I was excited for this night.  Its been awhile since I've been to the Church Brew Works and have missed the place.  It is actually the first place my wife and I went to the night we moved into Pittsburgh over 10 years ago.  We had heard so much about this place and it doesn't disappoint.  The first thing is that this is a renovated church and is just beautiful inside and out.  The first time you go you feel a little confused whether you should be there to confess your sins or to belly up to the bar.  I really like this aspect of the brewery the most.  It is an incredible location/environment.  Beautiful wood work throughout and if I'm not mistaken it was all wood used from inside the church to make a lot of what is used.  The vats of beer are nicely stored in the front of the church (is this the alter).  Its gorgeous.  The next thing you should really focus on is their food.  It is tremendous.  They make great pizzas, awesome chips, appetizers, ect.  The food is incredible.

Lastly the beer, unfortunately, this place hits my point on microbrewery restaurants on the head.  Most I've been to can make great food OR great beer... but never both for some reason.  I have been to a few where they have made the exception but the Church just doesn't do that for me personally.  They have a huge selection of beers.  My wife got the sampler and had at least 8 4 oz pours of different styles from IPA, Stouts, Light Lager, ect.  Out of those 8 I really didn't care for many of them.  They all have some good qualities but they just aren't TOTALLY for me.  Luckily the Irish Red that I ordered separately I thought they nailed it.  The Irish Red was a seasonal brew for St Patrick's Day.  It was nicely balanced beer with nice malty sweetness and a mild hoppy flower sweetness.  It was actually really good.  All told this was a great beer to drink and sit and catch up with my buddy's from high school.

Yep, my friends met us here a little later that night.  So, we spent the night catching up on old stories past of St Patrick's Day parades.  We have had 11 years of parades under our belt.  My buddy Dave being the ONLY one of us that has had his card punched for coming EVERY YEAR.  I've probably missed 3-4 at least believe it or not.  So, the stories of course consisted of the typical who passed out first when, who got lost that one year, when I left Dave in Fat Heads to go to get a sandwich, some pizza box fights with a homeless guy, random girls, Scone Lady, you name it.  The list goes on.  And we begin preparing ourselves mentally and physically for the next day.  We plan to meet around 9 or 10 at Oyster House the next morning and part ways.  Always nice catching up with the boys!

On a separate note, I would be re-missed if I didn't mention that one of the guys contributed to the 365 challenge by bringing me about 8 beers from the Richmond Virginia area that he lives in.  I am always very very grateful for these types of gifts!  THANK YOU VERY MUCH Aaron.


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