Here, piggy piggy… DC’s National Harbor gets a taste of the Red, White, & Booze

Photo by Lindsay Hovermale

Few things in life can compare to sitting by the water on a warm day, enjoying a cold brew, and bold barbeque with good friends. On Saturday, June 16th this possibly perfect combination came to fruition at DC’s National Harbor, where the Trigger Agency’s BBQ, Bourbon, & Beer event provided all of the above and more to a flock of foodies, pit masters, bourbon distillers, and brewers. Those lucky enough to be granted Grand Poobah access got a preview of the event Friday night with about 1,500 of their closest friends before heading back for a full day of celebrating several of life’s delicious indulgences.

On the second day of the event, thousands were welcomed to enjoy samplings of savory treats from local vendors, beverages from local breweries and distilleries, and the usual merch available at many outdoor food fests. Upon passing through the heavenly gates to all things pork, attendees were given a tasting glass from which they sampled unlimited quantities of beers from local brewers, including Heavy Seas (formerly Clipper City) of Baltimore, Lancaster Brewing Company, Duclaw Brewing Company, and more. Crowd favorites were notably from Heavy Seas, with Sea Nymp, a fruity, light bodied beer perfect for that warm day, and Loose Cannon, an IPA perfect to pair with pork, proving the quality of the local brewer’s refreshing concoctions.

Dipping the Maker’s Mark glass

For those looking for something a bit stronger, bourbon tastes abounded, with representatives providing Maker’s Mark, Pappy Van Winkle, Knob Creek, Evan Williams, and High West Whiskey varieties in small,  manageable portions. While some guests may have preferred a larger pour, the smaller quantities allowed for the tasting of numerous selections without getting blotto.  Additionally, those granted VIP access had the option to get their glasses dipped in the signature red Maker’s Mark glass (see photo on left), a brief break from the many tastings, which ultimately led to a sampling of pickles, peppers, and pork rinds. The salty goodness of these delights, as well as gourmet cheeses and the ever important bacon, helped offset the boozy beverages of the day.

Most popular guys at the Harbor!

Aside from beverages and an abundance of bacon in the VIP Piggy Tent, everyone in attendance enjoyed the musical stylings of local artists, including the Baltimore-based Kelly Bell Band, giving guests a chance to sit back and enjoy a BBQ meal or get up and “shake it” with this bluesy group. Attendees were able to purchase meals from a fully-loaded set of vendors, including nationally known Famous Dave’s and locals Kloby’s BBQ. The real highlight of this meat-stravaganza was watching several whole hogs be broken down and served fresh off of the pig from outdoor kitchens throughout the Harbor.

BBQ, Bourbon, & Beer is an event held throughout the country, with stops in Cary, NC on August 3rd & 4th and in Nashville, TN on November 3rd remaining in 2012. With any luck, Trigger Agency will be back in the DMV area for yet another sold out weekend of pigs, pours, and partying.

Dining in DC’s contributor, Lindsay Hovermale provided event coverage for this post.

Look for more posts from Lindsay to get information on the special event and music scenes in DC and the surrounding areas. Follow her on Twitter @theycallmeHOVE and her forthcoming blog, Hunger Hierarchy.

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