Friday, February 5, 2010

Upcoming Event- Taming of the Brew

On Wednesday, February 3, I left work early. Why? To make sure I was able to secure tickets to a local beer festival in my hometown of Bloomsburg, PA. The event is a highlight for me every year, as it allows my friends and I to have a great beer night and not worry about things like getting home, getting lost or running out of cash. (I had friends try to get tickets and they were sold out 10 minutes after opening.)

The Taming of the Brew is a fundraiser for our local theatre group. They rent out two large rooms and limit the ticket sales. This combination makes sure that you have a great time, without being crowded (the number one think I hate at a lot of festivals). There is rarely a wait over 2 minutes waiting for the beer, and the people pouring are always social and helpful. From their website:

The evening will be filled with fun. Taste and learn about new beer
styles. Sample wonderful foods from an array of area restaurants and
caterers. Try tasting beer and food together to find complementary flavor
pairings. Vote for your favorite beer at the auction table (Who
knows? It could win the People's Choice Award!) Bid on a wide array
of items generously contributed by local businesses and craftspeople at our
silent auction.

The festival takes place in two large rooms. Around the outside of the rooms are booths, that go in order of food, beer, food, beer, making it so you are always close to each. At the back of the one room is normally a jazz band playing music.

The fest draws many smaller breweries/brewpubs from around the state (i.e. Berwick Brewing, Bullfrog Brewery, Old Forge Brewing, Sly Fox), as well as some of the larger breweries (i.e. Ommegang, DogfishHead, Magic Hat, Troegs)- there are also a couple of distributers that bring a selection (one brings Stone).

One great thing about the festival (many festivals) is the ability of the breweries to bring something different, or release a special beer. (At the Michigan Brewer's Guild Festival this past July, I was able to try 10+ beers that will probably never be made, like the Jolly Pumpkin Weizen Bam with Hibiscus- check out here and here.) At last year's TotB, Sly Fox released their (I believe) Odyssey Imperial IPA, and I was able to try Ommegang's Cave-Aged Three Philosophers and Cave-Aged Abbey Ale.

Overall, I like to try the smaller brewpubs that I am not able to get to very often, and then go to the regulars to see what they brought. I look forward to this event, and hopefully am able to report back with any new finds.

Chief Wiggum enjoyed some Ommegang Three Philosophers

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