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February 18, 2010

What beers would you like to see on tap at Don't Know?

is this glass 1/4 full or 3/4 empty? you decide.Jason Zink and the rest of the crew at Don't Know Tavern are almost finished adding another draft tower at the South Baltimore bar. (A draft tower is a rack of taps.)

The new taps will bring Don't Know's grand total to 18 draft beers -- possibly making it the bar with the most taps in the neighborhood (sorry, Taps).

Zink has three of the six new spots filled already, and he's up in the air about the other three. That's why he e-mailed me, asking for your suggestions.

What beers would you like to see on tap at Don't Know? Here is the current draft list ...

Now on tap:

1. Miller Lite
2. Leinenkugel Sunset Wheat
3. Peroni
4. Pilsner Urquell
5. Sam Adams Seasonal
6. Guinness
7. Harp
8. Magic Hat Seasonal
9. Dogfish
10. Newcastle
11. Sierra Nevada
12. Blue Moon Seasonal

Beers Zink wants to add:

13. Heineken
14. Amstel Light
15. Dos Equis Amber
16. ?
17. ?
18. ?

"I would love to add Resurrection but I am still on Brewer's Art's waiting list after 5 years, unless Volker wants to take pity on my soul and allow me to carry his beers," he wrote.

Personally, I'd lobby for Clipper City Loose Cannon, or another beer in the Heavy Seas line.

Any ideas, gang?

(Photo by Mary Hartney)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 8:07 AM | | Comments (59)
Categories: Bars & Clubs


Tip Pool Porter, Litigation Lager,
Disgruntled ex-Employee Extreme Double IPA

How about UFO or something else from Harpoon.

Why is he adding those 3? I wouldn't drink any of them. For my money, Heineken is the most overrated beer on the market. Negro Modelo is much better than Dos Equis. How about these?:
- Boddington's Pub Ale
- Fordham Scotch Ale
- Flying Dog Pale Ale

Loose Cannon, Dogfish Head 90 Minute, Stone Pale Ale

BaltoMarzHon or whatever dumb new name that beer has.

Despite colossally poor marketing it's still an outstanding beer!

Beer snobs aside you need go really ironic with one of them. Colt 45 or something like that.


Dales! especially since this blog has had conversations about how hard it is to consistently find on tap.

also, if the wait is still too long for resurrection, what about ozzy?

Geez.. something local!


Add Hoegarden and Miller High Life to that Tap System...Something for the snobs, and something for those of us that appreciate the Champagne of beers...

This seems simple enough to me. Obviously by that draft list you're not looking to cater to beer snobs, but by adding the following three, not only do you showcase some local breweries and a few different styles of beer, but also any beer appreciators that wander in should be pleased as well:

-Clipper City (Loose Cannon)
-Flying Dog (Road Dog Porter)
-Clay Pipe (Backfin Pale Ale)

I agree with previous posters on these two:

Any selection from:
Clipper City

Also, Star Hill IPA is really tasty (and regional) !

I don't love all Flying Dog beers, but Raging Bitch is a good one, but pretty strong (8.3%)

Brewer's Art Ozzie!!!!

A bar's selection more than often mimics their clientele. All 15 so far are well known but would not get the attention of any true beer aficionado.

Since you already have the pedestrian stuff, why not go for a rotation of a few extreme products from Clipper City, Flying Dog, Brewer's Art, Whitemarsh and Olivers. All are local, have normal and seasonal beers that can keep your selections fresh and they have loyal followings that may bring new business into the bar. Plus, they can always help you out in a pinch.

Every bar in Baltimore should have Heavy Seas Loose Cannon.

Also like to see a seasonal Flying Dog and another local... Maybe another Brewer's Art besides Resurrection (Ozzy?) or the new local Stillwater.

Didn't Don't Know have Pabst on draft?

I agree with the push for local beers. And Raging Bitch is fantastic.

How he doesn't have one Clipper City Brewing Co. beer on there is grounds for license revoking.

A good bar should always have at least 2 or 3 quality local beers.

- Heavy Seas Loose Cannon (Clipper City)
- Flying Dog anything (In Heat Wheat, Raging Bitch, etc.)
- a hand crafted truly local beer from someone like Oliver's (Pratt St. Ale House) should also be a welcomed addition

Oh and a Brewer's Art beer wouldn't hurt. Resurrection sells, no matter what part of town you're in. The Ozzy is great stuff too. Beer snob or not, everyone seems to like those 2 beers.

-Smuttynose Robust Porter
-Allagash White
-Dogfish Head 90 minute

I agree with the posters above that Loose Cannon would be awesome.

They currently have the "who's who" of the "above generic but still generic" beer group, so I would definitely go with something a little more rare/crafty. This wouldn't upset the current clientele but might attract some more beer aficionados.

I am a fan of dark beers (and Guinness is the only one available currently), so maybe Old Rasputin Imperial Stout or Heavy Seas Peg Leg or Victory Storm King.

Anchor Porter would be another darker beer that would fit well.

Since Newcastle is really the only other brown, maybe Dogfish Indian Brown.

Keeping a couple of taps available for seasonals or whatever might be available that looks good isn't a bad idea either.

Can't go wrong with a Stone or Rogue brew

Frequent here so I'd want to see, beyond friendlier bartenders:

1. Boddington's
2. Clipper City Heavy Seas Loose Cannon
3. Flying Dog line

- Yuengling PREMIUM!
- Loose Cannon, definitely
- Something from Avery/Stone/Rogue

All of those taps and THOSE are the beers he's currently got on and is planning to put on? Wow.

They must have great... wings or something.

Check the sales numbers. Good beer (craft beer) sales are up 30% while the big corporate, tasteless stuff is down. There's a reason for this.

But maybe that's the crowd he's trying to attract.

I second john in fedhill's votes, especially Stone.

Stone IPA (or Arrogant Bastard)
Rogue Dead Guy
Heavy Seas Seasonal

I agree with most of the other posters. The existing selection is pretty run of the mill, so definitely throw in some tasty microbrewed locals. Anything will do, but a belgian-style would be awesome (as long as it's not a white).

BTW, did you know that Yuengling Premium is actually less expensive (per case) than regular Yuengling? I've only ever seen it up in PA.

Westvleteren Blonde would be nice. In fact, Jason, if you don't get it, I'll never go to your bar again.

A Beer Douche

Flying Dog "Raging Bitch" IPA. Great beer! Anything from Southern Tier would also be awesome- that one could be a rotating tap.

What about something somewhat unique in the market, depending on what is available through the distributor, such as a Saranac brew or (dare I say) LABATT BLUE!!

Definitely agree with PBR, either Brewer's Art, and most certainly Flying Dog/Heavy Seas....

Dales on tap would rock.

An absolute must is the trio of locals, Flying Dog, Heavy Seas and Pratt Street Ale House/Oliver's. All three are experiencing huge growth and have loyal followings.

EVERY bar in the city has the listed lineup (well, not EVERY bar, but most), the bars the beer geeks congregate at, don't. Better margins in the craft beer anyway, and your customer base starts graduating from beer pongville.

I vote for Great Lakes Brewing Companies Dortmunder Gold Lager.

Bring in something unique. I don't think anyone in Baltimore has it.

I don't know if I'd ever leave if they had High Life on tap.

Heh the first thing I thought was the Ressy. What about something what some kick like Victory's Golden Monkey? What the crap is Yuengling Premium?

Clipper City Gold Ale or Marz Hon get my vote. Keep it local, plus, they're excellent beers!

@BigGayAl- that's the funniest thing that I have read in a while. Too funny. It's definitely going to be 3 local beers, hopefully on a rotaing basis. Thanks for all of you suggestions. the new draft tower should be ready within 2-3 weeks. Thanks again.

Great call on Great Lakes.

Though if some of the Even-though-its-March-I-am-still-going-to-wear-my-Ray-Lewis-jersey Bmore folk may tear down the tap tower if they know GL hails from Cleveland.

Dale's Pale Ale!

Budwieser, Schlitz, PBR

Dales Pale Ale please!

@Baltimore Liquid, we don't hate Cleveland. In fact, we don't pay them much mind at all (and why would we?)

I'm pretty sure it's the other way around!

Gotta have Yuengling on there. And how about a good cider like Strongbow.

Flying Dog Raging Bitch
Any Clipper City

three locals would seem to make sense to me: something from clipper city, flying dog, and maybe stoudts in philly?

Rich is onto something there with that draft cider...

Dales Pale Ale.

Dales Pale Ale, Southern Tier IPA, Unibroue Maudite, Schneider Weisse, Triple Karmiliet, Old Chub, Mamas Little Yella Pils, VAlier Extra, St bernardus Abt 12

@BAltimoreBeerGuy, great lakes is not distributed in MD, although great beers

There is a wonderful beer not too many people have heard of, that would be great to add to their new section of taps….it is called Budweiser…some people call it the king of beers.

Variety is the spice of life. I certainly would be more interested in a surprise every time, although it's somewhat likely the standard bar crowd depends on regulars that want the same damned thing every time.

So, let's see the rest of the suggestions.... I love Fordham's Scotch Ale, but as I recall it's a seasonal and not available year round, so if he wants variety put it in the rotation, but don't get it to have on constantly. . . . Champale is extinct.... I'm not sure Starr Hill (from Charlottesville, Va. and a distributing arrangement with BudBev) is still available in Md. . . . and as Erin said, you can't get Great Lakes around here.

Just to be different, if you want something no one else seems to have yet save for one place so far, Goose Island from Chicago is around in the market now. Though I'd prefer Wild Goose IPA myself.......

Natty Boh!

You might consider doing one tap on rotation that would showcase a "home grown" brewer. I read Kasper's column about the Baltimore guy who just started brewing out of Frederick. We could support one of Baltimore's own and offer something unique.

If you are going to put another IPA into the lineup, I would suggest 90 minute or Wild Goose. You might even consider rotating the 60min iwth the 90 on occassion. So good.

Another brewery that is gaining momentum is Evolution from the eastern shore. I wouldnt mind seeing them around more bars

IDK what kind of hoops you would need to jump through to even get it in this state, but I would be there every night if you found a way to have Hair of The Dog on tap.

Clipper City beer or Dale's come on J do something good.

OK, just for the record there is no anti-Jason Zink conspiracy at TBA! There is still a waiting list, yes...but the only places that have stopped getting Res in recent memory were restaurants that went through about a keg a month. Jason has told me he needs about a keg a week! We are brewing at capacity here, folks! And Ozzy...we can barely keep up with Ozzy demand either, primarily because of the high demand for Res. It's a vicious circle. (And I know I owe you an email about this Jason, it's been really busy...)

I would second the Stillwater Stateside Saison recommendation. It's pretty damned tasty. I can't wait to pour the bottles at TBA. Plus you are supporting a local brewer! I would also consider Clipper or FD products as already recommended, or perhaps even sneak over the state line and line up some Victory, a brewery that is underpoured in Baltimore IMHO.

Oh, and to the best of my knowledge, Great Lakes and Hair of the Dog do not currently have a wholesaler in Maryland. Great Lakes is now available in NoVa, though, from what I hear. That Dortmunder Gold is a good one...

PBR. Not many bars have it and it's cheap. Could make specials around it.



any clipper city

The final 3 are:

16. Heavy Seas Loose Cannon

17. Flying Dog Doggy Style

18. Evolution Lucky 7 Porter

We have 15 going right now and we will have the next three up on March 18th in time for the NCAA tournament.

I would like to thank everybody for their suggestions.

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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