th St. NW)?
If Bond’s not your thing, just remember that Fleming is the man who also gave us “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.”
May 9, 2014
Bummed about missing out on the barley- and hops-fueled bacchanal taking over the National Building Museum this weekend?
So is Brewery Ommegang.
Rather than fret about all the fun they won’t be having at the annual SAVOR beer blowout, the powers that be behind the New York-based craft brewery have decided to host their own beer-drenched shindig at Hierarchy (1841 Columbia Road NW).
A suggested $10 donation, which benefits DC Central Kitchen, gets one in the door and entitles guests to a custom tasting glass and commemorative gift.
Organizers insist the “Black Sheep” event, which is scheduled to roll from Saturday night right into Sunday (8 p.m. to 1 a.m.), is meant to complement, not supplant, the Brewers Association-led festivities taking place across town.
The splintering was apparently predicated by a SAVOR ban on having too many interrelated breweries — Ommegang’s pals from Kansas City-based Boulevard Brewing Company got the nod this year — under the same roof during the weekend drinkathon.
“Rather than go out like a lamb we are going to have a bit of fun and create what should be a fantastic experience of beer, food, art, music with a good cause to boot — and the event is open to all: SAVOR attendees, local DC food-and-beer lovers and anyone else who wants to join us,” Bill Wetmore, Ommegang’s director of marketing suggested in a release.
Meanwhile, Haute Saison Catering owner Jan Van Haute and Ommegang executive chef Evan Brown are scheduled to whip up special lamb dishes to be paired with the crew’s homespun brews. And members of DC’s Fans of Lamb should be on hand to share cooking secrets and cherished lamb recipes.
Worried about being too smashed to trek from SAVOR to Adams Morgan? Team Ommegang plans to run shuttle buses from there to them every half hour beginning at 10 p.m. (until 11:30 p.m.) to ensure beer lovers can enjoy the best of both worlds.