After a long day of judging and festival drinking last Saturday in Chicago, we dragged our weary palates to Haymarket Pub and Brewery to sample Pete Crowley’s wares the following evening.
The brewpub was crowded, and I felt a little out of place, since I wasn’t wearing a Chicago Bears jersey (it was game day), but in the back bar, life was a little more tame, and I found myself chatting with the Drinking and Writing sort that I’d heard so much about (Haymarket is the home of the Drinking and Writing Theatre).
With the theatre on premises for performances, I was reminded of Bertoldt Brecht’s quote: “Theatre without beer is just a museum.” Indeed, many brewpubs are more like museums, but Haymarket-as is the case with some of my other favorite breweries-has a deeper sense of life contained within. I was not sipping brews in a museum. I was living on a deeper level of performance art. Inexplicable, but perceptible. Life lived well and right, with and within a beer and good people, somehow.
Pete’s beers made this intangible good life easy to grasp.
I worked my way through samples of his Belgian Single, Dubbel and his GABF gold medal-winning Angry Birds Belgian Rye IPA, as well as the Double IPA. While these beers all flashed brilliance, it was the Saaz-alicious Speakerswagon Pilsner that really did it for me. My drinking legs were tired, and I just needed something refreshing and life-breathing. Along with Pete’s friendly and generous nature, the Pils really satisfied and made for a nice finish to a whirlwind trip to the Windy City!