22 June 2009
Ruddy Duck in Solomons revisited
Happened to have a family event down in St. Mary's County this past weekend, so I swung by the just-opened Ruddy Duck.
Quick and simple: Large crowds that Father's Day weekend. Menu is priced to compete with the TGIRubyBenniOutBee's of the food world--the most expensive thing I saw was a $20 steak entree, with most entrees in the low $10's or even lower. Brick oven pizzas looked and smelled wonderful.
But you're reading this for the beer. At the moment they have four house beers on, with the part-time brewer, Jonathan Reeves (ex-Sweetwater and Appalachian) brewing as fast as he can. Co-owner Carlos Yanez says that of over 2,000 web coupons for a free pint of beer (for signing up for the e-mailing list), only a hundred or so have been redeemed so far.
And the beer quality? I went in expecting pedestrian or mediocre--think the Hops chain, or any mass-market brewpub chain. I was surprised. The Belgian Wit was a bit too non-Belgian and light, if you ask me--and the brewer and owners know it, and are looking to beef up the next batch. But it'll be perfect for summer heat. Their Pale Ale is seemingly styled on the order of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, not a pedestrian and inoffensive offering; the IPA had an aggressive bite to it, aiming to please hopheads; and fermenting right now is a Dubbel...... rounding out the tap selection are a couple guest beers, including Dominion Oak Barrel Stout, Bud Light, and Brooklyn Lager.
Oh, and what Belgian beer must a place named Ruddy Duck carry?
Yep. Kwak. And they do.