Widmer Napkin

In my last post (Beer: Don’t Describe it, Drink it.) I discussed how beer brings people together and helps build community. When drinking any one of the many craft beers available, one quickly learns there is more in a beer than just flavor. Widmer Brothers Brewing knows this too.

I was invited to a private Widmer Brothers Brewing tasting held at BEER on Monday, April 15th. I was rather reluctant. Expecting a panel of judges, short pours, and tasting notes, I was pleasantly surprised to find none of that. In fact, BEER was quite the establishment worth visiting and Widmer pulled out some serious punches.


No tasting notes or descriptions in sight, Widmer offered up 8 new, improved, and experimental beers. Other than asking staff, the only information you had to go by was the name and ABV, which was handwritten on a napkin. Good thing because my first choice for the night was Kill Devil Brown Ale at a whopping 9.5%. Setting that aside and moving towards the refreshing, almost champagne like Marionberry Hibiscus Gose, I realized quickly that I too can love fruit-based beers. With a slightly tart and yeasty finish, the Marionberry proved very refreshing and not overly fruity.

Next, I went straight for the Hopside Down IPL next. The newest edition to the Rotator IPA Series—and the first lager for the series as well—the IPL holds its own against any IPA on the market. A balanced beer with a sharp citrus front, Hopside is dry and super clean thanks to the lager yeast that fermented this fine beast.

As I continued to taste these fine artisan crafted beers, I noticed something that caught my inebriated attention, something more than expected at an beer tasting. People were talking about more than just the beer. Reminiscent of two friends reuniting after years apart, people were catching up, telling stories of years past and future plans. I overheard one guy talking about his recently born child, and another planning a long overdue vacation. I was happy to see both Widmer brothers arrive and quickly fade into the social, community-driven night like any other guest. Both were super kind and mellow, just two brothers enjoying great beer—even if it is the beer they make—among friends and colleagues.

The night ended with me grabbing several sandwiches for my walk home. Thoroughly impressed with a very mellow evening supplied by fantastically crafted beer, “Widmer, Ya did it again!”