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by Danielle Boudreaux

Before me was a full flight of beer samples at Atlas Brew Works which includes three small “pints” of three blends. I was lucky enough to try three seasonal blends in addition to Atlas’ special 1500 South Cap Lager.

My flight included District Commons, Rowdy, Home Rule and the 1500 that you can only get at Nats Park. I was in beer heaven. District Commons, a California Common featuring biscuit malt, is a crisp, yet fruity lager; whereas, Rowdy, a rye beer, is even more robust and fruity and in my humble beer lovin’ opinion a great mid-range ale that can easily rival Newcastle. Home Rule, an India pale lager, is just a nice, crisp summer beer, and the 1500, a German Helles, is also light and crisp with a bitter note at the end. My favorite was Rowdy, but my hubs won the coin toss, and we ended up heading home with a growler of the lighter District Commons.

While the local brewed beer was impressive, that was not the only thing going on this Saturday at Atlas. Usually on Saturdays they only open to the public for tastings (‘member that flight I mentioned) and tours. But, recently co-owners Justin and Will decided to get their name out there by way of events like the Puppies & Pints event this past Saturday. The brewery has only been in operation since September 2013. According to Justin, Puppies & Pints was their first of these events, and there may be more coming during the summer months. The extras that Atlas had to offer this Saturday in addition to pups was $5 pints, freebies from Metro Mutts and access to the Top Dog food truck.

Before we talk dogs…let’s talk food! The Top Dog food truck serves none other than dogs, hot dogs that is. My husband and I got the Sonoran dog complete with a free milk bone for our pooch. The hot dog came dressed with crispy bacon, pinto beans, caramelized onions, diced tomatoes, lime mayo, mustard, jalapeno sauce and fresh jalapeno rings. It was quite tasty, spicy and messy. I am pretty sure I went home with mustard smudge on my cheek. The spiciness of the jalapenos and sauces combined with the saltiness of the mustard made this hot dog great beer food. Securing Top Dog for the event was a good call on Atlas’ part because when there is food present, folks linger longer, drink more and buy more.

My super yummy Top Dog dog
My super yummy Top Dog dog

Now for the pups…there were dogs as far as the eye could see…er…well, maybe not, but there were a lot of dogs there. Many had been brought in by patrons and a few others were brought in by the Washington Humane Society. While there, I was lucky enough to meet Johnny and Audrey from the Humane Society; both are currently up for adoption. By the time I’d left, Johnny had built quite a reputation, and I would be surprised to find that Johnny was not adopted Saturday. He was such an awesome pooch, I had a  mind to take him home myself!

If you didn’t make it to Puppies & Pints, but want to go to Atlas on any old Saturday, they are sure not to disappoint. While there for Puppies & Pints, I also caught the brewery tour with Will, co-owner and head brewer. He is the man behind the art. While on the tour, I gained a new appreciation for the art of beer making. According to Will, making lighter beer takes more skill and artistic ability than dark ales; his love and passion for the brew was evident as he took us through their operation at Atlas. Tours like the one I took, sample flights and $12 growlers are to be had every Saturday from 1-4 p.m.

Atlas Brew Works
2052 West Virginia Ave NE
Washington DC, 20002
(202) 832-0420

Photo courtesy of Atlas Brew Works