Breweries Offer a Thirst-Quenching Adventure

​Here’s a reason to raise a glass tonight: Arlington is becoming an even better place for beer drinkers.

Adventures in Beertasting
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With three craft breweries per its roughly 220,400 county residents, Arlington’s ale trail is getting longer. New District Brewing Co., Capitol City Brewing Co. and Heritage Brewing Co. all offer something for both newbies and craft beer enthusiasts.

“One thing unique to Arlington is the array of good beer places concentrated in the Wilson Boulevard corridor,” said Stephen Lipps, D.C. correspondent for Mid-Atlantic Brewing News. “D.C. has areas with good beer bars, but not so many as this area between Clarendon and Courthouse offers, which is even more enticing when you have the Metro available at either end of this strip.”

beer map lays out Arlington’s brew trail and its friendly breweries:   

At New District Brewing Co. in Shirlington, a brewery tasting room provides New District’s beer and counter-height chairs in an industrial space with a warehouse vibe. It’s the first distribution brewery in Arlington County in more than 100 years. Patrons can sample beers with names such as the Potomac Paddleboarder and The Bright Future, and this microbrewery even has lagers. New District’s location backs up to a dog park, and locals like to tie pooches to posts outside and sit on the patio. Board games are available too.
Capitol City Brewing Co., with a location in downtown D.C. and in Arlington’s Village of Shirlington, brews ales, lagers and pilsners with brew houses located in each restaurant. Brewers monitor closely each phase of the brewing process and bring it fresh to the customer. Capitol City opened its doors in 1992 as the first brew pub in Washington, D.C. since prohibition, and its Shirlington location offers a view of the pedestrian promenade and outdoor seating in warmer weather. Menu selections feature Capitol City beer used in many of the dishes, and the restaurant’s pretzels are a favorite with customers
Heritage Brewing Co., in Clarendon’s Market Common, is a combination of a brewery, bottle shop and a farm-to-table restaurant with to-go and full service. The location is a barrel aging house and provides small pilot batches as well as offers a hot coffee bar with artisan roasted small batch pour over coffee by Veritas and a variety of nitro draft coffee and lattes.
“Clarendon had the artisan culture and community that we were looking for,” said Dom DiGiovanni, chief operating officer of Heritage Brewing Co. The restaurant’s beef comes from a local Virginia farm that feeds its cattle with spent grain from Heritage, according to a press release.

Besides breweries, Arlington restaurants and bars are known for exceptional beer selections on and off tap. Beer lovers’ oases include Heavy Seas Alehouse in Rosslyn, Fire Works American Pizzeria & Bar in Courthouse, Lyon Hall in Clarendon, World of Beer and Rustico in Ballston.

Continental Beer Garden, coming to the Rosslyn neighborhood in spring 2017, will offer an drinking spot with indoor and outdoor seating. And Rosslyn’s Hyatt Centric Arlington offers a growler program where customers buy a growler for $15 and refill it with one of 10 local beers.

Arlington even has a Great Wall of Beer, a who’s who of craft brews, at the Westover Market. The owners of the store, which has a Beer Garden and Beer Haus, say they aim to "perpetuate the appreciation of beer" and showcase the great brews throughout Virginia, the country and the world.

Getting there:  Besides Metro, plenty of area transportation companies offer regional beer travel tours: (Reston Limousine, Taste Tidewater Tours, Falcon Tours).

Author: Kathleen Murphy