This is part of a Beerventure Series from Steph’s March 2014 trip to Washington, DC. See the rest of the series here.
When I saw that the high for the day in Washington, D.C. was going to be 61º on Saturday, I knew that’s where I wanted to spend my day. Enough snow and frigid temperatures already! I’m ready for some sunshine and warmth!
We started our day at DC Brau Brewing Company. As we arrived at the address, which was located in a strip mall, we did not immediately notice the brewery. Rich said, “They look like they’re going to a brewery” as he pointed out a group of people walking down the alley next to the post office. We followed them down the hill, and there it was
DC Brau owners Brandon Skall and Jeff Hancock are both D.C. residents with experience in both brewing and beverage distribution. They saw a need for D.C. to have a beer to call its own. Brandon handles sales duties and the business side of things, while Jeff is the Brewmaster.
Jeff’s brewing experience includes an apprenticeship at Franklin’s Restaurant and Brewery in Hyattsville, Maryland, as well as brewing at Grizzly Peak Brewing and Arbor Brewing companies, both in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and at Flying Dog Brewery in Frederick, Maryland.
As you enter the brewery, everyone is carded. Everyone. Upon showing your ID you are given 4 tickets redeemable for samples. Free tours begin “though the red door,” or you can head directly to one of the two draft stations for your free sampling.
On Saturday, March 8th, DC Brau released cans of The Tradition, a golden ale brewed with D.C. United, the beloved local soccer team.
DC Brau is known for their collaborations, working with breweries such as Bluejacket, The Brewer’s Art, Devil’s Backbone, Epic Brewing, Oliver Breweries, SKA Brewing Company, and Union Craft Brewing. More on a collaboration with Stillwater Artisanal Ales in a bit.
The Tradition is a limited-release D.C. United specific beer, a unique, one-of-a-kind brew, crafted specifically for D.C. United and its fans. The name, “The Tradition” was submitted by Donald Wine II in the D.C. United “Brand the Brew” contest back in May 2013. The beer is now available in cans at the brewery for $10 per 6-pack.
If that wasn’t enough, DC Brau also released “NATAS” on Saturday. The draft-only beer is a collaboration between DC Brau and Stillwater Artisanal Ales. “NATAS” is a Belgian Style Imperial Porter brewed with a traditional high gravity Abbey yeast. The pitch black brew offers aromas of burnt sugar and caramelized fruit. It’s silky smooth with hints of cocoa. The beer is named after Natas Kaupas, a skateboarder from Southern California in the late 80s and early 90s.
Overall, I very much enjoyed the DC Brau brews. The atmosphere at the brewery is laid back, the type of place where you want to hang out for a while a sip samples. Visitors are free to roam around much of the brewery and bring in food from the local food truck outside. Today, it was a pizza truck. There are also free bags of pretzels and chips (including Snyder’s Hot Wing Pretzels, a personal favorite of my DD).
Here’s some exciting news for our local listeners. As of January 2014, cans of DC Brau’s The Corruption, The Public, Penn Quarter Porter, and The Citizen are available in Bucks, Berks, Chester, Delaware, Lehigh, Montgomery, Northampton and Philadelphia counties in Pennsylvania. You can use their Brau Finder to see where else DC Brau beer is sold.
DC Brau Brewing Company
3178-B Bladensburg Rd. NE
Washington, D.C. 20018
Open Saturdays 12 to 4PM
for tours, tastings, and growler fills
The DC Brau brewery is located behind the post office.
You will need to go down the alley and turn right.