Saint Patrick’s Day weekend! What beer to drink?

Saint Patrick’s day 2014 spans nearly 4 celebration days as some toasted on Friday and will continue through the actual day on Monday. While Chicago colored the River green on Saturday, Indianapolis parallels New York City’s timing and the 34th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade is Monday, March 17th, 2014 in downtown Indianapolis starting at 11:30AM, with a festival on Vermont Street from 10AM to 3PM. While Guinness, Murphy’s, and perhaps Harp or Kilkenny are likely the most traditional beer there are plenty of craft beer options!

Just a block away from the festival, Flat12 Bierwerks has established a St. Patrick’s Day spot above the Elbow Room, one of Indy’s quaint older pubs, for a parade viewing spot and serving up a special beer called Kiss Me, I’m Irish Amber, the amber aged in a Jameson Whisky barrel! This is a small batch that may only end up available at this one spot on this one special day! There is a drawing at 10AM for the earlier birds to get a Flat12/Elbow Room gift pack. Flat12 also has their LactoMatic Milk stout at the TapRoom which is open Sunday noon-6.

Sun King has again brewed their delicious Ring of Dingle, a GABF gold-medal winning Irish dry stout which has been available in cans since February and will be available on draft at select pubs and restaurants throughout.

Daredevil has J.W.P. AMERICAN STOUT™ in distribution at limited pubs, a rich, silky espresso and chocolate flavor in an expressive American Stout.

Triton delivers with their Deadeye stout found around central Indiana.

Indiana City Beer has Shadow Boxer oatmeal stout as a flagship (and the earliest beer we tasted before the brewery opened) and is open Sunday until 4:00 at 24 Shelby Street a block from Washington.

Upland has Rad Red, And without listing every brew pub around, most have some version of a Stout or Red available for your celebrations.

If you can find this beer, 3Floyds has one of the top rated stouts according to BeerAdvocate. The Black Sun 6.5% ABV dry stout has a nose of coffee, roasted malts and piney hops.

One of the more interesting Craft Irish Style beer’s I’ve had recently was Boulevard Irish Ale (Friday, on tap, at the Alley Bar, Bloomington, but available in Indiana)which combines six kinds of pale and roasted barley to give it rich malty flavor and a nice light ‘toast.’

And then for the traditional, Indianapolis’ oldest Irish pub is actually a tiny spot at 2533 E. Washington Street, called the Golden Ace. Their St. Pat’s celebration is huge with tents, visits by the local priests, and plenty of family plus lots of music from Ireland. You’ll likely find Guinness on tap and not local craft beer. The music starts at noon and goes all day into the night. Details here

Of course, every Irish named bar from Claddagh to Kilroy’s, from The Brockway Pub on North Meridian in Carmel, to Mo’s in Noblesville, and even the German themed Rathskeller and the American themed Slippery Noodle downtown will help everyone squeeze out any bit of Irish heritage or just get a good pint!

We’ve been out and about in our hometown but will get out and about in Indy on the Big Day and bring back some photos.