The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has led to many bar and restaurant closings, but some beer-centric spots are forging ahead with opening. One such beer bar, NRG’s Shelter, opens Thursday, September 24, as part of The Roost, at 1401 Potomac Avenue SE. The initial plan for Shelter was to feature fifty-ish draft lines, half of them pouring beer under 5% alcohol by volume, but the pivot to cans by breweries and restrictions on space have truncated the beer menu.
“However, the pandemic has dictated a lot of what’s currently available – as I’m sure you’re aware, many brewers have been forced to slow production of kegs/casks in favor of bottled/canned offerings. That said, as soon as more opportunities arise, we will be able to grow our list going forward. The opening list is also a bit tighter; due to limited seating we want to ensure the draft and cask offerings consumed onsite are as fresh as possible,” notes NRG Communications Director Molly Hippolitus.
Nevertheless, NRG Partner Greg Engert kept the lower-ABV theme intact, with nearly half the beer menu under 5%, including Jester King’s Le Petit Prince, which claims the lowest at opening at 2.9%. In addition, Shelter will start with four lagers on side-pull, none over 5.4%. But enough about what we want. You want Aslin pastry stouts, Other Half hazy double IPAs, and Drekker cramming so much fruit puree into a beer it permanently stains the lines. Well, Shelter has that, too.
The bar is an indoor-outdoor space, with over twenty outdoor tables, and a capacity of one hundred people, which will help with physical distancing. If there’s a silver lining to <motions to everything> all of this, it’s that new rules in the District allow bars and restaurants to sell alcohol as retail establishments. You may have used the Churchkey Beer Shop, part of Neighborhood Provisions. This will continue at The Roost, with a selection of beer, wine, and spirits for to-go sales.
Shelter, the new beer bar (which will instantly be the one of the 2 best beer bars in DC’s eastern quadrants) from @NRGRestaurants in @theroostdc opens tomorrow, I overheard @birdfliu (I think) telling another random person walking by. pic.twitter.com/hp3VgYxILU
— Barred in DC (@BarredinDC) September 23, 2020
If you’re not into beer, worry not (and also, why are you on this site???), Shelter serves cocktails, many of them lower proof than what one might expect, and natural wines, which often clock in a few percentage points lower in alcohol than those with more, ahem, intervention.
For food, a Red Apron and a new NRG venture, Hi-Fi Taco, are expected to open by the end of the month; The Roost’s coffee shop, Cameo, has food available until 2pm.
Behold, Shelter’s opening beer menu:
SHELTER OPENING DRAFT & CASK LIST
SCHÖNRAM / HELL / Helles Lager / Germany / 5.0% / 42° / Side-Pull / Becher / 16 oz.
OCELOT / WITCHING HOUR / Märzen / Virginia / 5.4% / 42° / Side-Pull / Krug / 20 oz.
ÚNĚTICKÉ PIVO 12° / Czech Pilsner / Czech Republic / 4.9% / 42° / Side-Pull / Flute / 13 oz.
TRAUNSTEIN / 1612ER / Kellerbier/ Zwickelbier / Germany / 5.3% / 42° / Side-Pull / Stein / 20 oz.
Bold, Herbal & Citric
BELL’S / LIGHT HEARTED / Session IPA with Centennial & Galaxy Hops / Michigan / 3.7% / 42° / Becher / 16 oz.
MAINE / DINNER / Double IPA with Citra, Falconer’s Flight, Mosaic & Simcoe Hops / Maine / 8.2% / 48° / Snifter / 13 oz.
Soft & Juicy
BLUEJACKET / FORBIDDEN PLANET / American Blond Ale with Galaxy Hops / Washington, DC / 4.2% / 42° / Flute / 13 oz.
THE VEIL / IDONTWANTTOBU^3 / Hazy IPA with Citra & Mosaic Hops / Virginia / 6.9% / 48° / Becher / 16 oz.
TIRED HANDS / ALIEN CHURCH / Hazy IPA with Mosaic, Citra, Chinook, Centennial & Columbus Hops (Anchorage Collaboration) / Pennsylvania / 7.0% / 48° / Becher / 16 oz.
CUSHWA / BILLABLE HOURS / Hazy Double IPA with Bru-1 & Topaz Hops / Maryland / 8.0% / 48° / Snifter / 13 oz.
OTHER HALF / ALL CITRA EVERYTHING EXPERIMENTAL / Hazy Double IPA with Citra Hops / New York / 8.5% / 48° / Snifter / 13 oz.
Rich & Decadent
ASLIN / CRUMB SNATCHERS / Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout with Gingerbread Spice, Vanilla, Coconut & Almonds / Virginia / 16.5% / 54° / Snifter / 13 oz.
FRUIT & SPICE
DE LA SENNE / TARAS BOULBA / Belgian Blond Ale / Belgium / 4.5% / 42° / Tulip / 13 oz.
THIRIEZ / EXTRA / Saison / Belgium / 4.5% / 42° / Tulip / 13 oz.
SCHWENDL / SCHALCHNER WEISSE HELL / Hefeweizen / Germany / 5.2% / 42° / Grand Pilsner / 20 oz.
TART & FUNKY
JESTER KING / LE PETIT PRINCE / Table Beer / Texas / 2.9% / 42° / Tulip / 13 oz.
HILL FARMSTEAD / ANNA / Mixed Fermentation Ale with Wildflower Honey / Vermont / 6.4% / 48° / Tulip / 13 oz.
DREKKER / BRAAAAAAAANS: TANGERINE, MANGO & GUAVA / Fruited Sour Ale with Tangerines, Mangos, Guava, Vanilla & Milk Sugar / North Dakota / 5.0% / 42° / Tulip / 13 oz.
CANTILLON / FOU’ FOUNE / Fruit Lambic with Apricots / Belgium / 5.0% / 48° / Tulip / 13 oz.
SANTE ADAIRIUS / RECENCY EFFECT / Gin Barrel-Aged Mixed Fermentation Ale / California / 7.4% / 48° / Tulip / 13 oz.
BLUEJACKET / MEXICAN RADIO / Sweet Stout with Cocoa Nibs, Vanilla, Cinnamon & Ancho Chiles / Washington, DC / 8.0% / 55° / Becher / 16 oz.