City Brew Tours’ beer guides are interesting individuals who genuinely love beer. In celebration of their passion and dedication, we’ve begun a Guide of the Month tradition to honor one guide across all six cities who goes the extra mile to bring you to the best beer around! For the month of June, we’re celebrating Washington, D.C.’s City Coordinator, Isaac Bell.
Isaac’s title means that he is the point person for all other D.C. guides, answering questions and ensuring everything at our southernmost brew tour destination is running smoothly. He’s worked for City Brew Tours D.C. for a year and a half, but has resided in the D.C. metropolitan area for about 14 years now. In his opinion, this cross between New York City hustle and California chill is the best place to be, not to mention how stunning the city is. “I’m always in awe of our nation’s capital,” says Isaac, “it really is breathtaking.”
Isaac can remember his first day on the job, recalling how unsure he felt about retaining so much beer knowledge; however, he’s only proven himself and his capabilities since then. “I’ve learned more about beer than I even imagined there was to know, and I’m still learning,” he says. He maintains the goal of obtaining as much beer knowledge as his trainer knew a year and a half ago. “I’m closer now than I was then,” he says, “but still never want to stop learning.” As coordinator, Isaac is sure to mention his fellow D.C. guides and their undying commitment to acquiring beer knowledge as well: “Shout out to our D.C. staff, these guys and gals are the absolute best; their dedication to brewing and making sure they’re keeping up with ‘all the beers’ is admirable.”
Along with the beauty and attractions that D.C. has to offer is the craft beer, of course! Isaac is surrounded by the beer culture of D.C. not only while giving tours, but also in his down time. He admits that when it comes to beer, the possibilities surrounding its creation and consumption are most exciting to him. “I’m fascinated with the creation of beer,” says Isaac. “Man has accomplished many great things, but beer is top of the list.” He believes that brewing and cooking are similar; the knowledge and skill esteemed craft brewers and chefs alike possess is the result of training, practice, and inherent creativity. “I appreciate a good beer the way I would a great meal, it’s an experience,” says Isaac.
Like any craft beer lover, Isaac enjoys trying all his options, never landing on one favorite brew for too long. At the moment, though, he does like two beers worth a mention. “I’ve been getting down on Old Pro (a gose) from a brewery in our sister city, Baltimore, called Union Brewing,” he says. He’s also currently enjoying a brew from Capitol City, one of City Brew Tours D.C.’s brewery stops, called “The Machine,” a rye double IPA he describes as “phenomenal.” When it comes to actually consuming these beers, Isaac prefers to be somewhere on the water. If this isn’t feasible, then he loves drinking anywhere outdoors. But seriously, who doesn’t love some salty air, the sun on one’s face, and a brew in one’s hand? Isaac likes to keep it simple when providing beer drinking tips: “Try everything at least once, and drink what you like.”
As designated driver, Isaac is surrounded by craft beer on his tours without indulging in them. This never gets him down because he finds his job enjoyable for an abundance of reasons. Firstly, he finds it pleasurable to spend his time with others who love beer as much as he does, or have a genuine interest in learning about it. This fills the hours after his day job with endless conversations about something he loves while meeting many people along the way, whether they are tour-goers, brewery staff, or brewery frequenters. When asked if he had the greatest job of all time, Isaac answered affirmatively: “It’s up there.”
The Day Off
On his day off, you can find Isaac brewing, drinking, adventuring, “loving up” on his two English Bulldogs, or as he puts it, “Just generally living the dream.” A beer and dog lover–he’s an all-American D.C. resident for sure! Lucky for us, Isaac has chosen to share his current favorite home brewing recipe that makes a kettle soured gose. Check it out below, and be sure to let us know how you like it!
5.5 gallons/60 minutes
4.5lbs Wheat (US)
4.5 Pilsner (US)
lactobacillus (I’ve had success with Wyeast 5335, but do you) YMMV
.25 Sorachi Ace @ 60 minutes
.75 Sea Salt @ 10 minutes
.75 Coriander Seed @ 10 minutes
Wyeast 2565 (Kolsch)