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Friday, May 08, 2009

A Round of News

A Friday morning omnibus post of news from around the beer-o-sphere...

Let us start with the important news first. Tomorrow is FredFest, an event that promises to collect together more good beer in one place than anyplace since ... well, the last FredFest. There are a limited number of tickets, and apparently there are still a few left. Enticements: FredFest is hosted by Hair of the Dog, a place with the finest beer vibes in the city; the regular beer list is amazing (an old keg of Tony Gomes' legendary Doppelbock--likely the last one left on the planet--is going to be tapped after fifteen or so years, there's a '98 Full Sail beer, Double Mountain's barrel Ingelmonster, etc.), as is the list of rare and specialty beers up for silent auction is astonishing; all the proceeds go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of America. I have decided the event is not in my budget, so you should also go and report back so I'll know what happened. Take good notes on that Saxer Doppel!

Tomorrow, 2pm-6pm, Hair of the Dog brewery. Tix here.

Beer Cit(ies) USA
Charlie copped out: he has unsatisfyingly declared both Asheville and Portland Beer City USA. Man, was that a waste of a lot of time and energy. I'm not even sure what he's talking about in the announcement:

This was the first Beer City USA poll. Ballots were cast during a time when the emergence of local beer communities began to be relevant. For the future, beer communities and networks will need to exist and find common cause to preserve choices.

Seller beware! Offer choice and offer quality or beer drinkers just may go elsewhere.

On more of a big picture view, many Americans feel that the quality of life in the USA has been seriously eroded over the past decade. What happened with Beer City USA polling is the kind of local, regional and community support many are seeking to foster to bring back quality, value and purpose. Local food and beverage producers seek this kind of grassroots enthusiasm. Small, local and independent businesses will strive to connect with the qualities that matter....

Who gets top honors? I’m honoring both Portland, Oregon and Asheville, North Carolina this year. They are number one in the east and number one in the west with about 6,000 votes apiece. What, no definitive Number 1 and Number 2? Correct. Is that a cop out? I don't think so, but of course beer drinkers are an opinionated group of individuals and may beg to differ.

I don't fault Charlie for trying to do a cool thing here, but he should have talked to someone who's been involved with the internets for a few years: online polls are wildly inaccurate, hugely unscientific, and easily prone to mischief.* Good intentions, but...

Seattle Beer Week
First it was Philly Beer Week, then SF Beer Week, and yesterday was the first day of Seattle Beer Week. (Resist, Portland, resist!) If you happen to be up in the Emerald City, you may have a gander at the schedule of events and check something out. A couple local bloggers (1, 2) are busy covering events)

*Counting IPs doesn't work, expecially as we enter the age of wi-fi and iPhones. Measuring traffic has constantly been a pain in the ass for websites, and it's no different with online polling.

1 comment:

  1. Fred fest:

    A 1994 Saxer Dopplebock! It should be like sucking on a fossilized prehistoric remain! ;-} A 1994 Thomas Hardy or JW Lee's Harvest? OK! That sounds good! But an 8% Dopplebock from the brewery that proudly gave us Lemon Lager??? Hmmm.

    ...and an Imperial Wit from Astoria! I need a bottle of that to cellar next to that bottle of Blond Stout I have down there! I have imbibing visions of Mr Clean in a shot glass!

    Oh.. I don't know who wins these Silent Auctions, but I bid $60 for a bottle of Firestone Walker 10 last year and I think I was out bid like 9 times!! Great for charity I guess... but $150+ for a bottle of beer just doesn't seem right... :-O

    Beer Cities:

    All I have to say is... Who looks stupid now?

    Seattle Beer Week:

    Yes, this is very cool! Portland has had Beer Week or Beer Month for some time now, but it's cool to see the time, diversity and organization put into these Beer Weeks. I think it's a great idea to hone it down to one celebrated 7-10 day, big blow out beer event.

    I also love the fact that these Beer Weeks are celebrating beers from outside their city limits. Seattle has the Avery tasting, Dogfish tasting and a German Ayinger tasting. Pretty cool!

    Then .... Beer dinners, Organized Pub Crawls, 2 kick off parties, beer battles, guest speakers, brewers and it just goes on and on.

    It's a lot of cool beer related stuff packed into 10 days.

    Portland kind of already has done the whole beer week (month?) thing. I seem to remember some haphazard smattering of funky beer happenings, lightly strewn across July last year... Of course, it appears these other cities have taken Portland's example and just decided to enhance and expand on that idea and make it into a multi-faceted well honed and oiled cooperative event. Anybody hear the laughs from Ashville? :-O

    The Doctor's not to concerned, he'll be drinking prehistoric beer, Mr. Clean in a shot glass and the ever rare and unique Hop Czar! Nothing says 'Rare and Unique Beer' like a good commericially available muddy, murky hopped overdone Imperial IPA. (sigh) Yes sir! It's going to be quite a day...

    Resist?! Well, after the Beer City fiasco... How desperate and insecure do we really want to look? It would look pretty pathetic at this point to say, "HEY! Look we're doing a "Better" beer week too...!"

    Hmmmm... I wonder if I'm creating even more incentive... I know how Portlanders hate being one upped and are so tired of looking like the Bastard Red Headed Step child of the West Coast ;-}

    Nope... not worth it!