DC Brau-Oskar Blues Collaboration | Smells Like Freedom
The last Thursday in February came and went in Washington, D.C., just as it did elsewhere across the rest of the United States. But Feb. 26, 2015, was a notable date among the residents of the District for one particular number: 71.
This was the day Initiative 71, which legalized the possession of certain amounts of personal marijuana, was implemented by the city. Whatever regulatory views individuals residents of the District actually hold, this initiative’s implementation furthered support of “home rule,” which is the concept that D.C. residents should govern their own affairs, without full federal interaction.
Initiative 71 rolled out with minimal fanfare, actually.
Except for beer drinkers.
DC Brau (which seems to level all political views) paired up with Colorado’s Oskar Blues for a collaboration brew inspired by home rule and Initiative 71 (coincidentally enough we’ll have more on this beer later today as it was available over the weekend at Denver’s Collaboration Fest). The limited-release American IPA Smells Like Freedom (7 percent ABV) was rolled out at a small number of establishments in the District and at the DC Brau brewery, where my husband and I sampled (or guzzled?) it.
The timing was just too perfect for my trip to Hendersonville, N.C. the weekend before. Visiting my cousin and her three young kids, we awed at the mountains and drank many, many different beers.
One was Oskar Blues Brewing Company’s Pinner (4.9 percent ABV). We loved the Brevard branch of the brewhouse; we ran around the place, sampled beer, ate peanuts and chased toddlers.
So our palates were ripe for tasting Smells Like Freedom.
It’s quite hoppy. Very hoppy. Light amber in color, it doesn’t carry much of a head and has earthy, piney notes — and, according to DC Brau’s tasting notes, cannabis and white pepper. (Full disclosure: We don’t consume cannabis so really, have no clue as to how it tastes.)
It’s definitely not fruity, but does have some tangerine elements to soften it a bit. But this is a hoppy, mildly bitter brew.
Here is where you can find Smells Like Freedom in DC, besides the DC Brau brewhouse in Northeast:
- Meridan Pint
- Lyman’s Tavern
- District Commons
- Plan B
- Costa Brava
- Capitol Lounge
- The Pug
- Boundary Road
- Star & Shamrock
- Maddy’s Bar & Grille