Showing posts with label Massachusetts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Massachusetts. Show all posts

July 31, 2013

Top 5 Experiences from the 2013 Beer Bloggers Conference

The 2013 Beer Bloggers Conference
was held at the Boston Park Plaza
Hotel, July 26-28.
I returned home on Monday from the Beer Bloggers Conference and wow -- what a marathon. I first flew to Boston and immediately bussed up north to spent a couple days with my little brother in Bar Harbor, ME. I then linked up with the pre-conference excursion in Portland, ME, before heading back to Boston for the conference itself.

Zephyr Adventures did a fantastic job organizing the whole thing. If you're a blogger who writes about beer, wine, food, or fitness and wellness, I highly recommend you checking out their annual conferences as an opportunity to network with others and elevate your blogging and social media skills.

Rather than give a full play by play, here are my top five experiences from the weekend (in chronological order):

July 24, 2013

Off to the Beer Bloggers Conference!

I'm en route (via Maine) to the 2013 Beer Bloggers Conference in Boston, MA. It should be a super beer geeky good time!

In addition to getting back to visit a world class craft beer city, I'm looking forward to...

Things kick off Thursday afternoon in Portland, ME. I will report here, on Facebook, and Twitter as time allows and do my best to avoid a wretched four-day hangover.

Will you be at #BBC13? Hit me up!

October 25, 2012

GABF Recap: Part 2

The remainder of the Great American Beer Festival and the long weekend in Denver was a blast. A little hazy, a little rough on the body, but packed with good food, good times, and great beer. (Read Part 1 here.)

Friday

The Kitchen's Portobello Sandwich with a
Denver Beer Co. Summer Ale.
After some much needed sleep and lots of water, Friday began with another trek up the Cherry Creek Trail towards downtown. I stopped in for lunch at the Kitchen, located on the corner of 16th and Wazee St. in LoDo.

Anticipating that some veggies might help soak up the beer ahead, I opted for the Portobello Sandwich. Locally-baked ciabatta with sautéed red onions, gouda cheese, house-made hummus, and greens -- the sandwich was fantastic! The mushrooms, onions, and greens were all regionally sourced and organic. The sandwich was accompanied by house fries (from organic Idaho potatoes) and homemade ketchup. (Homemade ketchup? Gotta try that!) Some Denver Beer Company Summer Ale washed it down. Awesome.

Heading to the festival a little early, I walked around the convention center for a bit sans crowd and snapped some photos.

September 6, 2012

4 September Beer Festivals to Enjoy this Fall

Fall is a great time for beer festivals. (Then again, when is it not a great time for beer festivals?)

The original 1811 Oktoberfest in Munich celebrated the marriage of Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese of Bavaria, but it also coincided with the harvest of the grain crop. What better way to ring in a new season of brewing by finishing off the previous spring's batch? While Munich's Oktoberfest has strict standards for the beers that can be served, these festivals below allow the modern beer-lover a wide variety styles to explore:

August 21, 2012

How to Make Your Own Ginger Beer

Ginger Libation, a Panama hat, and an iron
bottle opener from BMW Ironworks.
At my family reunion this past June, my cousin Ben, a blacksmith, showed up with a couple bottles of Green River Ambrosia's Ginger Libation. It rocked my palate and sparked my curiosity. At a potent 8.5% ABV, the Libation will kick your ass if you're not careful.

I was intrigued by the list of ingredients: pineapple juice, lemon juice, lime juice, ginger, cane sugar. Hey, these are all easy to find in Panama. Why not give it a shot?

May 7, 2012

Get your vote on: BeerCity USA 2012

The taps at organic Pisgah Brewing, a stone's throw
from Asheville, NC.
In case you haven't already done so, go ahead and get your vote in for the BeerCity USA 2012 poll.  Any beer fan can vote, with a limit of one vote per computer.

Asheville, NC, is the reigning champion and, at the time of writing, has a narrow lead over Grand Rapids, MI.

The fact that this past week's Craft Brewer's Conference and World Beer Cup were held in San Diego, CA, should be considered, though one might also want to check out Food Republic's Craft Beer Power Rankings, which include representation from ten breweries in six different states.

I just made it harder to choose, didn't I?

March 18, 2012

American Craft Beer Fest: June 1 & 2

WHO: BeerAdvocate & Harpoon Brewery present...
WHAT: The 5th Annual American Craft Beer Fest, the east coast's largest celebration of American beer, featuring over 100 American brewers and over 500 beers!
WHEN: June 1 & 2, 2012 - 3 sessions:

  • Session A | June 1, 2012; 6-9:30pm
  • Session B | June 2, 2012; 1-4:30pm
  • Session C | June 2, 2012; 6-9:30pm

WHERE: Seaport World Trade Center, 200 Seaport Blvd, Boston, MA
WHY: Because beer is awesome!
HOW: Tickets

In-between sessions at the 2011 ACBF.
Had a great time at last year's event.  Consider volunteering to save a little $$ and meet some industry folks (you might even get a little free beer out of it!).

June 12, 2011

Cambridge, MA: Cambridge Brewing Company's Collaborative Groove #1

Inside the CBC tasting room.
As a thank you gift to volunteers, the American Craft Beer Festival organizers treated us to a 'Beer-unch' at Cambridge Brewing Company, located just outside of Boston near the campus of MIT.  CBC joined forces with another brewery and an urban winery from San Francisco to create their 'Collaborative Groove #1.'  The teamwork paid off and produced something unlike I'd ever had before.

This was a pale ale made with Citra hops and gruit, a term for a mixture of herbs that was used for flavoring beer before the common use of hops.  It had a peachy aroma, cloudy orange color, not much head, and a slight piney taste of hops.  There was also something very familiar about this beer, but it took several sips to realize that it tasted like sangria.  Sure enough, this beer was aged in wine barrels to give it a very unique flavor.

A couple of CBC's specialty brews, La Saisonniere
and the Charles River Porter.
More and more, craft breweries are expanding the definition of beer.  While the Germans have a law requiring them to stick exclusively to water, grains, hops, and yeast, it has become common in the States to see beers made with just about everything under the sun (Dogfish Head is a pioneer in this respect).  Aging beer in wine or liquor barrels is also becoming popular.  Of course it's a hotly debated topic among brewers, but as far as I'm concerned, if you can do it as well as Cambridge Brewing Company does, I'm all for it.

June 10, 2011

The American Craft Beer Festival

This Saturday I had the pleasure of volunteering at the American Craft Beer Festival in Boston, Massachusetts. With over 100 breweries serving over 500 different beers, this was a beer-lover's smorgasbord. I volunteered at two sessions and in return received a free ticket to the event - food included.  Most of the breweries were from the New England area, but they had a few from as far away as North Carolina, Colorado, California, and even the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Just one row of brewers from the American
Craft Beer Festival
I was able to sample 25 different beers, from milk stouts to hefeweizens, chocolate porters to barleywines. Here I was thinking I had a more or less complete understanding of beer styles, but I came across several new concoctions, some new to me, some just plain out of control. A Berliner Weiss, I discovered, is a wheat beer, but unlike a hefeweizen, this one is tart with strong hints of lemon. I sampled a bacon beer, which unfortunately was not as good as it sounded. One of my favorites was the Mango Pale Ale from St. Johns Brewery in the Virgin Islands. The beer that blew me away the most: the North Carolina-based Duck Rabbit Brewery's End of Reason, a strong Baltic Porter that tasted very much like chocolate and raspberries.

All in all it was a very educational experience. I got to speak with several brewers and sales reps. What's more, was just the general impression I got of how big this craft beer movement has grown. The American Craft Beer Festival had three sessions with around 5,000 attendees each, at $45 a ticket, you do the math...

Thanks to BeerAdvocate.com and Harpoon Brewery for putting on a great fest!