‘Beer Freeks’ unite for one last night at the Yard in Santa Monica

On Wednesday, May 11, the Yard in Santa Monica will host Beer Freek #9 — the ninth and final installment of the beach-side gastropub’s inaugural series of rare beer tasting events. Like previous Beer Freeks, the event will pair six limited-edition beers of a similar style (in this case, Imperial Stout) with dishes by executive chef Chris “CJ” Jacobson. And while all of the previous events boasted some very special brews, Beer Freek #9 will include limited tastings (about 20) of one of the rarest and most celebrated beers on the planet — the 2008 vintage of Sweden’s Närke Stormaktsporter — which scored a perfect A+ on Beer Advocate.com.

Though the two 375 ml bottles of Närke Stormaktsporter might run dry before you can (learn to) say “Närke Stormaktsporter,” the Yard has plenty more in store. Sean Norris, who co-owns the restaurant with Jeff Decker, will pour three 22 oz. bottles of the 2009 Dark Lord Imperial Stout by Three Floyds Brewing Company– a beer whose annual release is to the Chicago area what the February release of Russian River Brewing Company’s Pliny the Younger is to California. Like Pliny the Younger, the Dark Lord rarely travels beyond the Rockies.

Norris will also pop a few unique bottles that sound like they belong on Animal Planet:  Foothill Brewing Company’s Olde Rabbit’s Foot (Norris and bar manager Blake Landis’s personal favorite — a Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon barrel-aged Imperial Stout brewed in collaboration with Olde Hickory Brewing Company and the Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery); Mikkeller’s Beer Geek Brunch Weasel (an Imperial Oatmeal Stout brewed with Vietnamese cà phê Chồn– coffee beans harvested from the droppings of weasel-like civets in Southeast Asia that are among the most expensive in the world); and Ballast Point Brewing Company’s Sea Monster. He’ll also bring out Portsmouth Brewing Company’s Kate the Great, a Russian Imperial Stout from New Hampshire.

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