Freshops Tastival and the flavor of beer

Felecia and I went to the Freshops Tastival at the NW Lucky Lab last week where 16 or so beers of seasonal Northwest bounty were available on tap. I think it's one the better beer festivals I've been to, There were hardly any lines, people were kind, and one got the feeling of sampling unique beers hardlyconceived of by the general beer-drinking public. It made me feel rich in local culture.

And though drinking at the Lab's never the same without our buds, Jen & Patrick, I say: "The beers were great."

Following the Great American Beer Fest in Denver, there's been an ongoing argument over at Beervana (a quality beer blog) about the quality of Oregon beers that started with their perceived lack of balance to the tongue of a particular comment-writer. As a man of humble pedigree there's not a lot I can say on the subject except that judging beer shouldn't be like judging a dog show. The beers I tried at the Freshops Tastival were bold, experimental, new, fresh, and local. Those are the qualities that mean something.

...As opposed to something completely meaningless like...

I saw this news article today about Miller and Bud producing flavored, seasonal beers. I didn't realize that regular beers were not flavored. This is clearly a breakthrough. Here are some choice quotes...
"Consumers have a broader drinker's set today and are looking for different options and different products," McGauley said. "We know they're going to be looking around and we're going to provide beers and products that really satisfy those needs.... According to Mintel Research, the top selling flavor last year was regular, but second was pumpkin, which brewers such as Coors Brewing Co.'s popular Blue Moon label roll out in the fall harvest season. Rounding out the top five? Honey, vanilla and nut, respectively.
Good night.

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