Monday, June 22, 2009

Another BEERFEST, in the books

Saturday was Draft Magazine's Craft Beer Festival. A beerfest for some rare, and special beers. How could I pass an event up like this? I was planning to head up north for the Made in the Shade Beerfest, but I have been there, and done that. Although, I will continue to go there, and do it again, the Craft Beer Festival was going to be different. And the beer didn't disappoint.

How about I just get to the list.

Dogfish Head - Sahtea. I watched the video on the website. I cringed as I watched Sam try to scoop up the molten rocks with a shovel, and drop them in a bucket. All I can say it that I hope OSHA never watches that video. But how was the beer? Good! I liked it. It was a different tasting beer. I tried to label it with a style, but I just couldn't do it. I could taste the berries, which Dogfish Lou told me were Juniper berries. It had a nice mouth feel, and was smooth for a 9% beer. Then again, most Dogfish Head beers are. I really enjoyed it. I am planning on buying a couple bottles. One to drink, and one to age.
Grade: 4 burps

Flying Dog - Woody Creek White. As soon as I saw Flying Dog, I got in line. This was my first taste of their Summer Seasonal. Normally, I am not a big fan of Belgium style beers. However, this one I liked. It was light, and crisp, with a nice citrus flavor. It wasn't over the top like I would have expected. It was just right. Dare I say, a session white?
Grade: 4 burps

Avery Brewing - 15th Anniversary Ale. Wow, how can I describe it? "Funky"? Yes, that is the word, funky. Can I tell you that I didn't like it. Well, lets say that I didn't enjoy it. It had a sour like taste, and a strong one. I'm happy I tried it, but I won't buy it.
Grade: 2 burps

Great Divide - Belgica. A "Belgian Style Indian Pale ale". Ringing in at 7.2 abv, I enjoyed it. It is a different style, and had a bit more of a citrus flavor than I expected. The hops helped to even out the taste. I would say that it is an above average beer that I would drink from time to time. I would recommend that you try it though.
Grade: 3 burps

Lost Abbey - Brandy Angel's Share. Oh my God, I love this beer. The flavor is absolutely amazing. It is 10% abv. but so damn smooth. It must be all that malt and caramel that gets to party in the barrel for a year. This is officially my new favorite beer. But guess what, I can't get it. Nope, it is only available at the brewery. I am so upset about this. How can they tease me like this? So if you happen to be at the brewery, and feel it in your heart to buy a bottle, I will happily accept is as a gift. Hell, I'll pay you for it! Either way, if you can get your hands on it, Buy it!
Grade: 5 burps

Draft put on a good show. The beer was why we were there. But people had to pay $60 to get in. For me, the beer was worth it. However, it was promoted as a beer and food event. Uhmmm, I think I speak for 90% of the people when I say, the "food" just wasn't up to par. Sure, it was some nice, high quality cheese, and bread, and salami. However, I could only eat so many little cheese cubes, and cracker sized pieces of bread. The salami was good, but I had to put 3 slices together so it was no longer transparent. Imagine a see through pepperoni. If you were lucky, you were given 3 pieces to go along with your 6 or 8 cheese cubes.

Basically, the food line sucked! People were upset about it. Everyone thought there was going to be food to eat, not just samples from Hickory Farms. I eat more trying the free samples at Costco. Here we are drinking some serious high abv. beers, and no food....and no water. Yes, there wasn't any water either. I did see a few people who managed to find a glass of water someplace. Some of the breweries brought bottles with them. I watched Dogfish Lou give his own bottle of water to an older woman who obviosly needed it. What a guy.

Overall, it was a great event. I will make sure that I am there again next year. I just hope it isn't on the same day as the other beerfest. I hate missing a beerfest...even for another one.

I do have notes on another 12 beers in my little notebook. I will pick through the important ones and write about them in a day or so.



Brian P said...

I almost hate to tell ya this. The Angel's Share made it out of CA and landed in Philly. The bottles went quick and I wasn't lucky enough to get my own. However I did get to enjoy a health pour and it was amazing.

Good Burp said...

Crap! How did that happen? I think I am going to be forced to open my own store so I can get ahold of these beers.

At least we got to try it. That was something special.

Steve said...

There are STILL bottles of Brandy Angel's share sitting at stores in So Cal. I kid you not. How can that be you ask? Well, not sure if you are privy to the whole Lost Abbey carbonation issues, but these bottles were deemed non-carbonated and had the masses up in arms for refunds. But still, there are bottles of this sitting around beer stores.