Growlers, those 64-ounce refillable To-Go beer jugs, have arrived at Eagle Rock Brewery. In non-beer geek speak, that means for $12 to $15, you can now go home with four freshly pulled pints (16 ounces) of Eagle Rock's brews.
Great. Why not just buy a 6-pack of that Revolution XPA? For starters, growlers are fun. You get to saddle up to the microbrewery's bar, toss back a pint and leave with the freshest beer you're going to find, short of outfitting your bathtub with fermentors and carboys. The price is great for four pints of microbrewed beer, plus you get major recycling brownie points (as you save that growler for future fills). Oh, and there's that little issue of Eagle Rock Brewery only offering beers on tap (bottles are on the horizon at some point, according to co-owner Jeremy Raub).
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Do note there are a few growler rules to keep in mind.
The first is legal -- you can't arrive with your Bruery growler and expect an Eagle Rock fill-up. Thanks to stingy government alcohol rules, you can only fill a properly labeled growler from the brewery where you intend to purchase the beer (Eagle Rock's growlers are $20). And timing-wise, you'll want to plan that growler fill to coincide with your anticipated consumption dates. As with an opened bottle of wine, within two days you'll have a stale brew on your hands (though there are countless theories on how to stretch that time frame by a day or so).
You can taste the beers in the taproom before you make a growler commitment to, say, the just-released Limbo, a summer saison that Raub describes as "very tropical, like a big mango... almost juicy, really." Or maybe the Libertine, an amber witbier. It might be wise to invest in a second growler. You know, in case the first one breaks.
Growler fills at Eagle Rock Brewery are $12 to $15. Available on Fridays and Saturdays from 4 to 6 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 6 p.m., 3056 Roswell St, Glassell Park, 323.257.7866.