Mardi Gras and other Beeronaut highlights: February 20 to 23

I've pared down the list a little bit, just to highlight Mardi Gras celebrations that involve a deal on craft beers. But be sure to check in, and make reservations with, your own favorite bistro. A fuller list with beer tastings and tappings is now hosted as a calendar feature on

Monday, February 20

3:00 p.m. • Special Tappings: Rare Dogfish Head Beers!
Hopleaf, 5148 N. Clark St. Chicago (773) 334-9851
Hopleaf is pouring a whole bunch of hard to find beers from Dogfish Head. Included: Faithful Pearl Jam 20, Bitches Brew, Pangea, Fort, World Wide Stout, 120 Minute IPA, Hellhound on My Ale, Noble Rot, Palo Santo Marron, Burton Baton, ta'Henket, and Midas Touch. Other Dogfish Head beers available in bottles: 60 Minute IPA, 90 Minute IPA, My Antonia, Raison D'etre. All tapped at 3 PM for opening. We have plenty and some will pour through the week. Who cares about President's Day when it is Dogfish Head Day! First and second floor bars.

6:00 - 9:00 p.m. • Two Brothers Circus Penguin
Two Brothers Tap House, 30W315 Calumet Ave., Warrenville, IL 630-393-BEER
Originally designed to be a meet and greet with the brewers, Monday night will now be an evening of hanging out, eating pizza and watching action movies with the brewers. Come be one of the first to try Circus Penguin, a pale ale brewed with organic beets and blood oranges. Tuxedos welcome.

6:30 p.m. - 1:00 a.m. • Der Drei Floyds Überfall
Fountainhead, 1970 W. Montrose Ave., Chicago 773-697-8204
Wiederbeseelte Leiche, Grosse Katzen & Schwarz Einhorn Akh Main!! Monday, we will be attacked by three monster beers from 3 Floyds: Das Kleine Schwarz Einhorn, Tiger Jelly, and, on Cask - Zombie Dust!! Zombie dust will be tapped at 6:66:00 p.m.! We will also have bottles of Bitch Please available. Facebook info.

7:00 p.m. • Tickets on sale for Map Room Beer School
The Map Room, 1949 N. Hoyne Chicago (773) 252-7636
Tickets go on sale this evening starting at 7 p.m. Cash only, maximum 2 tickets per purchase, and first come-first serve until all tickets have been sold. Greg Browne, brewmaster at Mickey Finn's Brewery in Libertyville, guides us through the nuances of beer and its appreciation. Next class - Saturday, February 25, 6 pm. Topic: Wild Beers. Limit, 45 people. Price, $25 per person.

Tuesday, Feburary 21

5:00 p.m. - Close. Moonshine's Mardi Gras Cajun Festival
Moonshine Brewing Co., 1824 W. Division St., Chicago (773) 862-8686
No need to head south to New Orleans for Mardi Gras—capture the same authentic experience at Moonshine Brewing Company on Fat Tuesday. The Urban Roadhouse presents the ‘Cajun Crawl.’ Chef Matt Wilde is one of the only chefs in Chicago ordering fresh, live crawfish direct from Louisiana for the occasion. For only $7 per half pound basket, or $12 per pound, it’s all-hands-on-deck for peel and eat crawdads! Guests can put out the fire with Moonshine’s legendary micro brews ($5) or authentic, freshly-made Hurricanes ($6) using a recipe straight from a Moonshine friend at world-famous Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop Bar – Bourbon Street’s most iconic saloon known to be the oldest in the U.S. The Crawfish Boil baskets will also include corn, mushrooms, carrots and lemon wedges. Fresh gumbo at $3 per cup or $5 per pound will round out your Fat Tuesday feast! Naturally, all bayou specialties can be topped off at Moonshine’s infamous Hot Sauce bar where you’ll find a bevy of rare, hard-to-find hot sauces like Devil’s Revenge or Acid Rain to help kick it up a notch! DJ Greg Bauer will set the mood to Cajun / Zydeco beats all night long. Reservations are available by calling 773.862.8686. No cover.

6:00 p.m. • Founders All Day IPA Release Party
The Map Room, 1949 N. Hoyne Chicago (773) 252-7636
Meet Founders representatives at the Map Room for a release party for the newest addition to their year-round lineup, All Day IPA!

6:00 - 8:00 p.m. Hopslam Tapping Event
Public House, 400 N. State St., Chicago (312) 265-1240
Get ready to tap into one of Bell's Brewery's limited kegs, Hopslam! This limited edition beer will be available throughout the night, but stock is limited so early arrival is encouraged! Bell's Brewery beers also available for the night: Oatmeal Stout, Oarsman, and Golden Rye Draft and menu pairings available Book your table today by emailing

6:15 - 10:00 p.m. • Rock Bottom Orland Park Chef & Brewer's Dinner
Rock Bottom Orland Park, 16156 South La Grange Rd., Orland Park, IL (708) 226-0021
This is our first Chef and Brewer's Dinner of the year. Our theme for this dinner is Mardi Gras: Cajun fried alligator, paired with Erik the Red. Seafood gumbo paired with King of Hearts Imperial Red. Cajun pasta paired with German Pilsner. Fried crawfish salad paired with Finch's Cut Throat Pale Ale. Chicken Tchoupitoulas paired with Fallen Angel Belgian Dubbel. Dessert: a trio of New Orleans favorites paired with Procrastinator Doppelbock. Our "Welcome" beer will be served from 6:15 p.m. - 6:45 p.m., and dinner will start at 6:45 Tickets are $50 and can be purchased at

7:30 p.m. • Jason’s Favorite Beer Tasting at Bluebird
The Bluebird, 1749 N. Damen Ave. Chicago 773.486.2473
When people ask Jason Baldacci, our Beer Director, what his favorite beer is, he usually responds with a series of questions like these: What time of year is it? What time of day? What’s the weather like? Am I eating something? How much did I have to drink the night before? Well, since his birthday is the day after this tasting, he’s going to fess up and deliver a lineup of beers that are truly his favorites. Here’s what we’ll be tasting: Three Floyds Jinxproof Pilsner; Meantime IPA and Porter; St. Feuillien Grand Cru; St. Feuillien/Green Flash Biere de L’Amitie; Brasserie De Blaugies Saison D’Epeautre; De Proef Saison Imperiale; La Trappe Isid’or; Brasserie Dupont Moinette Brune; Left Hand Milk Stout Nitro; Dark Horse Tres Blueberry Stout; Lagunitas WTF; Jolly Pumpkin La Roja; Stone Brewing Vertical Epic 10-10-10; The Bruery Coton (2010 Release). $30/person, reservations are highly recommended. As always, we’ll putout some food to soak up the brews. Email to reserve space.

8:00 p.m. - 2:00 a.m. • Chicago's Official Fat Tuesday Celebration
The Southern, 1840 W. North Ave., Chicago 773-342-1840
The Official Mardi Gras party in Chicago! Come enjoy a Dixieland Band & Burlesque Dancers! $10 Low Country Boil, $3 Abita Beers and $3 Old Forester Shots. Experience unique Abita brews like the Oyster Stout! Facebook info

8:30 - 11:30 p.m. • Fat Tuesday Movie Night
Cigars & Stripes, 6715 W. Ogden Ave., Berwyn, IL (708) 484-1043
Celebrate Fat Tuesday at C & S! We will be making homemade gumbo and watching Easy Rider and Angel Heart. Bring your own beads. Facebook Info

Wednesday, February 22

5:30 p.m. • Omer tasting
Monk's Pub, 205 W. Lake St., Chicago (312) 357-6665
Stop in after 5:30 to taste OMER Belgian Tripel from Bockor! Adam from Artisanal Imports will be here too!

7:00 p.m. • Emmett’s Belgian Tripel tapping
Emmett's Ale House, 5200 Main St., Downers Grove, IL 630-434-8500
The Belgian Tripel is coming. Join us at Emmett's Brewing Co. for the first tapping of this highly anticipated Emmett's seasonal. Tickets are $18 per person (21+ please) and includes 2 Belgian Tripels paired with Artisanal Cheeses, Breads & Grilled Venison Sausage with Roasted Apple Chutney! Advanced Tickets are suggested as space is limited. Facebook info.

8:00 p.m. • Goose Island Invasion of Sheffield's
Sheffield's Beer & Wine Garden, 3258 N. Sheffield Ave., Chicago (773) 281-4989
Goose Island takes over the taps at Sheffields with Matilda, Sofie, Fleur, Pere Jacques, Pepe Nero, Marisol, Lolita, Green Line, Old Town Yard Helles Lager

Thursday, February 23

Piece Moose Knuckle Barley Wine party
Piece Brewery, 1927 W. North Ave., Chicago (773) 772-4422
We will be tapping our 2012 barley wine, Moose Knuckle, as well as featuring barley wines from our friends' breweries.

6:00 - 10:00 p.m. • Cole's/Two Brother's Final Hoodwink Party
Cole's Bar, 2338 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago (773) 276-5802
Hoodwink is a dark sour ale that is part of Two Brothers' Project Opus series, where we challenge ourselves with new and unusual tastes. The beer has complex sour notes that pair brilliantly with the dark malt character. Cole's Bar in Chicago's Logan Square neighborhood will release our final 1/6th barrel of this beer.We're tapping the keg at 6:00 p.m. and once we kick this keg, the beer is gone for good. The beer will be extremely limited but we'll have plenty of other delicious Two Brothers beers for you to try. Don't miss your chance to try it. Facebook info

6:00 p.m. • Tap This!!!! Beer & Food Trucks at Fischmans
Fischman's, 4780 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago (773) 545.0123
What an amazing turnout we had Feb 9th, thank you to all who helped get the word out there. So who is ready for Round 2? We will be tapping Bell's Hopslam & Avery Maharaja at 6:00 p.m.  Food Trucks: we’re bringing you more food! 6:00-7:00 The Southern Mac & Cheese, 5411 Empanadas, The Wagyu Wagon, GiGi’s Bake Shop. 7:30 - till the food runs out: Duck N Roll, Taquero Fusion. Live Music: Big Dog Mercer! Website.

7:00 p.m. • All Things BrewDog
Kinderhook Tap, 8005 Oak Park Ave., Oak Park, IL 708-434-0373
Join us as we serve up some of BrewDog's amazing brews from Scotland: On Tap: Sam Saint, Punk IPA, Harcore IPA. In Bottles: Basrah and Bitch Please (collaboration with Three Floyds).

7:00 p.m. • Dogfish Head Bitches' Brew tapping
The Tap House Grill, 6010 South Cass Ave., Westmont, IL (630) 541-8840
We’ll be tapping Dogfish Head’s homage to Miles Davis’ jazz classic, Bitches Brew. This beer will not last long so get here early!

7:00 - 10:00 p.m. • Hammer of the Gods 1st Anniversary Special
Three Aces Chicago, 1321 W. Taylor St., Chicago 312-243-1577
We are celebrating the 1 year anniversary of the burger pairing collaboration between Three Aces, ManBQue, and New Holland Brewing with the return of HAMMER OF THE GODS The Burger: Pretzel Bun, Bacon Jam, C&D Grass Fed Beef, 3 year White Cheddar, Caramelized Onion, Shaved Porchetta, Garlic and Hops Pickles, Mixed Farm Greens, Red Onion, Bourbon and Chicken Liver Pate, Fried Egg, and Garlic Aioli The Beer: Imperial Hatter. A robust renovation of the India Pale Ale. Assertive dry-hopping provides an aromatic telltale nose, indicative of the bitter symphony to follow. Bold hop character with lively grapefruit and citrus notes. 20° Plato, 9.4% ABV $25. Facebook info.

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    Mark McDermott

    Writer, trivia maven, fan of many things. I thought to learn all there is to know about beer as a way to stay interested in learning. It is my pleasure to bring Chicago's craft beer scene to you.

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