Sunday, September 30, 2012

Event review - Brews on the Bay

Back in 2004, several of the craft breweries and brewpubs in San Francisco formed the San Francisco Brewers Guild, and one of their first events was Brews on the Bay, a beer tasting fundraiser for liberty ships, hosted aboard the S.S. Jeremiah O'Brien, a liberty ship moored at the Hyde Street Pier, just around the corner from the Barbary Coast Brewery.

This year was the 9th annual Brews on the Bay, but the first time that I've attended. With me were Dr. P, our friends Anna and Aish, their friend Lee visiting from New Zealand, and Dr. P's friend Claire.

Over the years the Guild has expanded; this year, BotB included 15 breweries (including several homebrewers who've made the jump to commercial brewers) serving almost 60 beers, as well as four local food trucks and two bands. The $50 ticket price gets you unlimited tastings; the food is extra.

Overall, I thought this was a good event - we had good weather (which can be dicey in SF in September), the crowds weren't too bad, and the setting of the Jeremiah O'Brien is pretty spectacular, right on the water with great views of the City and the Bay.

I ended up tasting about 20 of the beers. Obviously I can't give you a full review, but believe it or not I did take notes! (Actually, those who know me will probably have little trouble believing this...). I rated each beer 0 (meh), + (good), or ++ (outstanding). Here's what I had, and what I thought of them:

21st Amendment, 21A Saison: ++
21st Amendment, Hop Crisis Imperial IPA: +
Almanac, Honey Saison: +
Almanac, Extra Pale Ale: +
Almanac, Bier de Mars w/ Fennel: +
Beach Chalet, Catcher in the Roggen: 0
Beach Chalet, Harvest Pale Ale: 0
Beach Chalet, Bier de Garde: +
Mateveza, Black Lager: +
Magnolia, Proving Ground IPA: +
Pacific Brewing Laboratory, Squid Ink Black IPA: +
Pizza Orgasmica, IPA: +
Schmaltz, He'Brew Hop Manna IPA: +
Schmaltz, Albino Python: +
Southern Pacific, IPA: +
Southpaw BBQ, Mild at Heart:0
Southpaw BBQ, Matchhead Red: 0
Speakeasy, Scarlett: 0
Thirsty Bear, 2012 Wet Hop Hopmeister:+
Thirsty Bear, Brown Bear (cask conditioned): ++
Triple Voodoo, Grand Cru: 0

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