Late Night Bites: Sharp Edge with the Ladies Beer Circle

Earlier this summer, while looking for a place where we could enjoy quality brews after work, our Ladies’ Beer Circle discovered Sharp Edge Wednesdays.

Of course, we all knew about the Sharp Edge previously; anyone who lives in the city and even remotely qualifies as an occasional beer aficionado has heard of the Sharp Edge. Known for its plethora of drafts, augmented by an extensive selection of bottles, the Sharp Edge Beer Emporium in Friendship has a long-standing reputation among beer lovers in the city.

What I didn’t realize was that since the last time I found my way to the Sharp Edge, they have since opened several additional locations throughout our metro area, and have instituted a half priced craft drafts special on Wednesdays.

That’s right, Wednesdays. Not happy hour on Wednesdays, or for some limited number of weird hours on Wednesdays, but all day Wednesdays. And that’s a full half price off every draft on their craft list. That makes it the single best beer special we’ve found.

The craft list features upwards of thirty beers (check out the current beer menu online); in the time since we’ve been going there it appears that some beers (perhaps the most popular) are kept on tap perennially, whereas other beers show up seasonally and/or occasionally and then are replaced by new selections when the keg runs out. The drafts on the craft list at regular price are not cheap, ranging from $4.50 (for Yuengling? That’s extortion) to $6.50 for the bulk of their selections, with some special beers being as much as $8, $9 or even over $10. Thus, one can see why half price nights are such a find. We can enjoy some pretty awesome craft brews at what is fundamentally 2 for 1 (and two is usually all I can drink since they close at midnight during the week)!

When we go to Sharp Edge on Wednesdays, we usually meet up when I get off work, which means around 10 or 10:30pm. This means that our meetings of the Ladies’ Beer Circle typically fall during the Sharp Edge’s nightly half priced food specials, including deals on wings, appetizers and pizzas. And a good thing, too, as many of their munchies are also pretty darn expensive at regular price.

As far as beer specials are concerned, the Sharp Edge wins hands down in terms of quality for the price. The food specials… well, it’s not quite as enthusiastic a recommendation. As I mentioned, the appetizer prices are rather expensive to begin with, so the half price special takes them down to what I consider ordinary prices for bar food.

Some of the appetizers we’ve found enjoyable, if nothing to write home about. The Mediterranean nachos (basically a spinach artichoke dip) and the Double Dipper plate have served us well, especially the later when ordered with the option of avocado salsa (which is fundamentally a tasty guacamole). The fried appetizers haven’t been as great. We’ve had bad experiences with the boneless chicken wings and the fried provolone wedges. Other fried items have been okay; the fried pita wedges that come with dips have never given us trouble, and I recently had an order of sweet potato fries with no ill consequences.. but we are left reluctant to order chicken bites or provolone again.

But our Ladies’ Beer Circle is looking for precisely that: beer, not dinner. We keep going back to enjoy the best beer special in town!

Sharp Edge Beer Emporium on Urbanspoon

The Ladies’ Beer Circle

Earlier this summer, an important cultural institution formed right under my nose. It was a balmy Thursday night in mid-May; accompanied by very little fanfare, I met up with Sabrina, one of my best friends from college, and Dayle, one of my best friends from high school, at Sidelines for a beer. Unbeknownst to any of the three of us, a tradition was born… thenceforward we would look back on that day as the very first meeting of the Ladies’ Beer Circle.

Except that Ted came along, too… and I drank whiskey and diet… but it was the first time the three of us met up for drinks…

And we vowed that night to meet up again at the Sharp Edge, and thus I count it as the snowball’s roll in the venerable tradition that is now the Ladies’ Beer Circle.

The mission of the Ladies’ Beer Circle is to cultivate among the three of us opportunities for the appreciation of good beer… hopefully at cheap prices. The Ladies’ Beer Circle, however, is not an exclusive organization, and we do not discriminate against men (whew! right?). Ted is a frequent attache to the Ladies’ Beer Circle, Nik has shown up on occasion, even Roger came along once (though, mostly against his will because circumstances of transportation required his presence). Other ladies are more than welcome to participate in the circle, and men are always welcome to show up and chime in their opinions on beer… though, they can never truly be part of the Ladies’ Beer Circle by virtue of its very nature and founding principles.

Well, okay… we don’t really have a mission statement, or any founding principles contingent on our being ladies… but we came up with a moderately cool name, right? And we’re not going to change it just because some men want to show up and drink with us sometimes; we’re certainly not going to discourage men from showing up, though, since in most documented cases the presence of men we know does not decrease our enjoyment of beer, and on select occasions has been known to increase our enjoyment of beer.

So far, we have two regular haunts for meetings of the Ladies’ Beer Circle: The Sharp Edge on Wednesdays and Sidelines on Mondays. Each week, a consensus of us three core members determines where we will meet. Why, then, is there a particular day associated with a particular location? Because that’s when the bar has discounts and specials enabling us to enjoy great beer at a reasonable price (we aren’t wealthy Ladies of Leisure, after all). Such things are easy enough to find around happy hour, but all three of us work odd hours and often aren’t able to get to the bar early enough for happy hour specials. Most other beer appreciation societies we’ve found schedule their outings during hours when at least one of us is at work. And so our remedy has been the de facto founding our illustrious Ladies’ Beer Circle.

Stay tuned for more details on our adventures in beer!