In the beer world, Black Friday is hardly a day for shopping. It’s a day for sipping, the darker the better.
And it doesn’t get any darker than Goose Island’s Bourbon County Brand Stout, the rich, barrel-aged stout whose annual release is the equivalent of a midnight door-opening at Toys R Us.
Long lines will be forming at select locations offering treasured bottles of the silky but strong (14.5 percent alcohol) ale. This year, it’s being accompanied by three offshoots: Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout, made with El Salvadoran beans; Backyard Rye Bourbon County Brand Stout; and Bourbon County Brand Barleywine.
Locally, The Bishop’s Collar (2349 Fairmount Ave.) will begin pouring the stout and barleywine, with other Goose Island brands, at 11 a.m.
Meanwhile, bottles will go on sale at Monde Market (21st and Chestnut streets), Food & Friends (20th & Spruce streets), Hawthornes Café (11th & Fitzwater streets) and the Foodery (10th & Pine streets and 2nd and Poplar streets).
Black Friday events
The wait for these bottles is worth it, but there’s always another beer around the corner. Here’s your Black Friday Beer Planner.
BRU Craft & Wurst (1318 Chestnut St.) – Left Hand Fade to Blackout Friday, with Wake Up Dead, Pro Am Mr. Black Ale.
City Tap House (3925 Walnut St.) – Into the Black, with a $35 tasting of Russian imperial stout, Black IPA, Schwarzbier.
Kraftwork (541 E. Girard Ave) – Blackout Brunch.
Memphis Taproom (2331 E. Cumberland St.) – Everything Went Black, including Harviestoun Old Engine Oil, Yards Love Stout.
Resurrection Ale House (2425 Grays Ferry Ave.) – Black Friday with Victory Brewing, including Winter Cheers, Storm King.
Uno Chicago Grill (2910 West Chester Pike, Newtown Square) – Christmas beer tapping, with Affligem Noel, Scaldis Noel.
Shopping Mall beer guide
Can’t avoid the shopping malls on Friday? When you need a break, here’s your nearest good beer.
Exton Square – The Drafting Room (635 N. Pottstown Pike) is five minutes away, but if you can wait 24 hours you’ll be just in time for Saturday’s Wet Hop Harvest.
Franklin Mills –Uno Chicago Grill outlets throughout the region have done an excellent job upgrading their tap lists in recent years. There’s one at 789 Franklin Mills Circle.
The Gallery at Market East – Hike a block over to Reading Terminal Market for Molly Malloy’s or the Field House (1150 Filbert St.). In Chinatown, Bar-Ly (101 N. 11th St.) is pouring 60 drafts.
King of Prussia – Rock Bottom Brewery, near Sears on the lower level, is pouring fresh, award-winning ales from brewer Brian McConnell.
Montgomery – Iron Hill Brewery 1460 Bethlehem Pike, North Wales) is just down Rt. 309. Prism Brewery (810 Dickerson Road) is a little harder to find, but its taproom is worth the hunt.
Neshaminy – It’s Uno Chicago Grill (across the parking lot from Barnes & Noble) to the rescue again.
Oxford Valley – Miller’s Ale House (2250 E. Lincoln Highway) is nearby with a long but fairly generic beer list.
Plymouth Meeting – Cold Point Pub (inside Whole Foods) offers excellent bottles, taps and a funky flavor-adding Fusion Tower. Drive west to Capone’s Restaurant (224 W. Germantown Pike) for its annual Black Friday tap madness.
Springfield – Make your way to Media for a trio of Delco favorites: Iron Hill Brewery (20 E. State St.), Quotations (37 E. State St.) and the surprising Pinocchio’s Restaurant (131 E. Baltimore Pike).
Willow Grove Park – Brick House Tavern & Tap (2402 Easton Road) is just 10 miles north on Rt. 611, but you’ll find more interesting selection just a couple more minutes up the road at Otto’s Brauhaus (233 Easton Road) or Belgian-themed Iron Abbey (680 Easton Road).
Cherry Hill – Unless you want to brown bag it with a bottle from the fine selection at Total Wine (adjacent to the mall), you’ll have to hop in the car. Head south to the Pour House (124 Haddon Ave., Westmont) or west to Iron Hill Brewery (124 E. Kings Highway, Maple Shade), which also happens to be close to Moorestown Mall.
Deptford – Uno Chicago Grill (1162 Hurffville Road) will do the trick. Or head to Joe Canal’s Discount Liquor Outlet (1075 Mantua Pike) for its annual Black Friday sale. Brewdog Sink The Bismarck, that 41 percent alcohol Double IPA you might’ve heard about, is on the shelf.
Voorhees Town Center – You’re in luck, Iron Hill Brewery opened its newest location inside the center, at 13107 Town Center Blvd.
Concord – McKenzie Brew House (451 Wilmington West Chester Pike) is 10 minutes north on Rt. 202. If you’re staying in Delaware, make your way to Ulysses American Gastropub (1716 Marsh Road, Wilmington) for two dozen very good taps.