Disclaimer: In exchange for a review of this event, I received one entry ticket.
The 2016 San Diego Winter Brew Fest, held at the Hall of Champions in Balboa Park, celebrated beer and cider from numerous local breweries, as well as from brewers around the US. The event organizers are based in Denver, and also hold winter and summer beer fests in Colorado’s capital.
One of the sponsors was Naked Juice. Confusing, eh? Haven’t you always wanted to combine beer with a celery, wheatgrass and spinach smoothie?
I was actively seeking out less-than-usual flavors at the Winter Brew Fest; the first glass on the list was from San Diego’s Mission Brewery. IPAs (India Pale Ale) are usually more bitter due to the hops, so calling this one coffee-flavored was an easy way out.
Duck Foot Brewing Co., also based in San Diego, produces this gluten-free beer. Never mind that you might get drunk or worse, but you always have to watch out for your digestive system..
I wasn’t too familiar with IPAs’ before coming to the Brew Fest, though after trying a few – including Helm’s Brewing Co’s offering – I started to crave green tea.
Boulder, Colorado-based Redstone Meadery (mead implies honey, water and yeast) had already run out of everything else on the menu, so I tried the only one left, their passion fruit nectar. Sure enough, it tasted of maracuyá, so they get credit for that.
Raleigh, NC-based House of Hops gets a hint of credit for being self-aware. Peanut butter ale? It was a reach, but I do find peanut butter irresistible, much more so than that Japanese peanut “cream…”
Although I would’ve been more eager to try it had they been New York apples, I’ll give the Salem, OR-based Anthem Cider a pass, since the event mostly focused on breweries west of the Mississippi. Refreshing, and not too sweet.
Thanks again for the invite, San Diego Winter Fest organizers!
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