OMG: IPAs in DC...

See what I did there?  Just trying to be clever (JTTBC).  I recently found myself in our nation's capital to catch a performance of Follies at the Kennedy Center.  (See it if you can... fantastic!)  And of course I decided to take advantage of my days in town to hit up a couplethree fine establishments that feature the craft beer.

Pizza Paradiso at Dupont Circle.Pizzeria Paradiso is a small family friendly chain with three DC area locations: Georgetown, Dupont Circle (above), and Old Town Alexandria, VA (below).  The dining is super fine.  Woodfired pizzas, fresh salads, grilled paninis.  Everything I tasted was incredible.  And in the craft beer department, each location features their own extensive tap and bottle list (and cask engine).  The rotating tap selection is heavy on great American stuff (Dogfish Head, Founders, Rogue, and many new and up-and-coming breweries) peppered with some fab international stuff.  (The Brewdog Paradox Smokehead on cask at the time was powerful and incredibly scotchy.  Scotchy scotchy scotch.)  They attempt to be consistent with the bottle list, but a small chalkboard lists the "off-menu" bottles on hand.  The Paradiso folks are doin' it up right.  Get thee hither.  Anon.

Pizza Paradiso in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia.At the end of last year, DC lost a 50 year veteran in the beer bar pantheon and craft bar pioneer... The Brickskeller.  The neighborhood dive featured a crazy rotating tap list and a bottle list of 1500 (WHAT??).  Some will say that the service and experience had been going downhill for a while, and while the bottle list was astonishingly extensive, roughly only half of the bottles listed were typically in stock.  The long-time owners sold the place.  The end?  Nope.  I'm happy to say the place is back in business as The Bier Baron.  Other than a welcome bathroom renovation, a menu change, and a much more manageable (but still impressive) bottle list (500ish), it's pretty much the same.  Of course, some of the change seems to be too much for some of the old timers.  But others are welcoming the breath of fresh air blowing through the musty place.  Whatever side you lean towards, give 'em a shot.  They have an amazing selection of craft and international beers (tempered with a bunch of those macrobrew things).  The food heavily favors a pub grub bent.  I had the Baron Burger which was adorned with bacon, salami, sharp cheese, and an entire produce section on the side.  Tasty!  So, DC folks and those passing through... get thee to Bier Baron and give it a shot.  There's a lotta crafty history in those walls.

Bier Baron near Dupont Circle.And that's what's HOPpenin'.  Cheers, all!