Whole Foods Market’s “First Thursday: Beer and Bites” helps mark the day
COLUMN WRITTEN BY MATT BRASCH
For Digital First Media
Today, April 7, craft beer fans once again welcome an unofficial holiday – “National Beer Day.” Although there is no definitive record of when the term “National Beer Day” first came into use, there is no doubt that the day has been celebrated every year since April 7, 1933 – the day it became legal to buy, sell and drink beer after 13 dry years of Prohibition. After signing the Cullen-Harrison “Beer-Wine Revenue Act” on March 22, 1933, President Franklin D. Roosevelt was reported as saying, “I think this would be a good time for a beer.”
FOR A BEER QUIZ, CHECK HERE.
Many breweries that had been in operation prior to Prohibition were permanently lost. But Pennsylvania’s D.G. Yuengling & Sons had continued brewing by making a low alcohol “near-beer” (at 0.5% ABV). When Prohibition ended in 1933, Yuengling created a “Winner Beer” and shipped a truckload to President Roosevelt. https://www.yuengling.com/faq/.
Today, many bars and restaurants hold special events to celebrate National Beer Day – some even start the night before with “New Beer Day’s Eve.” If you are looking to get out and celebrate National Beer Day, this year it coincides with Whole Foods Market’s “First Thursday: Beer and Bites,” a monthly event at each of the Whole Foods locations in the region where beer is sold. The Whole Foods Market in Plymouth Meeting, and its in-store bottle shop/bar, The Cold Point Pub, will be hosting at least 8 breweries who will be serving samples of their brew with paired foods from Whole Foods throughout the different departments in the store. The breweries expected this Thursday include: Boulevard, Deschutes, Ommegang, Otter Creek, Riverhorse, Round Guys, Stoudts, and Sweetwater.
Whole Foods Plymouth Meeting’s resident beer expert Anthony Marino said “One of the fun aspects of planning the monthly event is that the beer pairings are based on a ‘first come first served’ basis.” He explained, “before a recent Beer and Bites event, Brewery Ommegang called and asked if they could serve their Rosetta, a cherry ‘Kriek’ beer, mixed with Boulevard’s Raspberry Stout, paired with XOXO Chocolates sold by Whole Foods.” But another time, Ommegang might be paired with a meat or vegetable. Marino ensures that every beer that is served during the Beer and Bites events is available in The Cold Point Pub bottle shop so that if a shopper likes one, they can go home with more.
Even if you can’t make it to Beer & Bites this Thursday, you might want to consider grabbing a growler and making a quick stop into The Cold Point Pub. The Pub has 8 taps that change daily, with many varieties of beer – anywhere from local craft to Belgian imports. Early this week the taps included Aston, Pennsylvania-based 2SP Brewing Company’s “Solera Nectar” and Brasserie De La Senne’s “Taras Boulba.” We were excited to learn from Ashley Chaney, Whole Foods Marketing Team Leader, that in honor of National Beer Day, they will be tapping a keg of Portland, Maine-based Allagash Brewing Company’s “Little Brett.” A limited availability brew from 2015, according to Ashley, “this beer has notes of pineapple and bread crust.”
Whether you can attend the Beer & Bites event or only have time to grab a growler and take it home, on Thursday make sure you pause for a minute and lift a pint in honor of President Roosevelt and National Beer Day!