Saturday, July 4, 2009

Seattle International Beerfest

I spent Friday afternoon and evening at the Seattle International Beerfest at the Seattle Center. There were 153 beers available, plus quite good music, and unbelievable weather for the first week of July in Seattle. I spoke to a few volunteers who seemed to be having a fine time. I might think about volunteering next year.

I tried:
  • Weinhenstephaner Hefe-Weissbier.
  • Reissdorf Kolsch.
  • Great Divide Double Wit.
  • Cascade Gold Yeller Belgian Ale. This sour ale aged in French oak wine barrels was my favorite. Totally loved it. Too bad there's no way to get it without going to the Raccoon Lodge brewpub in Beaverton. It looks like it may be a one-time creation, too. I will definitely undertake an exploration of sour ales.
  • Henney's Vintage Cider. Excellent. Really smooth, low carbonation, slightly bitter finish.
  • Ace Joker Strong Cider. Not bad. Dry and incredibly pale. I wonder how they get that color.
  • JW Lees Lagavulin. This was 6 tickets. It's an English barleywine aged in Lagavulin whisky casks. Very rich, sweet, smooth, and with a subtle Scotch flavor. I liked it but would not pay what I think the 9 ounce bottles cost.
  • Dupont Avril Table Bier. I probably should have done some palate scrubbing after the barleywine before trying this saison. Not much to it.
  • Alagash FOUR.
  • Urthel Hop-It. This is supposed to be a hoppy strong Belgian pale, but I didn't find it to be all that hoppy. I wouldn't have guessed the claimed 80 IBUs, perhaps because of the overall balance.
  • Old Lompoc LSD.
  • Cascade Jellyroll. This chick beer seemed to be very popular so I tried it. It's a raspberry wheat, deliciously pink, super clean, and probably the best fruit beer I've had.
Plus the biergarten had Peroni and Pilsner Urquell on tap, so I had a few of those. I'm not wild about either, but it was nice to have full pints while listening to the bands. And I rather enjoy rolling the many Rs in Perrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrroni.

There were many others I'd have liked to try but it was getting late, I ran out of cash, and I'd had plenty of beer for one day. I could easily spend all three days tasting.

I ran into Zach, a guy I met at my first North Seattle Homebrew club meeting (his first, too), and hung out with him and his wife, Jackie, for a while. He brought a Flanders Red sour beer to the club meeting, the first I'd ever had, and I loved it. I meant to try the Duchesse de Bourgogne Flanders Red for comparison but didn't get to it.

Of the four bands I saw, I really enjoyed Curtains For You, and Knut Bell & the Blue Collars.

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