There are quite a few beer festivals out there to choose from. You also usually see the usual suspects at most of them.
If you are looking for something a little different, OK, a lot different, then Drink to Independence and attend the Beer Fest For Beer Geeks, which will take place outside of the Stout Burgers & Beers in Hollywood this Saturday, July 23.
Drink to Independence is billed as a celebration of Belgian Independence Day, but all you need to know is that this is an actual Belgian Beer Fest for Beer Geeks. 22 Belgian breweries will be pouring a pair of beers each alongside five American breweries. There is a special bottle list, but that requires either VIP tickets or extra payments and frankly, the draft list should provide plenty of Belgian styles to try.
Here are my suggestions:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge – Brewmasters Edition 10.5% – Gulden Draak matured in Whiskey Barrels.
Brouwerij Huyge – Deliria 8.5% – A Belgian Blonde introduced in 2013 and brewed by women only.
AND Argentum 7.8% – A Belgian IPA brewed for Delirium Tremens 25th birthday.
Brouwerij De Dolle – Arabier 8% – Dry hopped Belgian Golden Strong
BOM Brewery – Kinky Berry 6.9% – “Sour ale brewed with Cherry, Blueberry, BOM roasted blueberry, blackberry, elderberry, apple, pear, and banana.” No longer available in the U.S.
AND Wild & Funky 5.4% – “A sour beer consisting of 3 separate fermentations: 1 part wild, 1 part funky, and 1 part young beer. The wild is a product of mixed fermentation with lactic acid bacteria, a Brett yeast from an original porter, & Champagne yeast. The funky is created from a mixed fermentation with lactic acid bacteria, their own cultivated Brett yeasts, & a white wine yeast. The young beer is brewed with the special BOM A & B malts and fermented with BOM yeast. One of the exclusive ingredients of the Wild & Funky is the Poiret Apple & Pear Syrup from Siroperie Meurens. This syrup delivers a pleasurable apple sourness after fermentation.” No longer available in the U.S.
Brouwerij Rodenbach – Grand Cru 6% – A Flanders Red-Brown that consists of a blend of 1/3 young beer and 2/3 beer matured in foeders.
Tickets are $60 and $90 for Regular Admission and VIP respectively.
The second revolution of Luponic Distortion is now out in cans and bottles and it is the Beer of the Week. ‘Cause, hops. Revolution 002 has seven hops in the blend with only two having appeared in 001 and even more amazingly, Firestone Walker has NEVER used three of the hops before. According to brewmaster Matt Brynildson flavors include peach, Sauvignon Blanc, grapefruit, honeydew melon aroma and even gooseberry. One note, check the neck of the bottle to make sure that you are buying 002. Some 001 stragglers might be out there.
Your Homework for the week is to conduct a beer and food pairing test. I saw this idea in the book Beer Pairing: The Essential Guide from the Pairing Pros by Julia Herz and Gwen Conley. Assemble four different styles of beers and four different small bites (appetizers) and then try one beer with one of the food items, be it cheese or chocolate or chili. Then try that same food with a different beer. Then try that beer with the next food item. It is a great learning tool to see how an IPA might react with jerky as opposed to how a brown ale might.
Find more of Sean Inman’s writing on his blog, Beer Search Party.