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Goodfriend and The Common Table Gush Over Lakewood Brewery

Lakewood Brewing tapped its first two beers for the public this past weekend to an enthusiastic crowd at Goodfriend. A bartender told me it was the burger restaurant's busiest day since it opened last year. Even last night the staff seemed especially giddy about the brew. Lakewood Brewing's Rock Ryder and Hop Trapp are a hot commodity at East Dallas' favorite horseshoe bar, and for good reason.

Rock Ryder is an impressively drinkable rye/wheat beer with a light blond color and a well pronounced peppery taste that lingers on your palate. I loved it. At 5.2 percent ABV it's almost a sessionable beer and I can see football fans settling in with a few hundred pints of the liquid gold this fall without a problem.

The Hop Trapp seems a little misnamed to me. Previously scarred by American style IPAs that are hopped into the stratosphere and taste like pharmaceutical marijuana smells, I'd thought the brewery's second beer would be aggressively bitter. It's not at all. Modeled after a true Belgian IPA, the beer clocks in at 68 IBUs, and it's more floral than face-puckering. I'm a hop-averse beer drinker and I loved this brew.

If you don't want to go to Goodfriend The Common Table is tapping both beers at 5 p.m. today. You can get a 20-ounce Hop Trap or Rock Ryder for $5 each. (They'll usually run you $7.) And stay on the lookout for the Temptress. Lakewood's third offering, an imperial milk stout running almost 9 percent ABV, should be out in a few more weeks.

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