Editor’s Note: This sponsored column is written by Nick Anderson, beermonger at Arrowine (4508 Lee Highway)
I hope everyone had an enjoyable New Year’s Eve. My wife and I celebrated with a small group of friends and while a good number of Champagne bottles were consumed, I was encouraged to see the quality of brews brought over by friends who aren’t necessarily what you’d call beer geeks. It’s always fun to talk to those folks who are just discovering a love for beer and share in their journey just a little.
Being someone who doesn’t make resolutions, I can’t exactly write a column about what I’m resolved to do this year beer-wise. My wife suggested writing about the beers I’m looking forward to the most this year, but the unpredictable nature of both the schedule of special releases and the emergence of new breweries in the market makes that impossible.
Not to go ‘behind the curtain,’ but most weeks I’m tweaking orders and my section of Arrowine’s newsletter until literally the last minute as I’m finding out about new releases and re-organizing my Saturday tastings. Instead, here are some broader things I’m looking forward to in 2013:
Emerging stars: 2012 was a huge year for breweries new to the Virginia market. From the more everyday breakthroughs of Maui Brewing and Great Lakes to the esoteric wonder of BFM, and Italy’s LoverBeer, there seemed to be great new beers popping up every week. BFM in particular seemed to just explode as more of the Swiss brewery’s offerings hit shelves. I’m also looking forward to seeing what we get from Maine Brewing; the young brewery’s move into a new facility this spring should translate to more great beer for us here in Virginia.
Gypsy brewing comes of age: The great variety of beers from Mikkeller established a template for others to follow, and 2013 is poised to be the year “gypsy brewers” breakthrough to the mainstream in a big way. We’ll be experiencing a greater availability of Evil Twin brews in 2013, and the great Brian Strumke of Stillwater Artisanal Ales was recently featured in a New York Times piece on brewers using Brettanomyces yeast. The sheer spectrum of styles and recipes made by gypsy brewers nearly ensures that there will be a beer for everyone within their lines, and the ‘celebrity chef’ aspect of brewer fandom gives beer geeks everywhere a constant source of debate and conversation.
The rise of local beer: I couldn’t ignore the boom in the amount of local/regional beer sales and availability last year. Not only is Port City a go-to everyday brand for many of my customers, but Devils Backbone and Blue Mountain beers have become items I must have in stock every week. DC Brau is still doing great work and growing (even if it’s not always readily available), and Maryland’s Flying Dog and DuClaw breweries are making noise. Look for more local beers on retail shelves and on tap this year.
The Old Bike Shop, located at 2647 N. Pershing Drive, specializes in vintage and refurbished bikes and bike parts. Owner Larry Behery, a former car mechanic and carpenter, says there was an unmet need for a used bike store in Arlington.
“There are a lot of shops in the area, but they serve a higher-end clientele — someone who’s already into bikes, already into racing, someone who’s into spending a couple of thousand dollars on a bike,” he said. “But there was nobody really just being a liaison for the beginner,” for people who “need something inexpensive to ride to the Metro… something solid and something that’s not stolen or broken off of Craigslist. ”
Behery and a business partner have been selling used bikes at the Courthouse flea market on Saturdays and at the Georgetown flea market on Sundays. Behrey, who started out collecting old bikes and bike paraphernalia before deciding to sell them as a side business, said he buys his bikes at auctions and from charities that receive bike donations. Before the shop opened, he fixed them up in a garage outside his Springfield home.
Business was good enough at the flea markets that at one point last year Behery decided to go all-in and open a stand-alone store.
“It ended up kinda snowballing and increasing in demand… and finally it got to the point where there were enough [customers] to justify doing something like this and actually having a shop,” he said. “I couldn’t not take advantage of that opportunity.”
Behery says he still plans to sell bikes at the Courthouse market but is planning to discontinue his visits to the Georgetown market. He says he thinks the quality of the bikes at his small shop will help him compete against nearby higher-end bike stores and the Wal-Marts of the world that sell cheaply-made budget bikes.
“We made a lot of really good stuff back in the day that can’t be produced any more — recognizing that there was a need for good quality bikes that were inexpensive,” he said.
The Old Bike Shop is open from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Sunday. The store is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
In addition to bikes and bike parts like locks and tires, the Old Bike Shop will offer bike repair services.
The auditions will take place at the mall from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Previously only open to women, this latest round of tryouts are open to both men and women, between the ages of 18 and 27. A list of eligibility requirements and a required 100+ question application are both available via the DC50 website.
The auditions will be followed by a private screening for the new show The Carrie Diaries, a “prequel” to the hit HBO show Sex and the City. The screening will take place at 5:00 p.m.; interested viewers must register online.
The new Tutti Frutti store is located in Pentagon City on the 1300 block of S. Fern Street, near the U.S. Post Office and Epic Smokehouse. The store is the second Tutti Frutti in Arlington, after a location at 2439 N. Harrison Street, in the Lee Harrison Shops.
“I feel very confident in the product,” owner Geoff Trout told ARLnow.com. “I don’t think Pentagon Row is close enough.”
Tutti Frutti serves dairy- and gluten-free, soy-based frozen yogurt made with no artificial sweeteners. The stores typically have a rotating menu of flavors and 35 to 40 fruit and candy topping options.
A sign in the window says the store is “now hiring.”
Twenty-one Arlington County Police Department recruits graduated from Northern Virginia’s regional police academy late last month.
A graduation ceremony for the recruits — 17 men and 4 women — was held at George Mason University’s Center for the Arts. The recruits will now be required to participate in 12 additional weeks of field training before becoming fulling certified by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services.
Arlington’s next police academy class is expected to be much smaller, we’re told.
Legislators Holding Public Meeting Tonight — Arlington County’s delegation to the Virginia General Assembly will hold their annual public legislative hearing tonight (Friday). The public is invited to address the delegation at the meeting, which starts at 6:00 p.m. at the Arlington County Board room on the third floor of 2100 Clarendon Blvd. The delegation includes three state Senators and four members of the House of Delegates. [Arlington County]
Changes to ART 42 Schedule — Minor schedule changes to the ART 42 bus route will take effect starting Monday, Jan. 7. The changes in scheduled arrival times are designed to “improve on-time performance.” [Arlington Transit]
Camel to Visit Arlington Church — A live camel will be visiting an Arlington church this weekend in celebration of Epiphany. Chewy the Camel is scheduled to show up at the Church of the Covenant (2666 Military Road) around 10:00 a.m. on Sunday, Jan. 6, and the public is invited to the event. “Join everyone that morning at 10:45 a.m. for a celebration and parade, as well as the Spanish and English telling of the Wise Men’s visit, accompanied by goodies and crafts for children in Fellowship Hall,” the church said on its website. [Church of the Covenant]
Flickr pool photo by Ddimick