Breweries "Visited"

Monday, May 20, 2013

Day 527: Port Brewing Summer and Topping Out

Last Friday I checked off another bucket list item--participate in a topping out ceremony. What's that, you ask?
The other tree on the beam is a Franklinia tree; originally discovered by John Bartram in the southern U.S. and named for Benjamin Franklin, it is now extinct in the wild and is only available as a cultivated ornamental tree. 
It's a ceremony held to commemorate the placement of the last beam or bedding of the last block of masonry or brick in a building construction project. It usually involves placing an evergreen tree upon the structure to symbolize growth and bring luck. In instances where it is a final beam being placed into the structure, the beam is signed by the construction crew, various dignitaries and other important people involved in the project.
My signature, while huge, is not visible from this vantage point.
While I don't necessarily have a direct role in building the new Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion at The Franklin Institute, I did manage to sign that beam in bright yellow paint-pen large enough for the king of England to see. (Thank you, John Hancock.) I'm not going to lie. There is something really cool about knowing that my signature is going to sit atop our new building addition for many, many years to come. And one day long into the future when perhaps the building is being renovated, someone is going to look at it and wonder, "Who the hell is Marci G. and why does she dot her i's like a crazy person?"

And there it is, the final piece of this phase of construction. If you're like me and have been involved from the start of fundraising way back in 2006, this moment was a long time in the making. There were moments of great celebration. There were moments of darkness. There were many highs and lows along the way with some leaving us questioning whether we were mad.

There's a quote I enjoy about how there's a fine line between genius and crazy. It resonates with me...probably because I work with people who aren't afraid to dream big and make an impact.

Some other folks dedicated to dreaming big and perhaps even walking that fine line are the good folks at Port Brewing in San Diego. Since 2006, they've been brewing under the guise of Port Brewing. I inadvertently ruled them out in Year 1 of the Blog Named Brew adventure, when I reviewed Avant Garde ale from The Lost Abbey, the Belgian-inspired side of the operation. Since it's not the easiest beer to find in Pennsylvania, I'm very slowly making up for lost time.

The Summer pale ale is an American pale ale. It's brewed without any crystal malt, which is probably why it doesn't get a great rating from me. I like an American pale ale because you get that nice malt undertone hiding out with all the big bold hop flavor.

It pours a golden straw color with a bubbly, off-white head. It has lots of citrus aroma. The first thing I wrote in my tasting notes is "tastes like an IPA". There are serious hops in this beer. They impart grapefruit flavor, and a fresh greenness. I also wrote grapefruit in my notes four different times. So there's that. While this isn't a beer I would normally drink, I can appreciate how good it is.

Beer stats
Style: American pale ale
ABV: 5.2%
IBUs: Unknown
Rating: Good

Previously reviewed from Port Brewing
(Here is where you imagine me singing Feels Like the First Time by Foreigner)

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