Archive for the ‘Beer travel’ tag

2015 Belgian Beer Fest at Max’s Taphouse – by a Friend of BLC


Beer at 2015 Max's Taphouse Belgian Beer Fest

This Valentine’s Day weekend Belgian Beer aficionados descended on Max’s Taphouse in Baltimore for their annual Belgian Beer fest. This is the 11th year for the event and my wife and I decided to make the pilgrimage for an afternoon of some serious Belgian selections. In addition, it was the 5th year anniversary of Stillwater Brewery, so there was a healthy selection of some of their offerings for the all saison lovers out there. When we arrived at 10:30 am there was already a line down the sidewalk in anticipation of the 11:00 o’clock opening. Since it felt like arctic temperatures outside we were very thankful that the good people at Max’s had the foresight to set up heaters along the side walk–apparently a line prior to opening is something they’re used to. While on line we met people from Chicago, Italy, the Bronx, and San Francisco, a telling sign of the draw this event has. keep reading...

Scrapple and Beer – Our Best of Baltimore

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We recently paid a visit to Baltimore for the second time in the last few years. The first was to see a baseball game and go on a The Wire inspired tour. Well, it wasn’t so much a tour as it was us making a few wrong turns out of our hotel and seeing terrified cops on every street corner. But among the crabs, crack houses (just kidding…) and coastline we also found a ridiculous amount of craft beer. Though the city of Baltimore doesn’t really have any major breweries, it is full of unassuming looking bars that boast some of the more impressive tap lists we have ever run into. So when we saw that Neutral Milk Hotel was touring and playing shows in both Brooklyn and Baltimore, we decided to roll the dice and go to the Charm City stop for a weekend indie rock and beer extravaganza.

Like we said, Baltimore is full of awesome bars and at the top of the list is Max’s Taphouse. Max’s doesn’t look like anything special on the inside, with a bit of a “bro bar” vibe,  until you notice the 100+ taps along the wall. And just in case there is nothing to your liking on tap, they have a bottle menu that is the size of a small novel. We were able to sample a few rarities here and even though we were only in the area for a short amount of time we made three or four trips to Max’s. Oh, and it is located in the heart of Fell’s Point which means it is walking distance from Stuggy’s; the spot where we were able to obtain a crab mac and cheese hot dog after perhaps one too many The Bruery Smoking Wood’s. And by we, we mean Alicia. Also nearby is the Thames Street Oyster House which is a great place for a bit of a classier seafood dinner. If you can, sit upstairs and try the clam cakes which are basically delicious hush puppies that come in their own little paper bag. Or get wild with it and sample the blood clams from the raw bar. Yes, they are exactly what they sound like. On the other end of the spectrum is Bad Decisions, a bar we stumbled upon before noon on a Monday. A bar that has changed hands many times, the main attraction here is their extensive liquor selection. Seriously, it was the most liquor we have ever seen in a bar. Due to our off time visit, we were the only patrons so we had the pleasure of chatting with the owner who was eager to present us his handwritten menu which read more like a drink journal. After intently studying it we finally just said, “make us something good,” and we were not disappointed. keep reading...

Written by A+K

August 4th, 2014 at 10:36 am

Pilsner – Hakone Beer (2013)



BLC Says:
This pilsner from Hakone Beer was part of a three pack we picked up on our trip to Japan last winter. Also included was a stout and red ale, which we have since drank, enjoyed and reviewed so look for those in the future. As the picture would indicate (notice the severe lack of snow EVERYWHERE), we only held on to this beer for a few months before tasting it over the summer. The can/bottle hybrid preserved the beers well, though we do think the pilsner may have been a bit better if we opened it sooner. But anyway, onto the beer. keep reading...

Written by A+K

February 24th, 2014 at 8:38 am

Home from Germany with the Best Kind of Souvenirs (Hint: it’s Beer)



So our Christmacation through Germany is over. We’re back home on Long Island and thoughts of liverwurst, glühwein and gnomes sneaking about at night dance in our heads. Cologne and Düsseldorf were packed with more sights and delicious delights then we had bargained for. Both of us will always remember our trip fondly, from our memories and the fun treats we brought back.

Our small carry on suitcases which have been our travel companions through all of our journeys have had many delicious beers carefully stowed within them and this return trip from Deutschland was no different. We were able to fit many Kölsch and Altbiers in our two cases wrapping them in clothes and packing everything in tightly. This time we even brought along ziplock bags to place the bottles in before storing them. Of the many breweries we visited we decided that we’d pick our three favorites in each city and bring back two beers from each one. That lead to the following coming home to Long Island with us. keep reading...

Written by A+K

December 23rd, 2013 at 1:00 pm

Beer Loves Company in Dusseldorf, Germany!


Düsseldorf: home of Christmas markets, potato pancakes and Altbier. Düseldorf is home to nine brewpubs that all produce Altbier on site and we were able to visit a good chunk of them in just under three days (sounds like a tough job right?).

Geeky beer side note: Altbier came about in 1838 when the Schümacher brewery needed a name to distinguish their top fermenting beer from the other bottom fermenting beers being produced. Alt is typically a dark copper color with some fruity esters accenting the malty, hoppy backbone. As with the Kölsch in Cologne each Alt brewery (or brauerei in German) falls somewhere along the spectrum. We both found Altbier to be a very tasty and highly drinkable style. We would welcome craft brewers here at home to try their hand at producing this “old style” brew. keep reading...

Written by A+K

December 18th, 2013 at 2:50 pm