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A Beer Education

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Summer for us often equals beer. While we aren't beer purists (is there such a thing?) we do know that what gets pumped out of a kegger isn't necessarily top quality, and that there is a whole world of light, dark, ale, lager, microbrew and so on out there. We had some time to kill before a movie recently, so we checked out the Happy Hour at The Yardhouse's Pasadena location, where we wound up getting not only a great deal, but also a little beer education. We'd hit up the Yarhouse before (down in Long Beach, once, too, for a spark-less drinks date, but that's another story) and had enjoyed a pint with some lunch; the Yardhouse has never been for us a destination, but more of "well, we're here anyhow" place, which is precisely how we wound up here this time. Their beer list is overwhelming to novices like us, but a desire to break free from the norm (say,a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale) had us eager for expert advice. Our server, Diego, was more than up for the task. The man knows his beer! He asked us what we liked in a beer (and didn't laugh when we looked bewildered and said "Huh?" when he offered the characteristic "Hoppy"). He got us going on our first round, Primo Blue Hawaiian Hefeweisen for our co-drinker, and a Bayhawk Honey Blonde for us. He asked us to taste them to see if they were to our liking, and then asked us to describe the taste. We're no good at that, but we liked it, and drank it down like a good scholar. We had time for one more round (and, easily, the bucks, since at Happy Hour from 3-6 all pints are $2.75) and our companion could not be talked out of the Delirium Tremens (which is served in a stemmed glass), and our server surprised us with his choice, which turned out to be the Anchor Steam, for which Diego also provided us the background info, to our delight. We can't guarantee that the Yardhouse will become a destination, but it is nice to know that it's there, with its one hundred thirty plus beers on tap, and staff who are willing and able to help.

The Yardhouse 330 East Colorado Blvd. Suite 230 (at the Paseo Colorado) Pasadena (626) 577-YARD. Other Southern California locations: Costa Mesa, Irvine, Long Beach, Rancho Cucamonga, Rancho Mirage, and San Diego.