Posts Tagged ‘ allagash ’

Savannah Craft Brew Fest – Part 1 of 3 – The Arrival

River StreetMy girlfriend always told me that Savannah Georgia was the best place she’s ever called home. Her words painted it as an old southern style, river hugged city lavished in beauty and history.

Always describing Savannah-ites as overly friendly and unaware of the hustle and bustle of a northeastern lifestyle we are accustomed to, she warned me that unless I want to engage in a 20 minute conversation, I should stick to “Hello” as my greeting instead of my typical go-to “How’re you?”.

And right she was — but man, did I welcome it. The people in the south are incredibly welcoming and instantly willing to engage you in a conversation. From shop keepers to random folk on a walk, I think I almost grew tired of talking (a hard concept for me to fathom).

Savannah River and TP BridgeSavannah, Georgia is a 75 square mile town nestled under the armpit of the Savannah River. It would take an entire book to describe the town with a recorded history stemming back to the 1700’s. If you’re really interested in what the town has to offer, check out savannahvisit.com and follow @VisitSavannah for a ton of information.

Our trip to Savannah was two fold: 1) surprise my girlfriend with a trip to a city where she spent a number of years studying at SCAD and 2) the annual Savannah Craft Brew Festival happening during Labor Day weekend!

I gathered all of my information from Amy, the brains behind @SAVCraftBrew. She was so welcoming and informative that I felt as if I was going to visit an old friend.

Prior to the event, I even scored a limited edition Craft Brew Festival t-shirt from 2010 through a Twitter retweet contest. What a start to the trip – all before we even took off!

The organizers had various events planned for the festival including:

  • A craft beer dinner on Friday the 2nd
  • An American craft beer tasting on Saturday the 3rd
  • An International craft beer tasting on Sunday the 4th

Moon River Brewery TapsWe arrived in Savannah in the middle of the day on Friday and quickly began the town and craft beer exploration. After we downed an enormous plate of fresh seafood and grabbed two Fat Tires to go, we traveled the streets to our first craft beer stop: Moon River Brewery!

Moon River Brewery is a well known local brewpub located on West Bay Street and is run by brewmaster John Pinkerton. The pub brews all of their beers on the premises and features a weekly casked augmented version of one of their flagships.

Knowing that we wanted to try all the beers that Moon River had to offer, we ordered a flight and utilized our crazy yet logical scoring system to decide the winner!

Crazy Scoring System at Moon RiverBeing the hophead that I am, my favorites were the Swamp Fox IPA and Rosemary IPA brewed with rosemary spice. In addition to their own brews, Moon River also featured local beers from Terrapin and Red Brick. I had a pint of the Red Brick Brown Ale which to this day is my favorite Brown Ale.

Because we were not in the mood for the showcased beer dinner event at night, we ultimately landed at The Distillery on West Liberty Street. This place is a craft heads dream! I highly recommend it if you’re ever in town.

The Distillery Craft Beer MenuThe walls are filled with signs and logos of the beers that likely fill many of our refrigerators. That night, the bar was holding their 2nd Annual “Night of the Beer eek” which featured the infamous Dogfish Head Randall.

Unfortunately for the patrons, the DFH representative never quite got it to work and the Randall had to be quickly decommissioned. We did get a very small sample of the DFH Theobrama infused with chilli chips – awesome concept and unique taste, although not overwhelming or extremely memorable.

Founder Kentucky Breakfast StoutOh, and Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout was being tapped 30 minutes after our arrival. Patiently waiting until the 6pm tap time, I nursed a forgettable IPA.

Upon entering the bar, I requested a KBS and was pleasantly surprised when the bartender brought it over immediately when it was tapped.

What an epic beer. I can’t do it justice with words – this is one you need to go out and find.  I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Savannah CatacombsOn our way back to the hotel, we stopped by a fireworks show and got to see some of Savannah’s ancient back streets. All in all, it was a pleasant opening day to a phenomenal weekend!

Tune in tomorrow for Part 2: The American Craft Beer Grand Tasting!

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NYC on the Craft Beer Map – Z’s Suggestions for @nycbeerweek!

NY Craft Beer Week LogoSince I had my last birthday party at the Brooklyn Brewery, my friends frequently ask about different beer events and happenings around the NJ and NYC area.

To those friends and many more: the NY Craft Beer Week kicks off tomorrow!

I’m a bit surprised it took me this long to blog about it, but quite honestly, there has been a lot going on this week. My sincerest apologies – the good news is that the 10-day extravaganza will not end until next Sunday, September 25th giving you plenty of time to imbibe new craft beers from across the country.

The organizers of the events (@nycbeerweek) have put together a “beer passport” which provides you with a $3 pint glass of the craft beer (typically $6 – $7) at select bars participating in the Beer Week. Check out NY Craft Beer Week Passport information here.

“But there are so many options! What should I do? Which event should I attend?!” you might be asking yourself.

Don’t fret – an overwhelming amount of events is typically the norm during festivals, beer weeks, and special events. Rest assured that there are no wrong choices.

You will find everything from tap takeovers, dinner pairings, seminar type events, and even super secret stashes of very rare brews to sample (you’ll have to get a little lucky, right place at the right time kind of thing, to experience these).

I traversed the week long event calendar and picked out a few of my favorites. I will do my best to attend these events, but as with most things beer related, game time decisions are standard! Also traveling Monday through Thursday might make it a bit more difficult.

Z Marks the Spot(s) – Suggestions for NY Craft Beer Week

Friday, September 16th
Mudville – 126 Chambers St, @Mudville9NYC
Left Hand Brewery
From the Rockies to your pint glass – try the Fade to Black Stout from this Colorado based brewery.

Saturday, September 17th (concert)
The Gibson – 11th St and Bedford, Brooklyn, thegibsonnyc.com
Uinta Brewery
Look for the Cockeyed Cooper Barleywine from this Salt Lake City brewery – amazing!

Sunday, September 18th (brunch)
Taproom 307 – 307 3rd Ave, @Taproom307
Empire Brewery
A northeast brewery out of Syracuse, NY – pride of New York! Ever had a Fruit Beer? No, go for the Deep Purple. Stop by and say Hi to Hayley – this girl knows her beer!

Monday, September 19th
The Stag’s Head – 252 E 51st, at 2nd Ave, @TheStagsHead
Allagash Brewery
You’ve probably had their “White” flagship witbier – but the brewery has so much more to offer! Just ask @kellywtoutsound! Be on the look out for Victor, Victoria and Interlude.

Tuesday, September 20th
Amity Hall – 80 W 3rd St, at Thompson St, @TheHalfPintNYC
Brewery Ommegang
Two great things about Cooperstown New York – Baseball Hall of Fame and this brewery! Hennepin is found frequently around the city, so look for Rare Vos and Three Philosophers.

Wednesday, September 21st (dinner)
Colicchio & Sons – 85 10th Ave, between W 15th and 16th St, @Colicchio_Sons
Six Point Brewery
Another great brewery from Brooklyn – be on the look out for Sweet Action and their recently brewed Autumation, in “nanokegs” now!

Thursday, September 22nd
Banter – 132 Havemeyer St at South 1st Street, Brooklyn, banterbrooklyn.com
Founders Brewery
Immediately upon arrival proceed directly to the bar and ask for KBS… enough said, trust me.

Thursday, September 22nd (cause’ two choices means twice the fun!)
Rattle N’ Hum Craft Bar – 33rd St, between 5th and Madison, @RattleNHumBar
Stone Brewing Company
The standard in craft beer – oh, and CEO / crazy dude Greg Koch will be there – honestly, it’s worth coming out just to see him, I’ve heard great things about Greg.

Friday, September 23rd
Rye House – 11 W 17th St, between 5th and 6th, @ryehousenyc
Rye Beer Night
This one is a shout-out to my buddy Os (@NJBeerNerd) who keeps rye ale always stocked!

Saturday, September 24th
Guilty Goose – 131 W 23rd St, between 6th and 7th, @guiltygoose
Goose Island
You might have seen the Chicago originated “Goose Island IPA” around – now try the rest of their delicious crafts. Be on the look out for Matilda!

Sunday, September 25th
Rattle N’ Rum Craft Bar – 33rd St, between 5th and Madison, @RattleNHumBar
Rare Ass Beer Brunch N Bruzzer
I think this one speaks for itself!

NY Craft Beer Week Logo 2Check out the NY Craft Beer Week website for a full list of the events!

In keeping with the spirit of the craft beer community, a number of breweries have brewed special concoctions for this eventful week.

I recently received a tweet from Southern Tier (@stbcbeer) brewery which noted that their 5 Boroughs Belgian Pale Ale has been specifically brewed for the NY Craft Beer Week (location and availability TBD!).

Makers of Pumking (see my previous post); this New York brewery makes fantastically enjoyable craft beer.  Seek out this gem of an ale out and let me know what you think!

What are your plans for NY Craft Beer Week and what events are you excited to attend?