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Beer For Beasts

Posted in Food and Drinks on March 28th, 2011

On Saturday, I attended the afternoon session of Beer for Beasts – a fundraiser for the Humane Society. It was at The Bell House in Park Slope and featured a large variety of Sixpoint beers and food from around Brooklyn.

There was a large crowd of people who were enjoying the festival, but it was not so packed that it was difficult to move around. The program provided listed the beers on tap and where they could be located. Staff members were very helpful and could answer questions and help you find what you were looking for. Although some of the beers ran out early I think it was a generally well organized and successful event.

My favorite beers were Nessie’s Revenge and Das Doppellsticke. Nessie’s Revenge is a Scottish Ale infused with distilled scotch. This was delicious and I really hope to be able to find it again. Das Doppellsticke is a wood aged double altbier. It was very rich with a nice finish.

The food was amazing and I especially enjoyed the Weisswurst & Sauerkraut on Homemade Pretzel Roll from Prime Meats and the pizza from Pizza Moto.

There was a performance by Jersey Fresh Burlesque. I’d never seen a burlesque performance before, so I was curious about what to expect. It was a lot of fun, and I had no idea anyone combined geekery and erotica outside of fan fiction.

I had a great time and I was very impressed that I got such great food and beer and entertainment for the price of my ticket – a portion of which went to charity! I will definitley be on the lookout for Sixpoint beers from now on and a trip to Pizza Moto is probably in my future as well.

2011 Philadelphia Craft Beer Festival

Posted in Food and Drinks on March 7th, 2011

I’ve been interested in micro-brews for a few years, and I like trying new ones. I think it started because a restaurant I liked to go to had a really easy guide to the different types of beers and what they tasted like. This made it very easy for me to ask questions and find something that I enjoyed. A basic knowledge of wine eventually followed (this book helped) but at the time I felt intimidated asking a server or bartender about the different varietals of wine.

On Saturday I went with a group of friends to the Philadelphia Craft Beer Festival. I had only been to one before, The New York Brewfest this past summer. I do love New York, but the Philadelphia festival was much more enjoyable. The event was crowded but not oversold. It was indoors, but I felt safe – the New York event was on Governor’s Island there were times between waiting on endless lines that I felt as if I would be trampled – especially waiting to get in or for a ferry to leave.

There were many beers to sample, including some of my favorites like Franziskaner, Ithaca and Blue Point. One of the things I like about these events is that you can discover a beer that you enjoy that’s brewed close to home. It’s a good way to support local businesses and reduce your number of food miles.

I tried a few that I have never had before and these were the ones that stood out:

Innis & Gunn

Innis & Gunn makes beers that are aged in oak barrels that previously contained navy rum. The taste is rich and delicious. It’s not something you would drink at the beach but I am going to be asking my local beer distributor if he has any very soon.

High Point Brewing Company

I’m a fan of wheat beers, no matter their country of origin, and was interested to try the Ramstein Hefeweizen. It was very smooth with the almost hint of butter that a lot of premium wheat beers have a satisfyingly medium bodied finish. It compares favorably with Franziskaner and I like it better than Stella or Blue Moon. Their brewery in New Jersey is open for tours once a month, so I think that might be my next beer related excursion.

Stone Brewing Company

This one was a surprise. I thought I was on line to try the Stone Smoked Porter. But what I got was a pour of the infamous Arrogant Bastard IPA. I don’t really like IPA’s in general but this one was excellent and I am happy that I tried it. I did eventually get to the Smoked Porter which I enjoyed as I expected to.

The one complaint I had about this event was that a map of the tables would have been extremely helpful, but was not given to the attendees. My friends and I were there the entire time and could not find Allagash or Original Sin. Ithaca and Troegs were almost impossible to find. I know that the point of these events isn’t to go and only drink beers you already know that you like, but if you really have a hankering for something that’s difficult to buy when you feel like it, it’s disappointing to know that the beer you want is somewhere very close to you but just out of your grasp.

I would recommend the Philadelphia Craft Beer Festival as a great activity for people who like beer or who are interested in learning more about what kinds they enjoy. Don’t forget your pretzel necklace!