Beerlass’s Guide to Beer Week

Beer Week has gotten so huge and so insane that it’s become almost impossible to figure out which things you want to do. Beerlass to the rescue. Philadelphia’s Beerlass (who some of you old schoolers remember as the Lovely Ginger) knows everything there is to know about local beer and Beer Wek, and was kind enough to let us know what some of the coolest events are this year. Here are her top recommendations (Except for nights when there is quizzo to be played. Then you know where you need to be. Food and Drink quizzo all next week.)

Saturday June 4th
Kite and Key 2 pm
Throwdown in Franklintown- watch local beer peeps (myself included) duke it out with over-sized boxing gloves.

Block Party at Varga Bar- Local Heroes at Philadelphia Bar and Restaurant

If you are one for cask-conditioned beers -King Pin starts at 3 pm at Standard Tap meanwhile Sister bar has “A firkin Riot” wit the coolest firkin apparatus the city has ever seen.

Or if you wanna ride a wave- Prohibition Tap Room has surf rock and beers from the rad west coast brewery Lagunitas featured.

Sunday June 5th

It’s bike race day- avoid it or embrace it. Kite and Key will be celebrating the annual championship race with Stone Brewing Co and tricycle races.

At night you know where you need to be if you’re a fan of The Wire, I mean Johnny Goodtimes. He will be hosting a special “The Wire” quiz while the bar sipps on beers from North Coast- one of my favorite breweries.

If you’re one of those quizzo players that has some money to burn. Good Dog is hosting an 8 course dinner with 8 different Iron Hill beers from 8 different brewers. It will be a special night of eating and drinking. If you’re looking for a nice civilized start to your day- You can join me at Kennett in Queen Village for a beer brunch 1-3.

Monday June 6th
If it’s not already sold out- 12 pm-Punk Rock and Finger Sandwiches with Dogfish Head at Nodding Head promises to be one of the week’s highlights. DFH’s Sam Calagione will be there prior to his visit to Resurrection Ale house at 3 for a Mustache contest where a Victrola will provide the soundtrack.

At night- Late night with Joe Gunn kicks off. There are no words to describe the hilarity that this hour provides. You are guaranteed to see people drink too much whiskey during beer week, see an eating contest, and of course a live musical guest. Kick off at 11 pm.

Friday June 10th
From 6 till 9 Brooklyn brewery will be at Fergies with a rare firkin of Irish Stout and a bunch of cheese and beer pairing will take place.

Also at 6 pm- since I know you all like a little competition. It’s the 4th annual firkin off between Sly Fox and South Hampton. This is a serious drinking competition. Last year a 9 gallon firkin was drained in 8 minutes. Pick a team and help a brewery out;)

Saturday, June 11th
Enjoy sour beers? Nodding Head is hosting Phreddie and the Four Phunks. Brewmaster Gordon Grubb has been stockpiling some of his reserved barrel-aged beers. Sour is the new hop. 3 pm.

Wanna a little physical fitness in your beer week? A few bars in Fairmount our hosting the 2nd annual “Beermuda Triangle” run from Bishops collar, to Kite and Key , to St. Stephens Green drinking craft cans of Oskar Blues and Sly Fox all the while. Set up a team. The team that drinks the most cans wins. Oh and there’s a prize for the first to the finish line too 2 pm.

Sunday, June 12th
For all the vinyl collectors out there- Prohibition Tap Room is hosting “kegs eggs and BYOV” (Bring Your own vinyl) brunch) from 12 till?

And Philly survives yet another beer week. The week ends with a karaoke bash called the TTUD (That totally unnecessary drink) at Fergies upstairs with a lot of brewery folk. Fergie LOVES karaoke. This has become beer week tradition. It’s one of the most memorable events of the week.

The Wire Quizzo at POPE

Getting excited about Sunday’s quizzo about the Wire at the POPE. A few notes about the quiz: I don’t like to do my specialty quizzes only for freaks who have seen the show 140 times in their basement (though those people should do fine at the quiz). As long as you’ve seen each episode of the show once, you’ll be able to do ok. That said, I won’t do anything cutesy like do a round on “Things that Rhyme with Wire”. It will be all inspired on the show itself, but I’ll be using more than just scenes from the show. There will be questions about Baltimore, about the soundtrack, about the booze McNulty and Bunk enjoy. I’ll be honest:  I plan on making this one of the best quizzes I’ve ever written. I simply have too much respect for this show to do anything less. It’s all in the game, yo.

Quiz is at the Pub on Passyunk East this Sunday, June 5th at 7 p.m.

RELATED: The 10 Most Intense scenes from the Wire.

Bounty Bowl Tonight!

Things are getting flat out ridiculous at the Rendezvous, where the Jams have been on such a hot streak that the bounty is now up to $45 . Any team who can knock them off gets a $45 bonus gift certificate in addition to the $25 they get for winning. And needless to say, all of the glory that comes with knocking off the Jams. On to the Black Sheep at 8 p.m. If you want to play with the big boys, tonight is the night to do it.

This week’s quiz is quite interesting. Several people last night were quite excited about the wild card round, saying that, “I normally don’t contribute much, but tonight you hit my wheelhouse.” So it’s gonna be interesting to see how it goes down. We had an upset at O’Neals last night and on a quiet night at the City Tap House, the Diabetics won their 5th straight, meaning we’ll have another bounty next week.

In addition, Koob and Kristy will be hosting a pop culture quiz tonight at Artful Dodger. Action starts at 9 p.m. Plenty of questions on music and fashion this week.

Lebowski Quiz, Sci-Fi Quiz, and a Quiz on the Wire This Week

A big week for special quizzes, all of which promise to be fun. On Thursday, Koob and Kristy will be hosting a Lebowski Quiz at Drinker’s in Old City as part of a Benefit for The Dude Hates Cancer. $5 at the door with all proceeds going to the charity, and then settle in for what promises to be a Lebowski nerdfest. I’m hoping we can talk Koob to dress up as Walter. He’s done it before. The pic above is of Tom Sellick’s D*** Duster, who won their quiz last week at Drinkers on Tarantino films.

On Sunday, Mike Minion is hosting a Sci-fi quiz. Since I sometimes consider Mike himself a work of science fiction, this quiz should be right up his alley. If you like Isaac Asimov and weird movies about robots from space, I think this is the quiz you’re looking for.

Also on Sunday, I’ll be hosting another quiz for beer week at the POPE. But this time, the quiz won’t be about beer. It will be about the best show in TV history, The Wire. I am extremely excited about this quiz. If you know your burners, re-ups, and hoppers, this quiz will be for you. More details later this week. Sheeeeeeeeeeeeeit.

10 Most Intense Scenes from the Wire

If you haven’t watched The Wire yet, do yourself a favor and get on it. Best show ever. Anyways, I decided to list my top 10 most intense scenes in the show. Links will send you to the scenes on Youtube. By the way, none of these clips is safe for work. What scenes did I leave out? Lemme know.

  1. Bodie shoots Wallace. I never forgave Bodie for this, even though I liked him otherwise. I can never watch this scene again. Seriously. I linked to it but I can’t watch the link. It was the most upset I got during the whole five seasons.
  2. Omar faces off with Brother Mouzone. Definitely the most “Dirty Harry” moment of the show. A lot of fun.
  3. “You gonna look out for me? You gonna look out for me, Sergeant Carver?” Heart-wrenching to see a trusting kid learn not to trust anyone, not even a well meaning cop.
  4. Frank Sobotka goes to talk to the Greek while haunting music plays. Then the Greek gets that fateful phone call, and we know what’s coming next.
  5. Bodie’s last stand. Bodie goes out like a soldier, and it serves as a reminder that even the most loyal corner boy faces a violent and premature death.
  6. Marlo has Prop Joe killed after Cheese sells him out. I was always a big Slim Charles fan, even more so when he took out Cheese. And I must admit that the one person I was most glad to see get popped was Cheese. He was right up there with Marlo, Maury (the lawyer), Clay, and Scott the reporter as the people on the show with no principles, loyalty, or scruples.
  7. Kima’s sting goes bad. Man, this is wrenching. I never really cared for the Kima subplot with her girlfriend and baby and everything (it just never really went anywhere), but I liked her a lot. My heart was pounding the entire scene.
  8. D’angelo taken out at the prison library. I was pissed about this one too, because D’Angelo was one of my favorite characters, and certainly one of the most dignified characters in the show.
  9. String and Avon stand off, and String admits what went down with D’Angelo. I love the silence at the end of this scene when there is nothing else to say. This was really the beginning of the end of the Barksdale clan.
  10. Snoop and Michael take a ride. The whole time we’re ready for Michael to get popped, but he’s a quick learner and turns the tables. I loved Snoop and all, but I was glad it was her and not Mike. I just wish Mike had turned into something besides the next Omar.

Seinfeld, the Wire, and Sports: Quizzo News and Notes

Just a couple of quick notes as we head into the weekend. First of all, I’ll post my wife’s round a little later. In case you were curious, she’s a schoolteacher, not a marine biologist, but she minored in marine biology in college, so that’s why all the sea questions.

She was quite pleased when I told her that people did poorly on the round. She said, “Hanging around all your nerdy friends makes me feel kind of dumb sometimes. I’m glad to find out I know a few things they don’t know.”

Seinfeld fans: Keep in mind that Mike Minion is hosting a Seinfeld quiz this Sunday at 8 p.m. at the Ugly American. I’d wear my beach cologne there if I were you.

Fans of The Wire: I am extremely excited to announce that I will be hosting a Wire quiz at the POPE on Monday, June 6th, as part of beer week. I can’t tell you how exited I am about this quiz.  More details coming next week.

Sports fans: A couple of sports quizzes to look forward to this summer. Mike Minion will be hosting one at the UA in June, and I will be hosting one at City Tap House at some point this summer. No date set yet, but I’ll keep you updated. Also, please check out the latest on There’s a story on the site about Hall of Famer Robin Roberts and a 4th grader that’s gonna make your day.

City vs. City?: Me and Dicker from Denver are in talks about a city vs. city event for the summer. Hopefully we can put something together. I’ll keep ya updated.

Famous Ladies Week Starts Tonight

I’ve gotten a few comments that my quizzes tend to be a little “dude heavy”, with lots of questions about sports and famous men. Therefore, I’m going to try to mix things up this week, with questions about famous ladies, femme fatales, and fashion. But don’t worry, gentlemen, this quiz isn’t written for ladies exclusively, it’s primarily just questions about ladies. You’ll be fine. More importantly, it will give you an excuse to ask the cute girl at the bar for some help on the question about Coco Chanel. It’s going to be an interesting quiz. Action starts tonight at 8 p.m. at O’Neals. We then move to the City Tap House at 10:15 p.m. If any ladies have any ideas for topics you’d like to see this week, please drop them in the comments. Hope to see ya tonight!

UPDATE: This week’s wild card round will be “Things My Wife Knows That I Don’t”. Should be kind of fun.

Simpson’s Quiz on Sunday; More Nerd Quizzes to Follow

Hey folks, Mike Minion is gonna be starting up a string of specialty quizzes this weekend with a Simpson’s quiz. Here’s more info from the man himself:

Mike Minion here. Do you find yourself quoting Homer Simpson just a little too often? Do you ever ask yourself, “What would Kramer do in this situation?” Do your friends look at you funny when you say, “Live long and prosper”?  Well, now there’s a place where you can be among your own kind. Starting this Sunday, The Ugly American will be hosting a series of “Specialty Quiz” evenings.

I’m gonna cover all the favorites: The Simpsons, Seinfeld, Star War/Star Trek, Baseball (nerds LOVE stats!), Harry Potter, etc.  And there will be some surprise topics every now and then – but rest assured, they will be VERY nerd-friendly.

The quizzes will be on Sunday evenings at 7 PM, every other week.  First up: The Simpsons (Seasons 1-10)!  In   To kick things off on a high note, in addition to the normal prizes ($30 for 1st place, $20 for 2nd), some lucky team will win a GIANT Bart Simpson Pez dispenser.  And I’ll have some other give-aways to boot.

The schedule of topics for the the next few quizzes will be published later this week.   If you have any topic you want to see covered after this initial run, let me know.  Suggestions can be sent to

Looking forward to seeing LOTS of Simpsons fans this Sunday.  More details later this week.


Tripleheader Tonight

Lights out at the City Tap House last night. Literally. We were getting ready to start the quiz, when BOOM-out went the lights. The emergencies kicked on, but the crowd was too big to do an acoustic set, so we’re rescheduling for tonight. Action starts at 10:15 p.m. But first we hit our regular Wednesday spots. At the Rendezvous, there are several big time teams desperately in need of a Top 2 finish this week to get themselves back in the mix. Action starts at 6:15 p.m. $3 Victory Hop Devils and $2 Bud Lights. On to the Black Sheep, where after several months of people hanging from the rafters, we had a quiet crowd last week. This might be a good week to grab a table. Hope to see ya tonight!

Quizzo Bowl, Geek Bowl, and the Coldest Place on Earth

  • Several things to discuss as we head into the weekend. First of all, save the date: Quizzo Bowl VII will take place on Saturday, February 19th. More details to come in the near future.
  • Secondly, anybody that wants to go on the Denver Geek Bowl Trip let me know ASAP. Starting to make plans now. We’re headed out to Denver on the weekend of January 28th. So far we’ve got 8 guys representing Philadelphia. We’d love to round up 4 more and make two full teams (Their team max is 6).
  • Remember: Harry Potter Quiz is on Monday. Also, I am trying to put together a good team for the regular Monday night quiz at Westbury, where the bounty on Group W stands at $50. If anyone wants to play on Monday night let me know.
  • Congratulations are in order for The Missing Chums, who recorded a perfect 120 at the Black Sheep Wednesday night. In other news, Duane’s World for the 2nd straight week won by 1 year  in our final numbers question. This week, the question was “What year was Ulysses S. Grant born?” They guessed 1825, the 2nd Place team guessed 1818, and the answer was 1822. It doesn’t get any closer than that. Finally, great to see Dork Sided back in the building. After a long hiatus, they not only returned to O’Neals, they brought hell with them, as they scored 110 points in a big win.
  • On Thursday, the wild card round was Freezing Cold Weather. One of our questions was, “The coldest inhabited place on earth is Oymyakon, where it once got to -90 F, the coldest any inhabited place has ever gotten. In what country will you find Oymyakon?” The answer is Russia, and the above video is about the small town in Siberia that is so unbelievably cold. Here is an article in National Geographic about it.

Hire Johnny For Your Event

awards.gif“Luckily for us, every weeknight there is a Quizzo owned and operated by one Johnny Goodtimes, who combines a serious trivia obsession with the knowledge that these things are supposed to be fun.” – City Paper

“The Bob Barker of quizzo hosts.” –Onion A.V. Club

“Each time we have worked together Johnny brings fresh new ideas to the table and has been a pleasure to work with.” – Franklin Institute

Johnny Goodtimes, widely acknowledged as one of Philadelphia’s foremost entertainers, has entertained at the World Cafe Live, the Palestra, the TLA, and the Franklin Institute. His quizzo has been named Best Quizzo by Philadelphia Magazine, been named Philly’s best in the City Paper 6 different times and has been named the Staff Pick for Best Quizzo in Philly Style Magazine. He has hosted major events for crowds of 500, small private parties for groups as small as 15, and has entertained groups of every size in between.

Quizzo is an excellent team building exercise, as well as an excellent ice breaker for any company function, and Johnny is unquestionably the most experienced and most entertaining person doing it. His rates are extremely reasonable, he can custom make the event in accordance with your wishes, and he is willing to travel. He has done numerous weddings, corporate events, and holiday parties, and is happy to provide references.  If you want to guarantee a fun, captivating, and interactive performance for your next company function, contact Johnny today!

The Autumn Invitational Standings Are Posted as We Head Into the Final Week

autumninviteThe standings for the JGTAI through 7 weeks can be seen here, and wow, are things getting tight. The battle to be the 10th and Final team to have a chance at the $100 bonus prize is extremely close, with numerous teams within striking distance. Right now the Ear holds a one point advantage over the Exhausted Nihilists. But much more dramatic are the teams vying for a invitation at all. The 20th place team, the Inglorious Barristers, have 14 points.  8 teams are within one victory from tying them or getting ahead of them and getting a guaranteed invite. I am going to the City Tap House today to work on audio. I will also see exactly how many teams we can seat. We may be able to sit 22 or 23. But until I know for sure, the cut off point is 20. Which means that it all comes down to this week. Where’s your best shot of winning? I would say undoubtedly O’Neals. To be honest, things have been pretty remarkably quiet there the past few weeks. You get a good team together tonight, and I can all but guarantee a Top 3 finish. Your 2nd best shot? Ugly American. That’s not to say that the other venues are impossible. The City Tap House has had three different winners in the first three weeks. Both Black Sheep and the ‘Vous had winners who had 1 JGTAI point going into last week.

Of course, if you are on the bubble you can also all but assure yourself of a spot in the mix by earning some last chance points via the physical challenge on facebook. I am giving each team the opportunity to score up to 4 extra bonus points this week by posting pics of any of our previous physical challenges. So get your team together and get out to quizzo this week. We’re going to have a lot of fun on Sunday. I’d hate for you to miss it.

The Decision

jgtlebronNeedless to say, people all across Philadelphia have been wondering where Johnny Goodtimes will land on Tuesday nights at 10:15 p.m. But instead of just announcing it, JGT decided to get interviewed by Jim Gray so he could talk a bit more about himself. Here is the transcript of that interview, with the decision after the jump.

Thank you very much. Everybody is on pins and needles across the country, particularly those bars who are in the running for Johnny Goodtimes. Are you ready to go Johnny? Where is the powder?

What powder?

The baby powder you throw into the air before each quizzo.

I don’t do that. Someone could slip and fall on the powder and then I’d find myself in legal trouble.

What have you thought about this process?

This process has been everything I’ve thought and more. I enjoy any process that revolves around me, Johnny Goodtimes. Did I mention that I’m donating all of the money earned from this interview to  the Orphans of Oddfellows?

You weren’t able to be recruited because you went straight to Quizmaster from a job waiting tables while dressed in a colonial outfit. Have you enjoyed this recruiting process now?

I have enjoyed it. It’s been an unbelievable experience, a real humbling experience to be even to be in this position. But I’m sure it’s even more humbling for the bars that have had a chance to talk to me. 

How many people know your decision right now?

Not many. It’s a very, very small number. I probably could count them on my fingers.

One hand or two hands?

Well, I would use one hand to count the fingers on the other hand, so would that count as one or two?

When did you decide?

I think I decided this morning. I mean, I decided this morning, but I went day to day. I wake up one morning, it’s this bar. I wake up another morning, it’s this bar. I wake up another morning, and I can’t find my toothbrush. So then I go to Walgreens and buy a new one. And while I’m there I pick up some dog food. What was the question again?

So the last time you changed your mind was yesterday?

The last time I changed my mind was probably in my dreams. As real as it may seem. It was only in my dreams.

Who in this process, Johnny, have you taken advice from and who has had the biggest influence?

I’ve taken a lot of advice from my friends and family. And there was a guy in Rittenhouse yesterday that was mumbling something about government mind control. He seemed to know what he was talking about, so I took some advice from him. 

Would you like to sleep on it a little longer, or are you ready to make this decision?

That depends. Who would I be sleeping with?

Are you still a nail biter?

I’ve never bit my nails.

You’ve had everybody else biting their nails. So I guess it’s time for them to stop chewing. The answer to the question everybody wants to know: Johnny, what’s your decision?

In this fall, this is very tough, in this fall I’m going to take my talents to…

Continue reading “The Decision”