Chocolate City Beer Closing Dec. 31st – ‘Dew Drop Inn’ not sure what will become of the space

2801 8 Street, NE

Well I wasn’t expecting to hear this today! I spoke with the folks opening the tavern Dew Drop Inn coming to the upstairs space and they say it is unknown what will become of that space. It will be decided in the coming month or so – stay tuned on that front. Thanks to all who emailed – from Chocolate City Beer:

“After three and a half years in business, Chocolate City Beer will be closing its doors and turning off the lights on December 31st 2014. We want to give a heartfelt THANK YOU!!! to all our supporters, friends and family, to our neighbors in Brookland, Edgewood and to the greater DC/DMV region. It was our pleasure to be a part of the local craft beer renaissance since 2011.
We will remain open for our regular Growler Hours both Saturdays December, 20th and 27th, as well as a couple TBA weekday nights approaching New Years Eve.

Our latest and sadly, last brew is in the tank, a New Brew: a heavily hopped Black IPA named GoodBye.P.A.- w/ Citra and Galaxy Hops and a strong roasted malt backbone.

Be sure to swing by, say farewell, pick up some Growlers of the last Cornerstone Copper Ale, Cerveza Nacional Black Lager and our swan song GoodBye.P.A.”

19 Comment

  • SusanRH

    Never like to see a small business close down, but can’t say I am surprised. I never really liked any of their beers and their cleanliness left a lot to be desired.

  • One of the few things I’ve learned so far as a homebrewer is if you don’t keep it clean, it won’t taste good. Too many ways to introduce too many off flavors.

  • I echo the sentiment. The beer was…not good.

  • Sorry, Chocolate City. I almost never ordered your beers after the first couple months of operation. They were perfectly OK, but just nothing I felt like ordering, especially as the local competition continued to heat up.

  • Sadly I have to agree with Susan. I liked the location and the owners seemed really nice, but their beer was never really very good. DC Brau isn’t so amazing so CC could compete a little, but with all the new breweries opening around town with really quality beers it was going to be hard for CC. Hopefully something cool will occupy that space. Maybe a better brewery.

  • Yeah, I echo the other commenters in that I never liked their beer. It was a distant third behind Atlas and DC Brau. Plus with other regional craft beers coming into the DC market hard, you really need to be good to last.

  • Not to pile on, but their quality control was not that good. Sometimes a beer would taste okay but the next batch of the same beer would taste awful. While they ended up not being the first brewery to open in DC, I think they were they were the first to begin planning to open. For that I appreciate their contribution to the ever growing beer scene in DC.

  • Not surprised in the least. As others have mentioned, their beer was pretty bad. So many other options out there rather than patronize this place

  • I liked the staff and the beer. I have taken many friends to sample and buy on Saturdays. They will be missed. Maybe my Chocolate City growler will become a collectors item.

  • Agree with all. Almost never ordered one at Looking Glass. Look forward to seeing what takes the place there.

  • brookland_rez

    Is this the beginning of the shake out of DC microbreweries?

    • No, it’s not. It’s a mediocre (at best) business failing. They were doomed from day one when they released 4 awful beers at their release party at RFD. Not to mention their terrible name for a brewery. I don’t see DC Brau, 3 Stars, or Atlas going anywhere anytime soon, especially as they all continue to increase their distribution. The verdict is still out on Hellbender since they’re still pretty new. And Right Proper is already expanding into a full production facility. Chocolate City was on tap at maybe 15-20 bars for the last few months….compare that to about 100 each for the other DC breweries.

      • brookland_rez

        Good. I like all the new breweries in DC. I agree with you, their beer wasn’t that good, and I haven’t really seen it on tap many places (Menomale is the only place that comes to mind).

    • Odds are high that every DC microbrewery won’t last. But different microbreweries will fail for different reasons. I never tried Chocolate City beer but most folks I know who are somewhat serious about their beer who have tried it have told me they did not particularly like that brewery’s product.
      If I were a DC microbrew, I would be more worried about the stats showing that beer drinking is on the decline, particularly with younger folks. I think that among beer drinkers there is an increasing population of folks who are serious about it – who have favorite breweries and brews. But the overall number of beer drinkers is either declining or growing less rapidly than it has been.

  • What the hell is wrong with you people! I will admit their beers varied in taste from batch to batch but the Cooper Ale was a solid goto beer. Also, one of my favorite DC beers/beer names came out of this little operation, the Mister Mayor Imperial Stout made with Marionberries.

    Also, people commenting that Chocolate City Beer is a bad name for a brewery in DC (ya know…the Chocolate City with the vanilla suburbs) are totally off base. I for one loved the name and its reference to the city’s history as a epicenter of African American culture and economic empowerment.

    I for one will be sad to see this little establishment go.

  • The tone of the comments on this post don’t reflect the Chocolate City I know. Tastes in beer vary, and I was, and still am, a big fan of their Copper Ale. I’ll be sorry to see them go.

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