Today’s infographic is still another poster about Oktoberfest, which began four days ago in Munich, Germany. This one is called How To Survive Oktoberfest with Your Liver Intact and was created by Accredited Online Colleges. It features a brief history of Oktoberfest and some tips for navigating the festival.
Today’s infographic is another poster about Oktoberfest, which began two days ago in Munich, Germany. This one is called the Down-Low on Oktoberfest and was created by Travel Insurance, which is an “online resource for travelers and people looking for more information on travel insurance.”
The closing event for SF Beer Week was again hosted by the Celebrator Beer News, who held their 25th Anniversary Party at the Oakland Marriott Convention Center on Sunday. Over 600 people attended the festival, which had a Mardi Gras theme, and 50 breweries were pouring their beer.
Yesterday was the 20th annual Toronado Barleywine Festival, the original SF Beer Week event, that predates our beer week by fifteen years. I arrived a little late, sad to say, because Porter had his little league tryouts in the morning, but for at least the fourth year in a row, my luck held. When I arrived, it was already in full swing.
The table already had a full compliment of all forty barley wines. Since Sean was looking to go roaming himself, I graciously agreed to take over table babysitting duties, which allowed me the opportunity to try every one of this year’s barley wines.
There were some very good, even great, ones, of course, and a number of decent beers, and a few that weren’t as good as one might have hoped.
But over all, I think my favorite barley wine of the day was Mad River’s John Barleycorn, which in many ways has become the epitome of an American-style barley wine for me, and seems to get better every year. Other stand-outs included Heretic’s Dead Weight, Moylan’s Old Blarney, Drake’s Jolly Roger and Anderson Valley’s Horn of the Beer. I also enjoyed Bear Republic’s Old Scoutter’s 2010, Berryessa’s Cliff’s Fiscal and Widmer’s Old Embalmer.
The back room, which is normally only used for special events (and Washoe’s) was configured in a new way this year, which seemed to allow more people to taste, with one side having long picnic tables and the other a place to stand and try the beers with a long table running the length to hold multiple barley wines. This also made the middle wider and easier to traverse than in previous years.
All in all, another great beer festival, with some spectacular barley wines. But if you didn’t get a chance to go on Saturday, don’t dispair, the barley wines will be there at least until Monday, and some will probably be hanging around a little longer, until they run out.
Tickets go on sale in a few minutes for the second annual Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Festival, scheduled to take place June 1, 2013. Beginning February 1, you can buy tickets online for the festival, one of the highlights of last year’s festival season. Check out my write up from last year’s inaugural event. It was a really great event last year. If you didn’t make it, consider attending this year’s festival. I’ll see you there.
Top brewers from around the nation and world will once again turn wine country into beer country with the return of the Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Fest in Paso Robles June 1, 2013—featuring 40+ craft breweries, rare beers, live music, local chefs, brewer Q&A sessions and more.
Tickets will go on sale on February 1, 2013 via www.firestonebeerfest.com. The event is hosted by Firestone Walker Brewing Company and held at the Paso Robles Event Center in partnership with the Paso Robles Pioneer Day Committee. Proceeds from the event benefit Pioneer Day, a local community celebration established in 1931.
“The Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Fest was born from a dream of creating a world-class festival featuring not only the best brewers in the world, but brewers whom we feel are leaders in the craft beer revolution,” said Matt Brynildson, Brewmaster at Firestone Walker Brewing Company. “This is a day where we can all put down our sales and marketing pitches and simply commune and share our beers and stories with people who are truly interested in craft beer.”
Last year’s inaugural fest sold out quickly and was widely praised as one of the nation’s can’t-miss craft beer events, with attendees embracing the casual open-air setting, access to rare beers and opportunity to hang out with leading brewers.
The lineup for the 2013 Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Fest is still being finalized, but attendees can expect 40+ breweries, 20 restaurants and three bands. The event will run from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Last year’s participating breweries included Three Floyds and Sun King from Indiana, Founders and Bells from Michigan, Mikkeller from Denmark, Yo-Ho from Japan, Dogfish Head from Delaware, Southern Tier from New York, and several California breweries, including Russian River, Stone, Lost Abbey, The Bruery and Golden Road.
Each participating brewery will pour one “sessionable” beer registering less than six percent alcohol by volume, as well as one rare specialty beer. Brewers will be on hand to talk to attendees about their beers.
The cost is $75 per person, and attendees must be 21 years or older. Admittance includes complimentary tastings of beer and food while supplies last, as well as a logo snifter glass. Ticket availability is limited.
“The brewers really go all out at this event,” Brynildson said. “You will recognize some of the beers, but you can also expect the unexpected.”
This past weekend, in the middle of a road trip visiting breweries, I attended the 17th annual Mammoth Festival of Beers & Bluesapalooza. It was my second time at the music and beer festival, and it’s a really great event. It’s sponsored, in part, by local brewery Mammoth Brewing. The downside is, of course, that Mammoth Lakes, California is a remote and hard place to get to, but the upside is that it’s worth it once you’re there. The best way to go is to make a weekend, or more, out of it (and take the family) because there’s a lot to do there. It’s close to Yosemite, Mono Lake, hot springs and the Devils Postpile, and a whole lot more.
For the Bluesapalooza music festival, they get some great blues musicians and the setting is wonderful — literally in a wooded grove. There’s music Friday night, and all day Saturday and Sunday (plus a jam session Thursday night, too). The beer festival portion of the event, which is Saturday only, has also grown considerably since the last time I went, possibly doubling or more. There were 70 breweries pouring their beer this year. If you’re used to seeing a lot of the same Northern California breweries at festivals, Mammoth gets a lot of central and southern California breweries, which makes it a special treat, too.
The beer festival is a major fund raiser for the California Craft Brewers Association, a very worthwhile organization that I support and volunteer with. This is me at the brewer’s reception the night before the festival with CCBA executive director Tom McCormick.
L.A.’s Golden Road brewer Jon Carpenter and social diva Cambria Griffith.
It was also great seeing Travis Smith from Societe Brewing and getting a second chance to try his wonderful beers.
As the festival beer sponsor, Mammoth Brewing had two booths, one with the tap trucks. Thanks to owner Sean Turner for putting on a great festival and being a gracious host.