Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Recap: The American Craft Beer Festival

400 craft beers...so little time.

The American Craft Beer Festival took place last weekend, and Z and I met some of our friends at the Saturday night (and final) session. Held at the Seaport World Trade Center, the festival featured 86 American brewers and (only) 400 beer samples.

This was my first time attending the Craft Beer Festival, and I must say - it's a damn good time. When we first walked up to the World Trade Center, the line to get inside was miles long - but moved swiftly (just like every other line that evening). At some festivals, you can spend more time waiting in line then sampling the products, and, thankfully, this wasn't the case here. I also liked how sippers were supplied with a pamphlet that included a check list of most of the beers offered at the festival - that way, you could keep track of what you tried, and take notes along the way.

I was also fortunate enough to have a beer aficianado by my side the entire evening, so we were able to visit some of the best vendors (in our minds) that evening in the 3.5 hour time span we had to sample.

I sampled a truck load of beers Saturday evening, so I'll just share some of my favorites with you:

Left Hand Brewing Co. (CO) Milk Stout - Chocolatey, creamy, 5.9% ABV goodness.

Oskar Blues Brewery (CO) Mamma's Little Yellow Pils - Beer in a can rocks. This brew was light, refreshing, and perfectly crisp.

Boulder Beer Co. (CO) British IPA - I love most hoppy beers, and Boulder Beer's British IPA was bubbling with hops, with a smooth finish.

Redhook Ale Brewery (N.H.) Live Free or Rye - Since I am a New Hampshire native, I also loved this little number. The beer had a flowery, almost herbal taste. It was really light and invigorating.

Troegs Brewing Co. (PA) Java Head Stout - The first time I had this beer, it was served with vanilla ice cream (beer float, anyone?) at the Troegs Beer Dinner at Cambridge Common. Although this brew will never be the same without ice cream in it, it's still one of my favorite beers. It's fairly light for a dessert beer, with a strong mocha flavor.

Many beers Saturday night also went undocumented (as did my "performance" of the evening, when I slipped in someone else's beer puddle), but let's just say the event was well worth the $40 per ticket. I can pretty much guarantee we'll be there again next year.

Did you attend the American Craft Beer Festival? If so, what were some of your favorite beers?


  1. I've never attended an ACBF mostly because I'm apprehensive about crowds and waiting in long lines at these kinds of festivals. But your recap really makes me want to check it out next year!

  2. Yes! I highly recommend going!

  3. I'm so glad you enjoyed your first ACBF.We had such a blast at the afternoon session! I am also a huge fan of Left Hand Milk Stout. Yum!

  4. We went too and I had so many wonderful beers. However, I'm not sure one can top my feelings for the Dogfish Head Festina Peche. Read about it here: http://www.dogfish.com/brews-spirits/the-brews/seasonal-brews/festina-peche.htm

    It's delightful.

  5. I love that Festina Peche! I don't know where to obtain it in the western suburbs of Boston.

    I volunteered to work two of the three sessions and had a great time. I prolly should have bought a ticket for the third session. I was only able to sample about 20 brews since we were so busy hauling water, etc.