All beer fests great and small

Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Back in September I found myself stuck in the middle of nowhere (otherwise known as Roswell, NM) for the weekend. Rather than try to fill my time in the UFO Museum, I decided to make a 4 hour drive to the Mountain West Brewfest in Albuquerque. It was a huge festival that ran in the standard manner. You pay to get in and get a tasting glass that you bring from booth to booth getting samples of beer from each brewer.

Mountain West Brewfest – Blue Corn Brewing Tent

At this particular beer festival I saw someone walking around with a bottle that looked very different. I asked them about it and they said they had paid $5 for it back at the Santa Fe brewing booth. I stumbled my way (there were many samples that day) to that booth as fast as I could and scored a very rare 22 oz bottle of barrel aged scotch ale for $5.

Santa Fe Ever Changing Series – Highland Heath

That had to be one of the best scores I ever experienced.

Fast forward to this last weekend. I find a local event that managed to combine dogs and beer. The Bark n Brew event in Oviedo, FL sounded like a great idea. Unfortunately, crossing the streams doesn’t always result in hip mashups. Trying to combine dog vendors and beer vendors resulted in too few of each.  I paid $20 to get a card that allowed me exactly 10 tastings. No more, no less.

Bark and Brew Sampler Punch Card

The breweries present were nothing new and all of the non-local breweries were manned by event staff rather than brewery staff. I did manage to find one beer that I had not seen before.

Goose Island Four Star Pils

I would love to have added this bottle to my collection. But the event had an issue with glass and the person at the booth literally feared for their job if they let me walk away with the bottle. Far be it for me to put a man’s job on the line for my collection. So, I didn’t press the issue. But, I did get the other side of the win-lose dichotomy that was set in motion last September. All told, this beer will start showing up in all of the local beer stores and I will manage to get it sooner or later.  It’s just disappointing to walk away from a beer festival with only a punch card as a souvenir.

Author: UsedHair

I am a labeorphilist (one who collects beer bottles) looking to discuss the adventures often involved in obtaining the bottles and the challenges that accompany the hobby.

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