Fresh, Local Beer

It seems everyone and their mother is eating fresh, local these days. Just last week my grandmom asked me what the effect of organics is on global warning. Funny, but admirable nonetheless. Whether you buy into the benefits of locavorism or not, there is no denying that the fruits of the land taste better, if only because you’re extending your almighty dollar to support a homegrown business. And that’s a nice thing. In this town, the fresh, local philosophy extends easily from eating to drinking. Witness our cool gastropubs and craft beer brewers, multiplying like rabbits in heat.

Here’s the skinny on some tri-state beer artisans; the list is by no means exhaustive, but it’s a good intro to the sudsy realm of craft brewing. The next time you belly up to the bar, try ordering one of these instead of a Coors Light.

Dogfish Head
The Facts
Based in Milton, Del., Dogfish Head opened in 1995, focusing on experimental beers with unusual ingredients. They also operate a restaurant, bar and microdistillery in Rehoboth Beach.
The Signature
60 Minute IPA, an approachable IPA with lots of herbal and citrusy notes. 60 Minute refers to the amount of time the hops–Amarillo, Warrior and a mystery variety–are boiled; the longer the boil, the more bitter the beer.
The Surprise
Raison d’Etre, a spicy mahogany ale brewed with green raisins that’s complex without being pretentious. Drink it in a wine goblet, without shame.
The Bar
Get the twangy, effervescent Festina Peche on tap while it lasts (as well as Raison d’Etre in bottle) at the South Philadelphia Taproom, or mussels steamed in the 60 Minute IPA with coconut and green curry at 1601 Café.

Tröegs

The Facts
The brainchild of brothers Chris and John Trogner, this Harrisburg, Pa., brewery opened in 1997 and was inspired by Chris’s years in living in craft beer heaven Boulder, Co., and John’s happy hours spend at Dock Street after selling real estate in Philly.
The Signature
Tröegs Pale Ale, a flowery, honey-golden ale made with Cascade and Liberty hops, Pilsner and Crystal malts.
The Surprise
Mad Elf Holiday Ale, a spicy and fruity Christmastime blend that’ll warm you up like It’s a Wonderful Life.
The Bar
Look for the rich Toregenator Double Bock at the gastropub cousins, Standard Tap in Northern Liberties and Johnny Brenda’s in Fishtown.

Victory
The Facts
The brewery that put Downingtown, Pa., on the beer-drinker’s map, Victory opened in 1996, taking up shop in the old Pepperidge Farm factory. After a recent expansion, the German-trained brewers have the capacity to roll out 100,000 barrels per year.
The Signature
Golden Monkey, a Belgian-style sparkler that’s rich enough for grilled salmon and light enough for an après-beach refresher. Made with German malt and Belgian yeast, this rambunctious 9.5%-abv primate won the silver medal at the 2004 London International Beer Competition and the gold medal at the 2003 LA County Fair.
The Surprise
Moonglow Wiezenbock, a seasonal brew available September through October that celebrates the Bavarian harvest with a range of fruit tones and a yeasty afterglow.
The Bar
Northeast’s Esquire-approved Grey Lodge Pub offers Golden Monkey and potent, peppery HopDevil IPA in bottles. Look for the Sunset Dunkelweizen on the taps in the coming weeks.

Yuengling
The Facts
Established in Pottsville, Pa., by David G. Yuengling as Eagle Brewery (see the soaring eagle on the label) in 1929, Yuengling claims the title of America’s oldest brewery. As a family owned and operated brewer for three generations, Yuengling’s current president introduced Traditional Amber Lager in 1987, making it the company’s instant flagship and also moved the majority of production down to a plant in Tampa in 1999.
The Signature
Traditional Amber Lager, affectionately known to us simply as lager, as if there could ever be another to match this surprisingly refreshing, medium-bodied classic in the green glass bottle.
The Surprise
Yuengling Light Lager, a non-watery calorie-saver that does its daddy proud.
The Bar
From white-cloth restaurants to down-and-dirty dives, anywhere and everywhere in the tri-state area serves Lager. Also widely available along the East Coast from New York to Florida.

AroundPhilly Staff

When we're not browsing Reddit or preparing TPS reports, the Aroundphilly.com staff likes to bring you freshly-sliced internets for your viewing pleasure. If you have an idea for an article or really awesome photos of Nabi, send us an email at editorial@aycmedia.com.

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