Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Boise Beer Fest 2010

Like last year, it's taken me a lot longer than planned/expected to get around to writing up anything on Boise Beer Fest 2010.

While I enjoyed 2009's festival, I thought there was room for improvement. As did many others--including the people who put on the fest :) They got a bigger space, spread out the lines more, and got in more food vendors, and a few other improvements that were all smaller than their effect. It was as close to perfect as you can ask for (the weather helped, too). While I wouldn't call the atmosphere last year as anything approaching businesslike, it seemed a lot more laid back this year (probably because we weren't herded together into such a tight group).

and finally, some thoughts on the brews I sampled:

  • Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale (Stone Brewing) - Basically, it's Arrogant Bastard with a little extra zing. Pretty good way to start the day.
  • Devastator (Wasatch Brewery) - Nice, still had the aftertaste of Self-Righteous going on, so I'm not sure how to describe it, but I liked it and fully intend to buy some as soon as I can.
  • Summer Ale (Crescent Brewery) - from Nampa, ID's very own new brewery, so new they don't have a website. This was fruity, sweet and totally not for me. But it was well made, could tell it was good.
  • Georgetown Porter (Georgetown Brewery) - had this last year under its old name, 9lb Porter. Still nice, a very pleasant reunion.
  • Great Divide Claymore Scotch Ale - very flavorful, I really like this. Will be back for more.
  • Great Divide Yeti - I've had a few bottles of this from Brewforia, and I'll have a few more. Tastes slightly better on tap (not news, there, I know)
  • 90 Shilling Ale (Odell Brewing) - TLomL and I both couldn't think of a better way to describe the taste than "simple." But that's not bad, it's a simple, straightforward ale. Very tasty, probably worth more than 90 shillings.
  • Crescent Brewery ESB - another entry from the local boys...very alcoholy taste, but it pulls it off. Yummy.
  • Black Cat Porter (Mac & Jack's Brewery) - a sweet porter (what?), tasty, tasty...a very non-porter-ish porter.
  • Oatis Oatmeal Stout (Ninkasi Brewing) - Nothing all that distinctive, but very nice, will keep my eye open for this one. The guy working the tap gave me a hard time for taking notes, but how was I supposed to remember how to spell Ninkasi when I made it back to my seat? Phonics would be no help here.
  • Dragonstooth Stout (Elysian Brewing) - can't describe it (my palate needs more training and/or a better vocabulary), nice stout that doesn't taste like most stouts (I realize I've described the last two similarly, but best I can do)
  • Turbodog (Abita Beer) - this is a brown? Really? Brown Ales are typically my favorite, but this one seems very atypical (whoops, there it is again). Very nice, very flavorful.

Bring on Beer Fest 2011!