Once again DC reigned resplendid in its late spring trappings on this perfect Friday evening. The bugs were still at bay; mosquitos just a pesky, itchy memory from last summer, and gnats clustered in their dervish cloud, but only in our minds. Each Friday seems to find just a touch more heat, like dialing the radiator one-sixteenth turn to the right. And we're all fine with this, sloughing off winter's hibRRRRnation and strumming into summer sunsets on Dog Hill.
This evening we found Salvation---right there on the shelves of Chevy Chase Wine and Liquor---and it was bottled up and ready for reaction among the gathered gourmands of fine brew. Avery's Salvation, Belgian golden ale style beer, hails from Colorado and suffers not the least from a trip east over appalachians and blue ridge right here to Ft. Reno. All takers agreed, even the non-belgian drinkers in the crowd, that this one hits the mark---smooth, warm and not overly-sweet. There is definitely some substance to this golden ale, and leaves us glad that something golden and decent can come from Colorado, even if not "frost-brewed".
Green Flash made a second appearance on the hill, going big this time. John Barleycorn must die, some decree, but not this barleywine from Green Flash. This one hits hard but velvety, an excellent specimen and less elusive than Big Foot.
The jumbled mess we are, next appeared Stone's Russian Imperial Stout. Hey, we try to give thought to the order of the night, but new entrants arrive every fifteen minutes, accompanied by their dogs and people. Stone makes fabulous beers we all agreed, nearly in unison. This was no exception, and our resident stout-avoidant even confessed "it was growing on him" as it warmed in his glass.
Colorado represented again, in the form of Breckenridge Brewery's Double-Hopped IPA, batch # 471. This was a quick-hitter 12oz and set the stage for another dark entrant, as we continued our weeble-wobble method of weaving stouts , pale ales and anything else with barley and hops into the mix.
Smuttynose Imperial Stout reigned large and roasty, a dry finish like the day itself, lazing in the glasses like our crowd lolling on the hill, recapturing sanity after the rush of the work week. What a great windup to another well-pitched shindig.