My trip to one of the rising stars in the craft beer world, Tired Hands, actually begins at a small Greek restaurant and bottle shop on the outskirts of Lancaster. I have an hour to kill, tumbler of Dirt Wolf in hand, shifting between the humming malt liquor coolers and the shelves of craft beer I’ve picked through ten times over. I wait with the other beer geeks and hipsters to score one of 24 available bottles of Goose Island Bourbon County Coffee Stout, wondering when the beer is going to be distributed as the chaotic blob of beer-ites grows bigger.
This is like every other big beer release I go to, full of beer nerds like myself that talk about how the exclusivity and hype surrounding beer releases is bullshit while actively participating in them. The irony is not lost on me, but I tell myself I’m above it because I’ll jump through whatever hoops and pay for the privilege once. Yeah…
While milling about, getting a gauge of what beer styles people are into and who can outdo each other for ultimate beer cred, I think someone claiming to have a Samichlaus from the early 90’s may take the cake, I end up talking to a young twenty something and a grizzled beer veteran. Both separately mention that the best brewery in the area, nay in all of PA and possibly beyond, is Tired Hands.
I heard of it, knew it was about an hour away from me, but never considered making the trip. I have a nice conversation about the brewery for the next hour, staying far past the buying time. I left there with a bottle of BCB Coffee Stout and a burning determination to drink the crap out of some Tired Hands. Less than a month later, I choose to skip one of my favorite annual food and beer expos (next year PA Flavor, next year) for a trip to the Tired Hands pub in Ardmore, Philadelphia.