Ballpark Brews: Search for Good Beer

Good Beer?As you saw from my last post Nationals Park has some great over-priced macro brews.  So the question came about: can good beer be found at the stadium? I decided to get to the game early to answer this question by searching for some good beer (if it exists).  Well the first few beer stands I came across were not very stellar with the macro beer lineup of: Miller Lite, MGD, Bud, Bud Light, Bud Lime (for Shintern), etc.  So I continued on around the concourse and came across this stand:

Yes this was considered “good” beer for most people at the stadium with Heineken (and the Light version), Dos Equis (sorry I’m not The Most Interesting Man) and Newcastle.  While these beers do have a lot more flavor than the macro beer lineup, I, the beer snob I’ve grown to be, still consider these to be crap. So I kept on walking to the next stand:

Sorry for the blurriness, but that is Pilsner Urquell, some mystery beer (I wasn’t about to try that scariness), Stella and Bass.  These are no better than the previous stand; it’s like a beer tour of the macro breweries of Europe.  So I continued on to a stand that doesn’t even deserve a picture…they had Bluemoon and Leinenkugel Sunset Wheat.  This is when I started talking myself into the Pilsner Urquell: “that’s a solid pilsner”, but no! I continued on because I’ve heard rumors of Nationals Park having some good beer. Then finally I got to a stand with some actual micro brews:

I was ecstatic to finally find some beer with flavor: Old Dominion Ale (English Pale Ale)  and Fordham Copperhead Ale (Altbier).  These Breweries are generally local (Delaware and Maryland) so it was not too much of a surprise to find them at the stadium, but it was a welcome relief from all the macro beers widely available throughout the stadium.

So the answer is yes good beer can be found at the stadium, but wait there’s more!

A rain delay gave me a chance to go on a search for more beer!  I heard rumors of Dogfish being available at the stadium, but I never believed it. So I had time (an hour and a half rain delay) to go look; and much to my surprise I came across this stand behind section 136:

The mythical Dogfish has been found!!! I couldn’t believe it, multiple decent beers in the same place! Those would be the Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Kona Longboard Lager, Starr Hill Amber Ale, Starr Hill Lucy, Dogfish 60 Minute IPA, and Sam Adams Summer (Meh)!  Each were the standard $8.

So there you have it, good beer really can be found at Nationals Park!

5 responses

  1. j

    The restaurant under the Red Porch in centerfield has 60 Minute on tap, along with other micros. In the past that’s included Heavy Seas Loose Cannon, Southhampton Double Wit, and, for some reason, Bell’s Kalamazoo Stout.

    July 30, 2010 at 2:15 pm

  2. pyzocha

    Great to know, I will have to check it out next time I’m at the stadium. Thanks!

    July 30, 2010 at 2:17 pm

  3. seanldalton

    While it certainly tastes better than the macros, I still have a bone to pick with Old Dominion. . . Not only is it no longer produced IN the Old Dominion, but its parent company is 49% owned by Anheuser Busch. I now lump it into the same category as Red Hook and Widmer Brothers — former craft brewers now serving as fronts for the big macros — and avoid them.

    What say you?

    August 4, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    • pyzocha

      I have to say I totally forgot those details about Old Dominion. I agree with your lumping of those types of beer together and it is frustrating that the macros are basically trying to reduce the competition by purchasing the craft brewers. Another frustrating part about this trend is that the craft/micro breweries that are bought by the macros seem to have very little wiggle room to try brewing new beers or tinkering with the recipes of the classics because the macros are all about consistency. Your comments have sprouted some ideas that I hope to expand upon in a post .


      August 4, 2010 at 3:54 pm

  4. Pingback: Ballpark Brews: New Season New Beer? « The J Street Beer Review

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