Last weekend I had the opportunity to attend the Detox to Retox (D2R): Yoga + Beer Tasting event at Hellbender Brewing Company in Northeast, Washington D.C. Led by the amazing yoga instructor Amy Rizzotto (E-RYT), the monthly series consists of one hour of pretty intense yoga, followed by a free beer tasting at Hellbender Brewing Company. This is a “bring your own mat” event, although there are mats on hand just in case you don’t have one. Tickets are $25 per person and include yoga, a four-beer tasting and 20% off of all beers, merchandise and growlers.
As a novice yogi, I was intimidated to learn that out of more than 20 participants, I was the only person who wasn’t experienced. However, I was able to keep up and worked up a nice little sweat. It’s definitely an alternate workout I will incorporate into my existing regimen. Directly following yoga, we were able to help ourselves to some freebies from Reebok as well as some healthy snacks.
Now on to the good part, the part you really care about…THE BEER! Upon entering the tasting room, there were long wooden picnic style benches with snacks such as pretzels and other treats to accompany the beers as you drink. Another bonus was the large flat screen TVs showing all of the college football games. Yoga, beer, football, and snacks…how can you beat that?!
We were able to taste four beers: three that were pre-selected, and then we could pick our fourth beer from the menu on the wall.
Here is what was on the menu:
Bare Bones Kolsch
A traditional German Kolsch style ale brewed with all American ingredients. Cold conditioning lager temperatures gives it a brilliant, crisp pilsner quality. Slightly bitter with floral and spicy hop aromas and finishes clean and dry. 5% ABV, 21 IBU
Red Line Ale
A full-bodied American red ale that showcases a deep ruby red color and rich toffee aromas. Floral notes with hints of orange and citrus. 6% ABV, 35 IBU.
North x Northeast
This stout is a collaboration with D.C.’s Compass Coffee. It’s a combination of their cardinal blend with Hellbender’s base, dry stout to create this chocolatey, roasty beer reminiscent of a great cup of cold-brewed coffee. 5% ABV, 35 IBU
Southern Torrent Saison
A unique yeast strain gives this Belgian saison a fruity, floral aroma with hints of citrus and pear. Hazy, gold hued, rich body. Finished dry with spicy notes from late noble hop additions. This is a specialty only served during summer months that we were able to try because there some left over.
My favorites are probably a tie between the Bare Bones Kolsch and the Southern Torrent Saison with the Red Line Ale following close behind. While there weren’t any suggestions on which foods/snacks to pair with each beer, I took the liberty to try all of the different salty and sweet things on the table to see which brought out different notes and flavors in each.
I really enjoyed this beer. I am not a coffee or chocolate lover, but I took one for the team (you, the readers) and tried the coffee stout anyway. While it was not horrible, it really tasted like an iced coffee. So if that is your thing, then this is a beer up your alley.
About Hellbender Brewing Company
Hellbender Brewing Company was created out of a true love for the art, culture, history, and science of craft brewing. We have created every recipe as an artistic interpretation of an existing style, and refined it with years of fine tuning and tasting. Lots of tasting. Combined with our use of a cutting edge, mash filter brewing system, our beer is more water efficient and environmentally sustainable than other craft breweries, creating truly one-of-a-kind beer in the Nation’s capital.
I really enjoyed this event and loved the pairing of the seemingly unrelated activities. The combination made for the perfect afternoon. Hellbender Brewing Company will be celebrating their one year anniversary with a party on Saturday, November 14th. You can purchase tickets here and tell them we sent you. Cheers!
– Candice Coleman