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The Brickskeller, The World's Largest Beer List (?) at 22nd and P Street, West Dupont - Closed


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shogun said:
It'll be in the "We pretty much have to" section of the menu.  :lol:   Seen bottles of Miller go by at the Brick even.  It is true what they say: You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink decent beer.

This is very exciting, though.

I'm really excited for this. It'll actually give me a reason to venture into G'town for a night out.

I don't understand the people who order macros at the Brick, either, but I would guess that they sell more of that than anything else. It's not uncommon to walk by a table and spy a sea of Miller/Bud/Yuengling/Corona empties; amidst this mess there will be one guy with a bunch of Belgians and English vintage ales in front of him. Hmm, which one of them said earlier that night, "Hey, guys, I have an idea: lets head on over to the Brickskeller!" :huh:

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Hey man sometimes a cold Miller lite is all I want and you absolutly cannot beat the decor of the Brick :lol:

Years ago, I took a somewhat fussy Austrian colleague down there and we were sitting at the bar by the stairs with the air conditioner occasionally dripping on our heads and rats running over our feet and he was all like "Ja, dis sucks, we should go" and then these two cool girls came in and we started talking and buying rounds and stuff and now he's married to one of them and they live in Frankfurt and have a son called Maximilian. True story. Brick of destiny, never doubt it!*

*Advisory: This is off topic.

Edited by Stretch
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My UNCLE got thrown out of the place for pee'ing on the table that his friend lit on fire. . . he's was being helpfull

Not Kidding!

Ya gotta love that place

Was it THAT uncle?

If so, then we have a scandal here. And we need to get a busload of people out to Aster ASAP.

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One of my friends set a policy that no beer from North America is to be drunk at the Brickskellar, with the exception that if you share a name with the beer, it doesn't matter where it comes from.

So I can drink McHenry Ale (from Maryland) and certain lastnamed members of the party can drink Miller (from hell). And I suppose anybody named Corona or Molson would also be allowed to indulge.

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Back in the day, I hit the Brickskeller many, many times. Often, one of the ways I chose the next beer to try was to pick a page at random and then close my eyes and let my finger drop on the name of a beer on the list.

Did they ever actually have the beer that you selected? If so, you were luckier in your experiences than myself....

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Back in the day, I hit the Brickskeller many, many times. Often, one of the ways I chose the next beer to try was to pick a page at random and then close my eyes and let my finger drop on the name of a beer on the list.

As part of a big birthday celebration week a couple years back I came up with the "Beers From a Hat" game at the Brick. I printed out little slips of paper with the names of the countries represented on the Brick's list. For each round everybody at the table draws a piece of paper and has to select a beer from that country. The twist: if your server comes back and says that they are out of the beer you chose you get to steal somebody else's beer and they go back to the hat. It tends to fizzle out after 3-4 rounds, but it's always fun while it lasts. Kind of forcibly expands (or insults) your beer horizons. To date I am inexplicably 5-for-5 with El Salvador; unfortunately they've always had Suprema in stock :angry:

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Recipe for success at Brickskellar: 1. Ask which types of Allagash they have. 2. Order 2 or 3 different bottles (750ml) 3. Enjoy with friends 4. Repeat

They also have this garlic-y bread that sometimes comes on the cheese platter (ask for it), that's amazing. I like the pierogies, too (get em fried)

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For the record, the list at Delirium Cafe in Brussels is bigger.

And both of them are damn near impossible to navigate.

ETA: the Bricks' 50th anniversary is coming up this Sunday, October 7, and Dave is starting to pour a whole bunch of old kegs. Some seriously interesting stuff on the list. The ones I'd really like to get a pint around are bolded:

ALLAGASH Curieux, Four

ANCHOR Old Foghorn 01, 02, 04

ANCHOR Xmas 01, 04, 05

BELL’S Hopslam, Batch 8000

CLIPPER CITY Hang Ten, Holy Sheets

DOGFISH Burton Baton 06, Chateau Jiahu

DOGFISH HEAD Raison d'eXtra 05, 06

DOGFISH World Wide Stout 05, 06

DOGFISH HEAD 120 Minute IPA 06

GREAT DIVIDE Old Ruffian Barleywine

HE'BREW Genesis 10:10, Lenny Bruce R.I.P.A.

JW LEE Harvest Ale (regular keg)

JW LEE Oak Barrel Vintage Harvest Ale 1999 in real oak cask

PORT BREWING Old Viscosity

PORT BREWING Older Viscosity

ROGUE Hop Heaven

RUSSIAN RIVER Perdition 05

RUSSIAN RIVER Temptation 05

SAMICHLAUS 04

SIERRA NEVADA Bigfoot 01, 05

STONE 11th Anniversary

STONE Double Bastard

STONE Oak Aged Arrogant Bastard

VICTORY Old Horizontal 03, 04

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ETA: the Bricks' 50th anniversary is coming up this Sunday, October 7, and Dave is starting to pour a whole bunch of old kegs. Some seriously interesting stuff on the list. The ones I'd really like to get a pint around are bolded:

I'm relatively ignorant about this, so bear with me here ... When you say "old kegs," do you mean Brickskeller has been in possession of them and aged them? If so, do storage conditions matter? If so, how are their storage conditions? Is this really worth a visit? Do tell, do tell, imbibing minds want to know ...

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I'm relatively ignorant about this, so bear with me here ... When you say "old kegs," do you mean Brickskeller has been in possession of them and aged them? If so, do storage conditions matter? If so, how are their storage conditions? Is this really worth a visit? Do tell, do tell, imbibing minds want to know ...
The email I got from Dave's skeller email list says:
Outrageous beers I’ve been stashing in the cold box under tons of stacks of vintage beer cases for a longlong time! I can promise you we’ll have several heretofore though extinct gems in bottle and keg as well as a whole rack of weirdo’s I’ve been trying to hide from the staff! When I can dig my way to them, we’ll print out table cards of the taps and cases offered almost that soon I promise.....Here is the nearly accurate list of kegs fighting for taps from our in house aged keg cold storage:

The wording seems to indicate that they've all been hiding out in the upstairs walk-in cooler, and although I don't remember seeing that many kegs hiding back in that room, it's entirely possible. Storage conditions do matter with aged kegs, especially depending on whether the beer is refermented in the keg or not (and I have no idea which of these are keg-conditioned, but it's not a terribly common practice, so most are probably force carbonated). If, in fact, they have all been in the walk-in the entire time he's had them, most of them will be very well-aged, regardless. Cellar temp would be better for most of them, but they will still develop in the full-cold just fine. However, if any of them were out of the cooler for a significant amount of time (weeks, months, etc) and happened to also not be keg-conditioned, some of the beers may have suffered. Impossible to know for sure, but I actually think the storage conditions might have been ok. In short (as with any night at the Brickskeller) there may be some misses, but there will almost certainly be some very good stuff on tap at some point as the kegs go rolling by.

Availability seems like a total crapshoot, so I might just start stopping by every two or three days to see what's kicked and what's up next. Also, to see how much he's charging for them :blink:

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I'm relatively ignorant about this, so bear with me here ... When you say "old kegs," do you mean Brickskeller has been in possession of them and aged them? If so, do storage conditions matter? If so, how are their storage conditions? Is this really worth a visit? Do tell, do tell, imbibing minds want to know ...

big (i.e. high alcohol as well as "big" flavored") beers, unpasteurized and unfiltered (so the yeast can still work, scavenging the flavor-ruining oxygen) are best for this.

Even if force-carbonated entirely or partially [the alternative to "force carbonating" (which involves chilling down to near freezing and forcing CO2 under pressure into the beer) is priming with a little sugar or unfermented wort ("gyle") at bottling or kegging time; the yeast eats the sugar and produces CO2 which in the closed container is absorbed into the beer, so-called "natural carbonation" or "bottle (or keg) conditioning"], unpasteurized and unfiltered beers will contain enough residual yeast so that the deadly oxidation can be kept at bay...

Having said that, it is oxidation that can lead to the flavor some perceive as "port wine" or "sherry" and it is a prized flavor indeed. Within limits.

Aging also reduces/mellows hop flavor, aroma, and even bitterness. I don't think there's any reason to age, say, a hoppy IPA that comes in at 5-6% alcohol, or a best bitter, but an english or american barleywine, or an imperial IPA, maybe a russian imperial stout or baltic porter---very nice. Big lagers too, doppelbocks for example...and the big Belgians, heaven.

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I managed to stop by last night, and got a glass of Bigfoot '01 (very good, still has its hop edge somehow), then managed to snag a glass each from the bottles of New Glarus Belgian Red (delicious) and Alesmith Speedway Stout '02 (easily the best of the night. just phenomenal, like drinking a boozy espresso that has every beer aspect that I love) that were floating around. The Schlafly barleywine wasn't very good, and the Port Santa's Little Helper was completely eclipsed by the Speedway. The remaining kegs are going to be on rotation on a tap or two for the rest of the year, so if you have your eye on something, it may be put on at some point, but I don't know of any method to the schedule. It may be a "let's randomly drop in to the brickskeller" sort of fall for me.

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FYI, DC Beer is reporting that the Brick will be closing on 12/18/10. I had heard from multiple people who talked to Dave in the last few months that he was looking for a buyer, and the rumor is that the sale is just for the building--that he'll keep the Brickskeller name, and possibly move it to RFD.

@dcbeer tweet

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Hiring people without experience isn't a problem.  If management is any good at all, they can train anybody how to carry a tray or take orders or learn about product; it is far harder to train people to smile, give a shit or finish a shift as strong as they started.  I've worked with/hired/employed more than a handful of brilliant folks from there who were and are real pros - including Greg Engert (NRG) and Nahem Simon (Jack Rose).  I also interacted with plenty of others who couldn't have been any less interested.  IMHO, it is always the person, not the experience that matters and hiring  for the quality of the person is a reflection of management.  Hiring for experience is lazy.

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