GABF 2014 | Friday Recap
We’ve been running on high-octane this week at the 2014 Great American Beer Festival. If you have been following our coverage, you’ll know that we’ve had the good fortune to make it to events all over town in addition to this week’s official GABF festivities. This re-cap from Friday comes to you post award’s ceremony and as we struggle to decipher what day of the week it is, we hope you are reading this with a delicious craft beer in your hand and your body in a comfortably reclined position — after all, it’s Saturday, right? I think.
The day started with the Brewers Associations Media Luncheon where we were let in on some great news about the state of beer in the United States as well as some new programs in place with the BA. Of particular note: GABF dates for 2015 will be September 24-26. Insightful panels were accompanied by baller beer & food pairings; thoughtfully curated by certified cicerones from the BA and the Chef at the Grand Hyatt Denver. Unfortunately, we had to slip out of there a little early as we were running a little behind to make it to the 6th Annual Denver Rare Beer Tasting benefiting Pints for Prostates (more on that later).
Friday’s GABF session definitely felt much busier than the first day. As we made our way into the convention center, we made it our goal to explore a few more breweries outside of our southern California comfort zone. We were excited for 10 Barrel and Gigantic Brewing, both from Oregon as well as tried-and-true Logsdon Farmhouse Ales (whose Peche N’ Brett has my heart).
After navigating through a swarm of people (who were surprisingly quite drunk within the first hour), we made our way to see some of our California peeps. Kevin Wright and the Hangar 24 folks were out and about. Three Weavers Brewing had a beautiful end-cap booth with handmade wood signage made by Knotty Woods. Paid our respects to TFP friend and family member Dr. Bill Sysak at the Stone Brewing booth, John Maino at Temecula’s Ironfire Brewing, and the lovely ladies of Firestone Walker (we’re big Jemma and Veronica fans — the fellas too, of course). Newly named Golden Road Brewing Head Brewer Victor Novak manned their booth for a portion of the evening — a change of scenery from Novak’s 15 year tenure at Taps Fish House & Brewery where he gained notoriety for being the most decorated GABF medal winner in southern California. *
There was silent disco provided by Oskar Blues. Epic karaoke…and so many of those goddamn pretzel necklaces (can we quit it with those already)? We eventually made our way out of the session in dire need of sustenance before making quick stops at Falling Rock and Star Bar — because that’s just what you do. We’re still standing…somehow.