Friday, April 14, 2017

Evil Genius: Under the El

North of the city center, Philadelphia gets industrial in a hurry.  The Market-Frankford transit line emerges from subway mode as it heads north, an elevated train over Front Street.  This is where
#EvilGeniusBrewing opened a taproom around the end of February.  Large-scale manufacturing is long gone, shuttered brick buildings five stories high and a block long, mark the landscape, but plenty of commercial and small fabrication firms remain.  This is where two guys who met in accounting classes at Villanova ten years ago hatched the idea of starting a brewery.  Luke Bowen and Trevor Hayward set out to learn the business of brewing and this is their result.  Their head brewer, Jon Defibaugh, learned his craft at two distinguished local breweries.
Evil Genius has a sort of partnership with a Connecticut brewery, Thomas Hooker, which brews and bottles the only packaged product, Hooray, Sports, a pale ale. There is a wide array of beers made here on tap.  Whimsical naming is the rule--"This One Time At Band Camp" (a double IPA), "Shut Up, Meg" (farmhouse IPA).  I tried a pint of "You Mad, Bro?", billed as a straight farmhouse ale (5.8% abv) with white peppercorns and juniper berries added to the wort.
The tab for that one pint was $6.50, and a 32-oz. small growler could have been filled for $12.00. The last time I bought a half-growler fill here in Philly was for a really fine saison at Tired Hands, for $10.50.  I will have to write a separate post on this topic, but have to observe that many craft breweries seem to operate as if the precepts of economics don't apply to them.  Like cross-elasticity of demand.
If you can pack the house like Evil Genius did on a recent Saturday afternoon, first nice sunny day in a while. maybe your price point doesn't matter.
(Visited 04/08/17)

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