This weekend's Savor craft beer festival brings brewers and beer fans from across the country to the National Building Museum for two nights of tastings and seminars. But the real fun takes place at local bars the nights leading up to the festival, with happy hours, brewer meet-and-greets and rare-beer events. Every day this week, we'll publish a list of that night's must-do events that don't require RSVPs: Just show up and pay for what you drink.
Monday's event lineup is slow, perfect for easing into the madness of Savor week.
DC Brau and Flying Dog kick off Jack Rose's busy lineup with a hometown tap takeover. Each will pour 10 beers on the rooftop deck of the Adams Morgan bar, with a mix of old favorites and exclusive releases. Because it's Jack Rose, look for beers aged in bourbon barrels, such as Flying Dog's Horn Dog barleywine and the DC Brau/Stillwater collaboration, Natas imperial porter. Doors open at 6, and all 20 beers are $5 each until 9.
Bell's Brewery is the latest brewery to move its flagship beers into cans, as 16-ounce tallboys of Oberon Ale and Two-Hearted Ale will begin hitting stores this week. There's no more fitting place for a launch party than the Red Derby, which sells all of its beer in cans, and the idea of drinking a summery Oberon wheat beer on the rooftop deck sounds pretty inviting. The party starts at 6 and lasts all night. Bells cans sell for $6, and because it's Cinco de Mayo, bartenders are pouring $2 shots of tequila as "palate cleansers."
Savor week involves drinking a lot of strong beer. Might as well tune up your liver at Bier Baron, which is focusing on draft beers around 5 percent ABV or less. Highlights include Smuttynose's new Bouncy House IPA (4.5 percent), Victory Hop Ticket IPA (4.5 percent) and Peak Organic's Fresh Cut dry-hopped pilsner (4.6 percent). Doors open at 4 p.m.