Sunday, June 1, 2008

City Pages Hail & Rain & Drunk Fest

Well, Mother Nature did it to us again this year. About an hour into the City Pages Beer Fest it started raining big, fat, cold drops of rain...and then the marble sized hail came...lots of it. I happened to be outside the tasting area at the time so I was able to find shelter and Kris had her poncho with, so she stayed dry, but she ended up with welts on her arms from the hail. Luckily the rain and hail didn't last long, so the festing could continue. At least until the second band of storms came through. And for anyone wondering, there weren't really any wet, see-through t-shirts present. hrmmm

Kris was pleased with the event, overall. I was less so. The beer selection was as we expected; lots of crap which was made up for by great beers from some of the craft beer joints. One annoying thing about the fest is that most of the beer is served by volunteers who 1) don't know squat about beer (most of them), 2) were often pretty rude (some of them), 3) weren't even filling the tasting cups to the damn 2 oz. line (about half of them). And the crowd was mainly rude drunks who also didn't know crap about beer. I happened to be standing at the Flat Earth tent towards the end of the evening when some d-bag came pushing through the crowd, stuffed his arm over my shoulder, and shouted for Jeff to "Give (him) some of that dark shit. That dark shit is good." Of course, he was referring to Black Helicopter. *sigh* Too much of that. By the way, Flat Earth's dark shit is good if you haven't had it. Real good. Jeff used coffee from Paradise Roasters, a premier, local roaster in the beer.

  • Flat Earth, Surly, Summit and Schell's were anchors of the event, in my opinion. The crowd didn't appreciate their "dark shit," so you could generally get a beer at their tents without too much trouble, unlike the Land Shark and Schlitz tents. And these breweries had representatives present and serving beer. There were enough other craft beers represented (e.g. Boulder Brewing, Boulevard, Bell's, etc.) to provide a good selection.

  • Herkimer was there and I was able to chat with their new brewer for about 5 minutes. I enjoyed what I had of Herkimer's and liked what I heard from their new brewer.

  • There actually were a few new beer offerings to be had. Peak Organic Brewing out of Portland, Maine had beers there, including a pale, nut brown, amber and maple oat. Decent. Atlantic Brewing Co. also had beers there including a blueberry ale, ginger, nut brown and a porter. They may have been there in the past. I don't remember.

  • We bumped into a number of friends and it was fun hanging out.

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