beach and beer

ma and i don’t have much in the way of traditions, we are not even all that good about celebrating our birthdays.  We do always go back to maryland for the winter holidays, and we do always spend a day at the beach on that holiday.

ma and i both really like the beach, but not for the same reason most folks do.  we both dislike the smell of sunblock, laying on the beach, getting tans, crowds, and kitschy t-shirt shops. going in the middle of winter means that we are able to enjoy all the things we like and don’t have to deal with any of the things we don’t like.

the beach of choice is rehoboth on the shore of delaware, and certainly no small part of that is that it’s home to dogfish head brewery.  when ma and i had the good sense to quite smoking many years ago, we celebrated an early month free of smoking with a trip to the smoke free brewpub.  we enjoyed watching as folks had to go out to the cold and have a smoke, just helping to reenforce the decision to quit.

the new outside of the brewery

i’ve been visiting dogfish almost since it opened, and it’s been amazing to watch as they went from an operation that brewed in 10 gallon batches, to the huge complex that you see in the above photo, the fastest growing brewery in the states.  even while we were there they were greatly expanding and had done major renovations since we had last gone to visit.

the main brewery is in milton, about 10 miles from rehoboth, and they offer tours as well as tastings.  it’s worth a trip just for the fact that the tasting room often has beers available on draft that are not at the brewpub.  in this case they had the midas touch and the palo santo marron which were not at the brewpub.  both of these are pretty strong beers in the 8-10% range, and even though i like drinking beer, i’m a real lightweight, it doesn’t take much to go to my head, but fortunately they give small samples.

for lunch we visited, where else? the brew pub in rehoboth.

beers at dogfish head

we enjoyed a small glass of the life and limb ale,  a strong dark ale brewed with maple and birch syrups in collaboration with the west coast brewery sierra nevada, and a couple of sandwiches.

among our favorite parts of the beach is simply walking on the beach

the beach!

and we like it to look like this – empty.  normally this time of year we might pass a couple of folks the whole time.  as we go we like looking for odd debris that has washed ashore, and it was an extra good time for this as storms had washed much in.  many parts were covered in nothing but shells.

beach covered in shells

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