|Almost in the building|
The first stop on Saturday was A2, the very first booth of the festival, 21st-Amendment Brewery. I had myself a Brew Free or Die IPA and a Back in Black. Both were hoppy and wonderful.
Next, we stopped by Bear Republic to sample Racer 5 IPA, Racer X, and Black Racer. Also all hoppy and wonderful.
We found ourselves at A34 Uncommon Brewers where I let the volunteer talk me into trying a Bacon Brown Ale. Generally speaking, I am not a fan of Bacon beers, but this one was actually very good. The bacon was subtle enough that it did not over-power the taste. It also had nice head retention. I sort of wish the brewer had been there so I could have asked him how he went about brewing this beer.
While in the Pacific Northwest, we hit quite a few booths: 10 Barrel Brewing Company, Barhop Brewing, Boneyard Beer Co, Breakside Brewery, BridgePort Brewing Company (BridgePort Stumptown Tart was tasty). All the beers we had along here were very good.
Next, we headed over to Seabright Brewery F33. You may recall that yesterday I had meant to write this booth down for their Golden Sour. I was not disappointed today. It was indeed another tasty sour beer.
Since we were right there, we also tried some Shmaltz Brewing Company beers. Shmaltz is of course the company that brews kosher He'Brew beers. Not only are they certified kosher, but they are really delicious, well made, interesting beers. Plus, their names are very clever and amusing.
We stopped by quite a few more breweries in this section as well, and was not disappointed in any of the beers.
Remember, Friday Drake's Brewing Company (San Leandro, CA) was out of their Barrel House Sour. We visited them again. They had restocked. I really liked this sour. It had a nice woody - aged flavor underneath the tart sourness. Very nicely done.
Then, we headed up to the Mid-Atlantic region to search for one of my Mr. Beer virtual friends, Steve (the Beer Label Man). We had been texting back and forth to meet in person. He was working the L15, Mad Fox Brewing Company. He actually lives in New York and made the trip to Denver to volunteer for the GABF. Brilliant! It was great to meet Steve in person. Nice to know he actually exists in real life. We talked. He got to meet "Mrs. Sheppy". He poured us some beer. He also suggested I check out Captain Lawrence Brewing. I am glad he did. More on that later.
|Steve, AKA "Beer Label Man" (photo by Manfish Brewing)|
We got to try all the Sam Adam's Long Shot winners. I forgot to mention in yesterday's post that we had tried the employee beers on Friday night. Those were very good. I thought that employee that actually won was the worst of the three, but even though it was not the best of the three, I thought it was worthy of the win. The two home-brewer beer winners were great.
|Rosso e Marrone might be the be sour I had|
We tried more beers. We talked to more brewers. We ate off our pretzel necklaces. We wandered around having a good time.
|Not the most popular booth, but some people came by|
|Another great pretzel necklace|
At some point, I sent a text to another one of my Mr. Beer virtual friends, Ken (of Manfish Brewing). He got to this session late, but we decided to meet at the front by 21 A. Ken is from out of town and really seems to have been having a great time at all the sessions. If you are his facebook friend, check out his facebook album for the Great American Beer Fest. We had a great time talking for a few minutes before we went our separate ways. We even got pictures taken together.
|Ken of Manfish Brewing|
After we separated from Ken, we did more of the same.... we did more samples.
One thing that I totally intended to do and forgot about was to try to meet up with Dave of Fermentedly Challenged. I am kicking myself this morning about that. If I had not forgotten my list in the mini-van I would have remembered, but that is not really all that great of an excuse. I am really sorry, Dave.
He had also suggested Trinity Brewing Company's Brain of the Turtle, which was also on my list and which I also forgot. Damn. I missed out on a great sour beer because I forgot my list. Stupid Sheppy.
|Little Sumpin' Sumpin'|
|Beautiful Downtown Denver|
|Dale's Pale Ale Truck|
So, that is GABF for us. We survived. We had fun. Good times.