March 20, 2009

Laban "chat" Reveals Craig's As An O'Reilly's Fan

As you've read before here at IHAS,
Craig Laban loves him some saaz hops.
His summer fridge stores Pikeland Pils as a staple.

But what I was not privy to was his affection for our O'Reilly's stout.

This past St. Pats revealed the info in Craig's weekly Tuesday "chat."
They chat about beer week.

Laban shares his thoughts on one of his more eventful meetings during the 10 close attention to the bold words,
"...Sly Fox’s O’Reilly’s Stout, which might my favorite dry stout of all."

I was also contacted by Guinness' PR firm to meet with Fergal Murray.
I would have certainly welcomed the opportunity, but alas, and regrettably I had not a moment to do so.

Guinness did a great job lining themselves up with promos throughout the area.
One day, Murray even found himself on O'Reilly turf in Phoenixville.
But "Throwdown in Phoenixville," doesn't quite have the ring that "Throwdown in Franklintown" does....

From the chat:

Speaking of Beer Week, I’d be curious to hear some of your highlights.

The best thing I drank? A pint of “Backwoods Bastard”, a wee heavy Scotch ale from Founders being featured at the Sidecar Bar (22nd and Christian) that tasted like a fizzy glass of bourbon-with-a-spritz-of-beer. Really bold and balanced, like all of Founders’ brews (we also loved the coffee-flavored Breakfast Stout and the spicy Red Rye).
On the topic of St. Paddy’s themes, though, I also had the intriguing opportunity last weekend to meet up with one of Ireland’s greatest beer rock stars for a pint: Fergal Murray, the brewmaster from Guinness. He was here on tour in between appearances on the Jimmy Kimmel and Today shows, and I found him at the tail-end of a one-day eight-stop Irish pub crawl through Philly. I have to say he looked a wee bit numb from the rigors of his journey as he perched against a railing inside the Black Sheep Pub, flanked by a posse of kilt-clad Guinness girls and local distributors, with a glowing green Guinness trinket dangling around his neck. He was in charming spirits, nonetheless, and politely gave good marks to the pints he’d sampled in town – though he noted with mild pique that the Black Sheep had served him Guinness in a Harp glass. Between his 11 p.m. brogue and the din of the bar, our brief chat was uneventful. But it was still one of my highlights from Beer Week. It also made me realize that with all the great local and international craft brews coming into town over the past few years, including Sly Fox’s O’Reilly’s Stout, which might my favorite dry stout of all, that I’ve pretty stopped drinking Guinness of late. ‘Tis a shame. For an industrial beer, it is still a remarkably good product.

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