Where Spotted: ChurchKey, 1337 14th St. NW
Price: $8 per 12oz bottle
Embarrassment of Niches: Sometimes I find myself staring blankly at the draft list at ChurchKey, stuck. Am I the world’s worst ingrate? A beer director dedicates himself to assembling the finest brews known to man, and I can’t even find one worth a sip? That’s when I remember the often-ignored bottle list. Draft beer is ephemeral, a taste of the now, but bottle lists are about finding the perfect choice for the occasion—and nothing is more welcome on a cold, rainy evening than Anchor’s warming barleywine.
An Englishman in New Wort: Old Foghorn presents itself with the courtliness of an English gentleman, or at least the English beers after which it was modeled. Each sip slowly rolls through stages of mellowness, as sweet figs and plums unfold into deeper tones of chocolate and cigar wrappers. Barleywine is armchair beer, with a ruby hue and a comforting strength, and when the weather is dreary, Old Foghorn is a veritable hearth.