Sunday, May 30, 2010
Monday, May 24, 2010
- Open Intoxicants--This is a big part of this event and appears to be encouraged.
- Public Drunkenness--Also seems to be a prerequisite for participation.
- Public Nudity--There were police and fire fighters there, and it wasn't like the naked guys were being discreet. Unless your definition of discreet is walking downtown with your junk bouncing around and your face painted blue.
I did not take too many pictures of this event for one major reason: I did not want to look too much like a tourist. This is clearly a big deal for the locals, and I didn't want to look like some square that has never seen anything like this before. Of course I had never seen anything like this before, but that is beside the point. Bob & I immediately started discussing future participation in the Bay To Breakers "run" next year. Clothed.
So that is how Sunday started. Then we picked up our friend from Atlanta and her boyfriend (also from Atlanta) and headed north. We got to the pub at Russian River Brewing Co. at noon and had some great subs and pizza. I had a Perdition (a "Biere de Sonoma"--great biere de garde style) and Blind Pig IPA. After that we drove south to Petaluma, dropped our gear at the hotel and got a cab to Lagunitas.
The circus was really cool and laid back. There were lots of other breweries there pouring beer, trapeze artists, burlesque show, live bands, and all kinds of crazy stuff. The party got fired up a little later once everybody had a chance to get warmed up. Unlike the crazies in San Fran, this was a Sunday afternoon in Sonoma County. Very chilled out. But once this band called Gooferman started playing, the party really got going. These guys were very funky, with some rock and punk elements. Think old Red Hot Chili Peppers with a saxophone. Except that they were in full clown make-up, and most of the songs were R-Rated in a sexual way. They also had these super-sexy dancers in wild torn-up clothes and crazy make-up and wigs. The band actually finished the show walking through the crowd and out the gates of where the party was held. It was awesome. I would go see these guys again in a heartbeat, and how they came up with the concept for their band is beyond me. This was not a special get-up for the circus party. They perform like that every time they play.
Anyway, so that was over around 7 o'clock and then it was time to get some dinner and wind down. I have been to plenty of Lagunitas parties, and let me tell you something: When they are over, you don't need a whole lot of after-party partying. Plus I had a rental car to return and a flight back home in the morning. We were also facing Monday morning rush-hour traffic coming over the Golden Gate Bridge, all the way through the city to the airport. Turns out that wasn't so bad, but we didn't know that the night before. I was thinking that it would be like 400 south from Cumming to Hartsfield-Jackson on a Monday morning. Forget about that. We got from Petaluma to the airport in an hour and a half, and we dropped our friends off in the city along the way.
That's all for now folks. Enjoy the pictures and have a great week. Don't forget that if you want to get into the Beer Connoisseur Festival on June 12th for free, you can. All you need to do is volunteer to work a few hours pouring beer, and your admission will be exactly $0.00. Go to http://www.beerconnoisseurfestival.com/ to volunteer. Bye.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
I will be working on my slide show this week from my weekend in San Fran & at the Lagunitas Beer Circus. I can't begin to tell you how unfair it would be to you, my readers, to try to explain some of these things in words. Let's just say that the Bay Area did not fail to disappoint in its weirdness. You have got to hand it to Californians when it comes to letting it all hang out. And I mean all of it.
- I had my days switched around regarding the Widmer Prickly Pear Braggot at Prado. That is tomorrow (Wednesday), not today!
- The Newcastle Summer release is also tomorrow at The Fred. As promised, there is a picture of the glassware. Told you it was cool. Come in and get one if you buy a pint, but hurry. There are less than 100 of these to give away. Lots of beer people will be on hand too. Should be fun.
- Wednesday also has Perimeter pouring '08 Sierra Bigfoot, '09 Weyerbacher Old Heathen, Smuttynose Imperial Stout, Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale and the rare sour beer, Smuttynose Rouge d'Shire. Scratch the previously mentioned '08 Terrapin Big Hoppy Monster. We already drank that keg. Woops.
- Thursday is the meet & greet with Left Hand owner Eric Wallace. Drink a cask-conditioned firkin of Sawtooth or try the new Nitro-Sawtooth. There will also be some '06 & '08 Chainsaw, plus some '08 Smoke Jumper Porter available in bottles. This is at The Fred as well.
- Friday we have some hard to find beers at Lindbergh. Nogne-O Imperial Stout and Porter from Norway, Ridgeway IPA from England and the new Ctrl-Alt-Del from Ft. Collins Brewing Co. will all be available on draft.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
I am going to the circus this Sunday. No, not the one with trapeze artists and elephants standing on stuff. I am going to the beer circus at Lagunitas. It is looking like fall travel plans may be muddled up with some new store openings and the like, so I am heading out to California for a little "work" in the spring. The beer circus was first held last year, and by all accounts, it was a blast. So I am meeting some friends out there for a weekend getaway. I will be in San Francisco on Saturday, Petaluma on Sunday (after having lunch at Russian River in Santa Rosa), and back to GA on Monday. I know, it's a short trip, but I have work to do. I mean, these people don't pay me to travel around and drink beer. OK, they do pay me to travel around and drink beer, but that is not all they pay me to do. The circus line-up looks pretty crazy (click image to enlarge), and Lagunitas definitely has a taste for the bizarre. I mean, what is Gabby Lala and when does the taco truck show up? I want answers to both of those things before the Bed of Nails guy gets started. Be prepared for pictures of all of these things, including the new and beautiful Beer Sanctuary at Lagunitas once I return. I am taking a full-sized suitcase for a two-day trip. How much beer can fit in a checked bag? I guess we will find out on Sunday, won't we?
- Monday at Metropolis we will have head brewer Nick Nock (yes, that is his real name) from SweetWater to mingle with our guests while you drink '08 & '09 Festive Ale. Plus we have the now virtually extinct BSP Quad. In addition to that, there will be a special top-secret beer appearance that I guarantee 99.9% of you have never seen in a bottle. This is year-old strong ale that has not been seen since its release. We will be selling pint glass pours from 1 liter bottles until it is gone. Are you a Brewniversity member? Do you crave rare credits? Do you like to show off in front of others, "I bet you've never seen THIS before!"? Then this event is for you. Even the '08 Festive will be poured from 1 liter bottles, so it will be a distinct credit from the '08 drafts we drank last year.
- Tuesday at Prado there will be a keg of Widmer Prickly Pear Braggot. What in the hell is that? Well, I guess you need to come by and find out. (A braggot is sort of a mix between a mead and an al.e)
- Wednesday you will want to head over to Perimeter. They will be tapping a 2008 Terrapin Big Hoppy Monster and a 2008 Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barley Wine. There are all kinds of cellared goodies in coolers all over Taco Mac-land. They will also have some Smuttynose Imperial Stout, Farmhouse Ale and the new and very rare Rouge d'Shire. Let me help you out with that: Rouge, like the make-up, not Rogue, like the brewery; d' pronounced "duh" and Shire like where the hobbits live. Rouge d'Shire. It is a Flemish-style sour beer, so don't expect a wimpy summer light beer.
- Also on Wednesday at The Fred we will be releasing Newcastle Summer Ale. Stop by to taste this year's batch and get a cool 16oz. schooner glass to take home. I will show you a picture of the glass next week if I don't forget. They are pretty sweet. You will want one.
- Thursday at The Fred we will have Left Hand owner Eric Wallace to chat with you while drinking a plethora of Sawtooth incarnations. Sawtooth is Eric's first and most beloved beer. We will have a cask of Sawtooth to tap plus the new Nitro Sawtooth. There will also be '06 and '08 bottles of Chainsaw, which is a double Sawtooth. We will be selling 11oz. pours from the big bottles of Chainsaw so that everyone can try both without going broke/getting totally hammered. Expect some other Left Hand beers to be....um...on hand.
- On Friday we will be pouring some Nogne-O drafts at Lindbergh. Let's pronounce this one now: Say "none-ya" like "This here ain't none ya business." These beers are from Norway, and they all rate 98 to 100 on www.ratebeer.com. Not easy to do. There should also be a keg of Ft. Collins Ctrl-Alt-Delete (an alt bier, duh). This thing is still coming into focus, but if you are looking for some rare beers next Friday, Lindbergh is your place.