Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Great American Beer Festival - Denver, September 2009

My first beer festival! Totally started my beer existence with a bang. Huge conference center, more beer than I could ever handle. To give us a sense of order, the night before the event we went through the list of breweries and marked the ones we were especially excited to visit. I say "we" to make it sound like I had any sort of opinion on this. In reality, I knew nothing about which breweries developed which beers (all I knew at that point was "dark beer = good!"), so the Lumberjack got to lead the way.

(I, however, am the virgo in this duo, so I happily marked up the map in the GABF brochure. I created a very thoughtful and linear excursion through the whole event so that we could hit up all the places we wanted, and skip, say, the Budweiser tent. ew.)

Prior to GABF, my favourite beer was Mikkeller's Beer Geek Breakfast (Stout, 7.5% ABV), with Mikkeller's Santa's Little Helper 2008 (Belgian Strong Dark Ale, 11.00% ABV) a close second. However, at GABF I met my new boyfriend (sorry, Lumberjack), named Great Divide's Yeti (Imperial Stout, 9.5% ABV). Holy CRAP (I believe those were my exact words). I drank it, gave the Lumberjack my "good god that's a good beer" eyes, then went back for seconds. I was a bit tipsy at this point, so I believe I gushed to the pourer that this was my new favourite beer, and he smiled and gave me a very genuine "thanks!"

Other beers I can remember from GABF:

New Glarus Wisconsin Belgian Red (Fruit Beer, 5.1% ABV): an awesome sour/cherry beer. SO AMAZING. The Lumberjack got my "hello what is THIS?!" face, at which point he reminded me that it's not available anywhere near the Bay Area. I can't decide if I would rather have never known it existed, so I wouldn't long for it so, or if it was better to have loved and lost, etc etc etc. End result, though - holy shit that beer is good.

Some horribly disgusting beer that was brewed with peppercorn. PEPPERCORN. It was revolting. The Lumberjack happily drank my sample then went back for more. We don't always like the same beer.

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