Pretty much still the brick, but without the sprawling, ancient bottle list. Nothing inside has changed, which I found oddly comforting, but it’s still degenerated over the years. Glad to see it’s still being used for beer, and it’s now focus on taps. Fairly well chosen, mostly regional stuff, but the neighborhood overall is so rocking (not to mention the area as a whole) that it’s hard to imagine making this one a destination. Still worth a stop, depending on what’s on.
This place has a very long history and was apparently one of the first places on the east coast to take beer seriously. Anyone with an interest in the history of craft beer in the states should definitely check this place out. Unfortunately, this place hasn’t evolved with the times and is now sort of an afterthought in the DC scene. It’s a dingy, dark basement joint that feels as if it hasn’t had a thorough cleaning in a few years. I entertained myself while drinking by watching mice scurry behind the bar. There’s 30ish taps of not particularly impressive stuff available. The bottle list is very large, there’s easily 250+ beers listed as being available. We settled on a pretty cheap bottle of mead from Moonlight, crushed it, then moved on. Overall, this place is now more of a curiosity than a serious beer destination.
I knew this place back when it was The Brickskeller. As a fresh 21 year old spending a summer in DC, this was a frequent weekend stop. Back in 2008, it was a booming business, and although the bottle list was never completely up to date, there were so many new beers to try. This place opened me up to the world of craft beer. Well, I went back home to NY after that summer and did not return to DC until 2012 on a trip to see some friends. It was a bit different, but still mostly had the same look as the old Brickskeller. A cozy, tight downstairs with brick interior. When I was there I had some Hopslam on tap and a few special Stone beers still on tap from an event earlier that week. I also had a shepherd’s pie which was really tasty. Overall, probably not the beer mecca it was back in the day and I am certainly not a regular visitor to attest to its quality. Perhaps there are better places, but it will always hold a certain special meaning to me.
Visited on a Sunday evening. Enjoyed the home style food which was good. Prices were reasonable and the selection was interesting (despite the fact that they had an issue that kept half the taps out of service.) I’d have to check, but I seem to recall there being only 24 taps here, not 40. Anyhow, I definitely get what others mean by this place being a sort of sad, damp cellar. Definitely very old, can’t say it affected me very much for one visit, but I wouldn’t necessarily make it on of my gotos either.