We were at Winter Beer Fest last night and there are dozens of reasons why you should go today. There are 34 Washington breweries pouring 86 different beers (approximately). I’d say those are 86 reasons to go. If you don’t like good beer, then this is not the event for you. If you are stuck at home with the swine flu, please don’t go. Other than that, there really isn’t any reason to miss it.
For us WABLs, the WABL hour is a pleasure. For one hour the crowd is practically non-existent. You move freely and can easily chase down the things on the list that sound most intriguing to you.
Here is a list of some of our favorites, though we must admit we didn’t try all 86 beers. We will post the winner of the People’s Choice award tonight when it is announced.
Snipes Mountain was pouring a couple things we liked. The ’08 Bourbon Barrel Pumpkin Death warmed me right up. Kim, Mrs. Beer Blog, was overwhelmed by the Fresh Hop IPA.
Naked City Brewery gets the award for the best tap handle for the Big Lebowski Imperial Stout. We liked the beer a lot, but also loved seeing the Dude on the tap handle. Their Bing, cherry spiced dubbel, was also one of our favorites.
Ram Northgate was serving up their Bi Clops – Belgian dubbel. This might have been my favorite. It’s hard to pick a single winner amongst so many great beers.
Port Townsend, Grey Sky Winter Rye. Kim said that this beer paired extremely well with the chocolate cupcakes that the Chocolate Box was serving at the chocolate booth.
Schooner Exact, Hoppy the Woodsman. I think I am finally beginning to warm up to these wooded beers. This was the big winner at last year’s Winter Beer Fest. It may be again this year. Nothing too eloquent to say but… damn good beer.
Lazy Boy, Mistletoe Bliss A and B. No surprise here. Kim and I both adore this beer and this brewery. We liked both versions of the Mistletoe Bliss.
Black Raven, Petite la Mort. Stop the presses! Hold the bus! Shut the front door! This beer is un-effing believable.
Big Time. ’nuff said. They’re pouring Malaprop 8 Abbey-style, Yulefest, and Decade 2.1. They are all outstanding.
Diamond Knot, Industrial Ho Ho ’07. This beer has laid down well. Pat Ringe (brewer) was pouring when I visited. As good as this beer is right now, he assures me it will be even better in a year or two.
There are a ton of beers we did not try, and there were plenty of good ones we missed. You cannot do them all unless you want to start spitting out beer for the sake of tasting. I don’t do that. Here are a few photos.