I love summer for two reasons - the beautiful weather and the plethora of beer festivals in Oregon! So, two weekends ago, my friends and I made it out to the PIB (Portland International Beerfest) in the Pearl District. I especially like this beerfest because there are usually a decent amount of dunkel beers (my favorite). AND...it just so happened to be my friend's birthday, so there was a large group of us attending.
It was out on the lawn in the North Park Blocks on NW Davis and NW Park Ave. This festival is smaller than the Oregon Brewer's Festival on the waterfront, but still just as fun and has shorter lines.
So, how it works - you get an official PIB glass, a beer guide and tickets that can be used for 4oz pours or pints of beer. Personally, I like to use all my tickets for 4oz tasters because I love trying new kinds of beer. Plus, if you don't like it, it is only 4oz!
Next you have to tackle the guide - I like to look through it to find the beers I want to taste. The guide tells you a little bit about the beer (type, brewery, alcohol content etc...), number of tickets for a taste and its location at the beer fest. It is all a little overwhelming at first, but once you get going, it is awesome! I always track down the fruit beers first because I am a chick and I like chick beers. But, of course, I tried others too! See below.
Hell or High Watermelon Wheat from 21st Amendment Brewery - I have tried this before - pretty good for a watermelon beer, but not my favorite fruit beer.
Raspberry Wheat from Cascade Brewery - this was the female favorite and it was not even on the guide! It was a replacement beer because they ran out of another one. Boy were we lucky!
*Anthem Cherry Cider from Wandering Aengus Ciderworks - there is an asterisk by this one because technically it is not a beer, but we did try it anyway! Very cherry flavored and had mixed reviews from everyone. Go figure the guys did not like it but some of the ladies thought it was refreshing and like a melted otter pop popsicle!
Spaten Munich Dunkel from Spaten West - always delicious! A dark wheat beer with flavors of raisins - it is like a dark hefe.
Ayinger Brau Weisse from Merchant du Vin - a tasty unfiltered Hef Weizen, always good for summer days.
De la Senne Equinox from Shelton Brothers - a nice belgium beer but with very strong flavors, I was disappointed I did not try more from this brewery because there were quite a few.
Beers I missed...but have to try!
John John Juniper Ale from Rogue Brewery
Franziskaner Dunkel Hefe-Weisse from Spaten West
Of course we tried a lot more beers, but I lost track. I tried to be official and circle them on my guide, but I only got about half way through before I got too distracted. Overall, a success and I wish I could say I went to the Oregon Brewer's Fest, but unfortunately I did not make it. You better believe I will be next year though!
Check out http://www.beernw.com/events for more beer events in the Northwest!