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Spring into craft beer

Posted by Anthony Dominic on April 2, 2014

Whether it be TV series, films, albums or food, I'm apt to revisit my favorites—to play it safe. So, naturally, as a lover of craft beer, I’ve had more than my fair share of Southern Tier and Great Lakes drafts. The logic—a cost-benefit-like analysis of defying my comfort zone—is frivolous, but I know I’m not the only one to play this game while perusing a bar’s draft list.

Fortunately, for those of you who share in my dilemma, Merion Village bar Hal and Al’s has our much-needed incentive: The Parsons Challenge. Put simply, the challenge is to try 30 beers in 30 days. The prize: a Hal & Al’s T-shirt and that invaluable sensation that comes with being adventurous. All you have to do is tell a bartender you’re ready to take the challenge. They’ll provide you with a scorecard, with which you’ll record, date and score each brew you try. (And who doesn’t love being a critic?)

I don’t write you as a grizzled veteran of the challenge. I write you as a hopeful. And I think spring is my season. Not to mention, dozens of the region’s brewers are currently producing some of their best beers of the year. (Calling all hop heads: Brew Kettle White Rajah just went on tap last week.)

Now, could this mean wedging bar trips into your already-packed schedule? Sure. Could this mean handing over some $150 to Hal & Al’s? Quite possibly. (But you can make your trips during Happy Hour, 4 to 8 p.m. daily, when all drafts are sold at half price.) Could this mean going down in Hal & Al’s history as someone who was brave enough to try something new? Most definitely. 

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