Editor’s Note: This sponsored column is written by Nick Anderson, beermonger at Arrowine (4508 Lee Highway)
If I may toot the horn of the craft beer movement a bit: there’s a camaraderie and sense of community amongst the beer geeks, from the drinkers to the brewers and everyone in-between, that is truly unique. Competitions are almost always healthy, entered with the knowledge that at the end of the day, we’re all going to sit down and enjoy a couple cold ones regardless of the outcome. The most notable result of this brother/sisterhood is the collaboration beer, where two or more breweries get together and see what happens when ideas starting being bandied about.
Collaborative wines or liquors are almost unheard of, and while over the years the number of ‘collab’ beers has grown to the point of parody I still believe that their spirit exhibits the best of beer culture. More often than not, collaborations are once-per-year or one-time-only deals, but let me give you a rundown of some that you should be able to find right now without going too far out of your way:
Collaboration Not Litigation Ale (Avery/Russian River): Both Colorado’s Avery Brewing Company and California’s Russian River Brewing Company make Belgian-styled beers named Salvation. It would have been easy for the two to sue the hell out of each other for the name and moved on, but that’s not what they did. What they did was get together, have some beers, and decide to blend the two Salvations together into a new, third beer. This was the first collaboration that I can remember having, and its story became a tenet of my own beer geekdom as it related to openness and not thinking territorially. Russian River will be coming up again very soon in this column.
Land Ho! (Heavy Seas/Devil’s Backbone): Virginia and Maryland working together. Baltimore’s Heavy Seas is a fixture in the region’s craft beer scene, where Lexington’s Devil’s Backbone is only starting to grow its name in the D.C. area, though it’s doing that quickly. This joint effort is a “Black Pils”, with all of the clean, grassy, refreshing feel of an old-school Pilsner with enough malt to color it black and add a touch of chocolate and caramel.
Sobrehumano Palena’ole (Maui/Jolly Pumpkin): A favorite of mine from SAVOR that just arrived recently in Virginia, Sobrehumano is the work of the gang at Maui Brewing Company with Michigan’s Jolly Pumpkin Artisanal Ales. Using tart cherries from Michigan and Hawaiian passion fruit, this Amber Ale is refreshing, complex, and bracing all at once.
BRUX (Sierra Nevada/Russian River): Told you Russian River was coming up again. This one, if it isn’t available by the time you read this, will be in the area next week. Working with the legendary Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, Russian River brings the Belgian influence to BRUX with a re-fermentation of this Pale Ale with Brettanomyces yeast, giving it subtle yet funky notes of spice and tropical fruits. BRUX won’t last long, so if you’ve enjoyed Wild Ales don’t miss out.
Saison du BUFF (Stone/Dogfish Head/Victory): When three of the biggest and baddest craft breweries in the U.S. got together a few years back and decided to make a beer together, most of us were expecting some kind of hop-based ordinance that would be inaccessible to mere mortals. Instead, we got Saison du BUFF; a subtle, refined, easy-drinking take on the Belgian style using the full Scarborough Fair (parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme). The herbs come through almost like a grassy hop character in the brew, which is made at each brewery in turn during years when it’s released. Stone’s version is just arriving, but it should still be feasible to track down the Victory and Dogfish Head-made ones too.
Until next time.
Nick Anderson maintains a blog at www.beermonger.net, and can be found on Twitter at @The_Beermonger. Sign up for Arrowine’s money saving email offers and free wine and beer tastings at www.arrowine.com/mailing-list-signup.aspx. The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ARLnow.com.
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Good Friday evening, Arlington. Let’s take a look back at today’s stories and a look forward to tomorrow’s event calendar. 🕗 News recap The following articles were published earlier today…
Children’s Weekday Program (CWP) is a non-profit preschool for children 16 months and older. Rooted in a play-based philosophy, we focus on developing a love of learning and exploration, cooperation, empathy, and independence.
Located in North Arlington at 2666 Military Road, CWP offers a flexible parents’ day out and preschool program with options to extend care both before and after school daily. We offer a supportive and inclusive school community for children and parents alike and welcome all families to join our school!
Our caring and experienced educators create opportunities for children to play, learn, and grow in a nurturing environment of child-centered and developmentally appropriate experiences–including enrichment programming such as science and movement.
CWP has been an integral part of the community for over 50 years and last year was recognized by Northern Virginia Magazine for the fourth time as the Best Preschool.
The Potomac Roasting Company is a local micro-roaster specializing in artisan coffee. We precision roast high-quality specialty beans sourced from small farms in Latin America that are owned and operated by women. Your coffee will be roasted the way you want it and delivered fresh.
As two former Peace Corps volunteers who served in Guatemala, we founded Potomac Roasting to pursue our passion for great coffee and purpose-driven work. In addition to ethically sourcing our beans, we also donate a portion of our profits to Laila’s Legacy Animal Rescue, a DC-based nonprofit that finds homes for homeless dogs and cats.
Our current roasts come from prime coffee-producing regions of Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Peru. We will be adding new roasts soon. If you are local, there’s a good chance we can deliver to your door. Look for us at local farmers’ markets beginning this spring. In the meantime, check us out now for better coffee and good karma in a cup. You can use the code Community and save 10%.
Whenever we feel indecisive, it’s usually because different parts of ourselves see things differently and are motivated by different priorities and concerns. In fact, it’s usually the friction between these different “camps” that makes us feel stuck.
We can mediate