On Saturday, we spent the evening doing some seriously in-depth exploring of Washington beers at the Cask Beer Festival. At $40 a pop, it seemed a little pricey but I am a gal who loves beer and I figured that it would be a fun and informative experience. The event was sold out but it still never felt crowded, which was nice. This was no “balls to bum” overheated brotastic shit show that beer fests usually are. It was actually pretty relaxed and the people serving the beers were the actual brewers so it was nice to be able to chat a bit about the beer (read gush like a fan girl about how much I like their beer). Something I always try to do at these beer fests is keep notes on what I tried and what I think of them. Needless to say, I rarely succeed in this endeavor. This time, however, I was determined to not let myself be entirely washed away on a sea of hops and malt. Being moderately successful in this, below you will find my tasting notes and general impressions as the evening progressed.
Beer #1: Odin Stout brewed with orange peel – Nice, slightly bitter but overall a good stout. The orange flavor is balanced. Guy pouring advises me to not fill out my entire card (equaling 25 3 oz tastes…woof). I laugh like the redheaded Scotswoman that I am and suggest that maybe he shouldn’t question my drinking ability.
Beer#2: Elysian Blood Orange Pale – Spritzy and light. Very tasty.
Beer #3: Diamond Knott Brewing Apple Cinnamon ESB – Not too sweet. Good Apple Cinnamon flavor
Starting to feel a little buzzed after only 3 beers!
Beer #4: Ice Harbor Brewing Whiskey Barrel aged porter – Light for a porter. Hints of chocolate.
Beer #5: At the time of note taking, I did not remember. In my defense, I am distracted by pretzels
I eat a pretzel from Brave Horse served by an obviously stoned gentleman. The mechanics of this are quite difficult as I am still also holding my tasting glass. Andy’s extra hand is enlisted in exchange for bites. The pretzel is good for not being fresh from the oven in the restaurant.
Beer # 6: Scuttlebutt Oatmeal stout – slightly winey. Not my favorite taste in a beer.
Feeling a little warm and flushed. Thinking I may have the redhead glow
Beer #7: Naked City Double Dry Hopped IPA – Fruity and hoppy.
I notice that New Belgium is here. Are they honorary Washingtonians because they are from Colorado? Comrades in cannabis perchance?
Beer #8: Rainy Daze Hypocrite Double IPA – Hoppy but refreshing
I confuse Mt. Townsend Creamery “Seastack” cheese with “Sleestaks” and everyone laughs. We are thoroughly enjoying our cheese and charcuterie sticks. probably the best beer fest food I have ever had and a highlight of the evening.
Beer #9: Big Al’s Big Olde Ale – Very tasty and drinkable for a 9.5% beer. I gush to the brewer about how much I love their beer.
Beer #10: Boundary Bay Irish Red – I have a soft spot for reds. This one is light and slightly fruity. Very drinkable (as most reds are).
Beer #11: Silver City Whoopass – Always a favorite. Good, drinkable strong beer.
The glass dropping and attendant hollering has gotten more frequent (we count 11 of these incidences by the end of the night).
Beer #12: Port Townsend Pale Ale – Sweet and refreshing
Beer #13: Pike Brewing Black Octopus – not sure if I remember the name correctly. Nice chocolate notes and not too heavy
Beer #14: Maritime Salmon Bay ESB – “Tasty” is my only note
Five minutes left until they shut off the taps. Gotta get one more in!
Beer #15: Iron Horse IPA – Another one of my favorite breweries. Skunky/sweet, nice.
One of my companions declares, “I shot the Iron Horse and then got the amnesia.” – Yes you did, sir, yes you did.
Not only am I impressed with myself for taking semi-coherent “Notes” throughout this event, but I am also impressed with all the brewers who brought so many awesome beers. I am also amazed by my fellow drinkers for consuming large amounts of beer with grace, humor and aplomb!