On Sunday, July 16, 2017 we again crossed the Patuxent River to visit Calvert County. This was to be our first trip to Scorpion Brewing Co. (click here to see their complete listing in our Food & Drink Business Directory), in Owings, Calvert County. They’re 14.25 miles east of us in a straight line, but 25 miles and 30 minutes by road.
They’re in a small industrial-park-like setting, about half-way between the Patuxent River and the Chesapeake Bay. The name of the business honors the USS Scorpion, a sloop-rigged, oar-powered artillery ship (the first of several U.S. ships named Scorpion over the years) that fought the British on the Patuxent River in the War of 1812. She was burned on August 21, 1814 near Pig Point on the Patuxent, along with the rest of her flotilla, to keep the British from capturing her. Today that location (if I have it correct — I suppose there could be more than one Pig Point) is just south of where Rte. 4 crosses from Prince George’s County into Anne Arundel County.
Scorpion Brewing tasting room
The tasting room has a bar with stools along with a table and chairs. There was a group of six or so folks already there, sitting around a table, laughing and enjoying themselves. From what we could overhear, they had gathered prior to a wedding. Ross Thompson greeted us from behind the bar. Thompson was very personable and we enjoyed chatting with him, asking questions about the business and the brews.
What one person loves, another may not.
The chalkboard behind the bar listed the available brews:
- HMS St. Lawrence 
- ESB (Extra Special Bitter)
- Treaty of Ghent 
- Oars Out Stout 
- Descent Double IPA (Indian Pale Ale)
- Rum Barrel Aged ESB (Extra Special Bitter) 
- Summers Welcome Session IPA (Indian Pale Ale)
We ordered three beers to taste: HMS St. Lawrence, Rum Barrel Aged ESB, and Oars Out Stout. Usually, we order four or five beers to taste. All too often, though, we have found we only like a couple of the beers on offer, so that experience no doubt influenced how many beers we tried this day. Please understand, I’m not saying other places we’ve visited make bad beer, it’s just a matter of personal taste. What one person loves, another may not.
Incredibly, we liked all three brews a lot — Scorpion Brewing really scored with our taste buds! The problem then became, which beer to take home. Too bad they didn’t have them all in cans or bottles. We brought a growler with us and decided to get the HMS St. Lawrence, which was very refreshing and quite appropriate for hot-and-humid summer days. If the other two pours had been available in smaller portions, we’d have bought some of them, too. Now we just wish Scorpion Brewing Co. was located a bit closer to us. ♦
- ^ The HMS St. Lawrence was the only British ship-of-the-line never to serve on salt water. She was built in Canada and served on Lake Ontario during the War of 1812.
- ^ The Treaty of Ghent was the agreement that ended the War of 1812, signed December 24, 1814 between the U.S. and Great Britain.
- ^ “Oars Out” or “out oars” is the order given to put your oars in the oarlocks and get ready to row.
- ^ The rum barrel used by Scorpion Brewing is from Tobacco Barn Distillery, in Hollywood, MD, St. Mary’s County.