Lew Bryson took me to to a couple of places last night. A chance for me to try some American beers in their natural habitat.
First stop was a brewery. Defiant brewing. Not a brewpub, but, like Het Ij in Amsterdam, a brewery with a bar attached. Come to think of it, more like a brewery with a counter stuck in front of the fermenters. Right down my street.
We didn't have long to sample, arriving just an hour before closing. I kicked off with a Porter. Fairly pleasant and pretty drinkable.
Beer number two was described by the barmaid as "an English Ale with ammarillo hops". It sounded like just the sort of monstrosity I regularly sound off about. It turned out to be surprisingly mild. I'd been looking forward to having my tastebuds stripped.
There was still time for a Stout before we were kicked out. The next bar we tried was closed. Frustrating, as I spotted two handpumps on the bar. So we headed on to the Railroad Cafe. That was open, thankfully. It's a cosy, old-fashioned place. With a small range of craft beers. When Lew told me Railbender (from Erie Brewing) was definitely not a session beer, my choice was made. It was sweetish and a bit chewy. Where were they hiding all the hop bombs? All the beers I'd tried were, well, quite mild. Not quite Mild, but quite mild.
We caught the last five minutes of the Superbowl. I say the last five minutes. That was five minutes playing time. Which equated to 45 minutes elapsed time. The Pittsburgh Steelers won with sconds to go, much to the relief of Lew and most of the other customers.
Today has been much quieter. Just a couple of Boston Lagers with dinner. And maybe some of the bourbon Lew gave me as a nightcap.
179 Union Avenue,
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