I really enjoy a lot of these but have never had the chance to visit any. Lawson's in Warren has a great chinookered IPA. Matt from Rock Art seems cool and very down to earth too. WE supported them when they were going up against Hansen's over the "Vermonster."
are you going for the "Drink vermont beer" t-shirt?
I am at that level now but I'm going for the box of undisclosed stuff by completing the tour. I don't have much good weather left as I am doing the tour on my motorcycle.
I don't really care about the stuff, just the Ale and the rides.
I rode to the Alchemist just after Rock art but they didn't open until after 3:00 and I still had to hit Burlington brew pubs and then back down south.
Next spring I'll ride the other way around the state and my timing will be better.
OK at the risk of offending some folks I will give you the reasons why I didn't like the Vermont Brewers Fest. These are my own opinions and experiences and I do not intend to belittle anyone with them. I was both a patron and a volunteer at this past years fest. Here goes:
As a Patron:
1. You had tickets to sample beer. I believe you received 10 tickets all beers were one ticket UNLESS you had a beer over 8% and then it was 2 tickets. You could buy more tickets after the first 10. Really? That is just terrible. I pay to get in let me sample the beer.
2. It is outside and it was hot! So I had to look at all these people walking around with there shirts off, many should have kept them on. And about 50% suffered from short mans complex.
3. Because it is outside people were walking around smoking which is bad enough but there were a lot of cigars as well. But as a non-smoker it was just disgusting. (I quit smoking 7 years ago).
4. The lines were very long and I found that most of the brewers were not interested in talking about beer at all. They just wanted to shuffle you along.
5. Of course being in VT the Dept of Liquor control was all over the place.
I could go on but will stop here.
As a volunteer:
1. It was poorly organized. There was no security. Regular staff members were used as security for the event. My wife who is 5"1' and 110lbs was asked to be security. There was some outside security staff but most look old and decrepit and incapable of providing real security.
2. Next they had my wife walk around and collect used ticket from th brewers in a 5 gallon bucket. People were rude and tried to take tickets out of her bucket as she was walking around. (at 6"6' and 300lbs I was slinging kegs, I would have gladly collected tickets!)
3. The night before they had a welcome BBQ for volunteers. When you show up to a BBQ for a beer festival there are 2 things I expect. BBQ and Beer. We got none of that. We had sandwiches from ALI_BABAHs and water.
So all of these thing affected the overall feel of the festival. I live 70 miles from Burlington and will never go again. For the best experience go the the Craft Beer festival in Boston. I'll comment on that one later!
We volunteered at the brew fest this past year and loved it. We had gone the year before and really enjoyed ourselves, so we decided to get involved this past summer. As a volunteer, you had to pay maybe $5, but who cares? Your best bet is to head to the education tent, where one ticket gets you several samples. And I always really enjoy jumping on the short lines... they usually have pretty interesting stuff.
Anyone have a chance to taste the lawson's triple maple? Probably the best thing I've ever tasted... Perfectly sweet.