Young and Hungry

Birch & Barley Chef Forages Ingredients for Bluejacket Beer Series

How have Megan Parisi and Greg Engert, the duo behind forthcoming brewery Bluejacket, spent their time preparing for the Neighborhood Restaurant Group's newest venture? We'll have the chance to find out this week. At 6 p.m. on Wednesday, ChurchKey will unveil Bluejacket's first five collaboration beers on draft, including one from its "Sidewalk Series" brewed with locally foraged ingredients.

The first of that series is Sidewalk Saison. "Gypsy" brewed at Iron Hill Brewery in West Chester, Pa., the beer is a traditional Belgian-style saison made with black pepper, coriander, lemon, and orange peels. The twist? The brew contains local violet wood sorrel foraged by Birch & Barley chef Kyle Bailey. According to Engert, the series of beers will feature herbs from such places as city planter pots on rooftops and sidewalks, as well as NRG's farm at Arcadia. (The Neighborhood Restaurant Group wouldn't provide further details about the sidewalk series; a publicist says they've promised an exclusive to the Washington Post.)

Bluejacket will also debut Washington O.C., a Belgian-style quadruple ale brewed with plums at The Bruery in Placentia, Calif., and Burns' Night, a Scotch ale brewed with smoked malt and molasses at Pizza Port Ocean Beach, in San Diego. ChurchKey will also be pouring previously-released Snack Attack, a movie munchie-themed collaboration with Tampa's quirky Cigar City and Boca Raton's Funky Buddha, and Black Berliner Techno Weiss, a unique take on a traditional northern German style brewed in partnership with Jason Oliver at Devils Backbone in Roseland, Va.

Parisi and Engert are on a campaign to brew as many as 25 beers at breweries across the country before their Navy Yard facility is up and running next year. Engert says D.C. will soon see a collaboration with The Brewers Art of Baltimore, a biere de garde brewed with honeysuckle, rose, and hibiscus. Engert and Parisi will also release brews with Dogfish Head in Lewes, Del., the Peekskill Brewery in Peekskill, N.Y., as well as some breweries overseas like Denmark-based Mikkeller.

Logo courtesy of Bluejacket / Neighborhood Restaurant Group

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