Beer of the Burg

Last week, I was blessed to spend 3 days away from work for training. These 3 days entitled me to 2 evenings at one of my favorite hotels, Holiday Inn East in Harrisburg, PA. The highlights of some time in the Burg always include the great beers of this fine Pennsylvania city, notably from Troegs and the Harrisburg location of Lancaster Brewing Company (ABC is a fine brewery, as well). Last week was no different…

On Wednesday, I did dinner at LBC Harrisburg, but not before stopping by Troegs to complain and sample. The complaining was because Troegs had recently decided to pull the beer that introduced me to their fine craft brews, Rugged Trail Nut Brown Ale. While the bartender in the tap room expressed understanding for the nostalgia experienced by me in reference to the ale, he assured me that the replacement, Java Head Stout would not leave me disappointed for long. After a small sample, I no longer had to take his word for it. I also was able to try Scratch Beer #28, a Roggenbeir, which was a style I’d never heard of… apparently, a Roggen is “an uncommon German ale brewed with a portion of rye malt and a weizenbier yeast strain.” Tasty, but not different enough from Dreamweaver Wheat to truly impress. Perhaps I’d have enjoyed it more if I hadn’t just indulged in that scrumptious Java Head… which of course became the beer choice for the six pack I had to buy while there.

After leaving Troegs, I made it up to LBC for dinner. The food was good, especially the crab dip (made with Amish Four Grain Ale, one of the best pale ales in the world as far as I’m concerned). I, however, did forgo my usual beer selection at LBC, the Celtic Rose, to try the Shoo-Fly Porter. I was pleased by all aspects of this American porter. Dark and hearty, sweet and chewy, smooth and clean… it’s all malt, the way I like my porters and stouts! Fantastic.

After a good first night of beer, I made plans with a friend from Harrisburg to head to McGrath’s Pub, his favorite local spot, for some burgers, some beers, and some good company. All three missions were accomplished, the company was great and my bacon cheddar burger was fantastic… the beer, also superb.

Before heading out, I scouted the tap list and found an interesting beer I’d never tried, Coronado Red Devil, an imperial red ale from a California brewery. Served in a large, deep wine glass, much like a brandy snifter in shape, the beer was very big. Strong malt flavor, powerful but not overpowering American hops (perhaps Cascade), and a little alcohol warmth, this is certainly a big, wonderfully full, beer. After this great selection, I wrapped up my night with a Pennsylvania classic… a Yuengling Lager.

All in all, two great nights of beer… heading back in two weeks. Wonder what’s next for me and the beer of the Burg (and beyond, Cali to be exact).

~ by thepaintedman on April 4, 2010.

One Response to “Beer of the Burg”

  1. […] I present to you a few tasting notes on Troegs Java Head Stout (the first bottle of the six pack I bought while in Harrisburg last week). Not a review, nothing formal as of yet, just some […]

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