Friday night Anchor was kind enough to host an event to officially kick-off SF Beer Week. It was a chance for all the people who made SF Beer Week to get together — the organizers, the brewers, the bar owners, the chefs and restaurant owners, the volunteers and the media. It was also an opportunity for Anchor to share their latest creation, a spectacular new beer that they debuted for the local beer community.
Available only in magnums, and very limited — only 100 cases — that will be sold only at the brewery, for $30 per bottle.
The OBA, or “Our Barrel Ale,” a nod to their Christmas beer, “Our Special Ale,” is a blended beer using three of their beers. Though not revealed, I’m guessing their Porter, Liberty Ale and Old Foghorn.
We had a pretty good turnout to enjoy Anchor’s hospitality.
They opened four cases of OBA and poured everyone there a small sample of it.
Which took some time for everyone to get a taste.
Then Fritz Maytag talked about the beer and how it came to be. Originally he was not in favor of it, but eventually saw it was a good way to use their old whisky rye barrels. Three of their beers were aged in their own used barrels for six months and then blended into the beer they dubbed Our Barrel Ale.
Then, using Anchor’s OBA, I gave a toast to officially launch SF Beer Week and we drank to a successful week of events. Here, the organizers of SF Beer Week pose with Fritz Maytag after the toast. From left: Tom Dalldorf (Celebrator Beer News), Dave McLean (Magnolia), Bruce Paton (The Beer Chef), Fritz Maytag (Anchor), Shaun O’Sullivan (2st Amendment) and me (Brookston Beer Bulletin). Behind us, from the left, is Steve Bruce from the Toronado who was there on behalf of Dave Keene, who was unable to be there, and Dean James, also from Magnolia, who took over web duties and kept the schedule updated.
This was the toast I wrote and gave:
To San Francisco, where beer flourished with the gold
To Gold, the beautiful golden color of beer
To Beer, its art and craft whose soul we celebrate
To Celebrating, the reason we’re all together
To Togetherness, the hallmark of the Beer Community
To Community, which is who made SF Beer Week
To SF Beer Week —
Raise Your Glass To the Start of SF Beer Week 2009
And so it begins …