The Oregon Brewers Festival has been in full swing for two days now, but the weekend is coming and it's going to get crazier and crazier. With that madness in mind, here are a few beers that stood out. Having a plan will keep you from just wandering and bumping into people and going WOOOOOO for minutes at a time. Fun game: Start a "woo" shout at one end of the festival, and see if you can drunkenly run to the other side before the "woo" gets all the way across.
Keep in mind, the ideal way to drink these beers is in the shade, while eating a Gustav's pretzel bigger than your head.* Here they are, in order of which one I think of first:
Elysian Brewing's Oddland Spiced Pear Ale: This offering from Elysian's Oddland Series (bottles of which feature strange, bright, beautiful art by Jim Woodring) is brewed with pears, cardamom, and cumin. If the cardamom and cumin turn you off, this isn't even the only pear beer at the festival - Hopworks brought one with a better name, "Two Tickets to Pearadise."
Dortmunder vs. Portmunder: Occidental and Old Town bring dueling Dortmunder lagers (a German blond lager similar to Pilsner) to the party. Befitting its name, the Portmunder is the more new-world of the two, with a more complicated hop profile than the Occidental's characteristically authentic Tettnanger-hop-dominated bitterness. The best thing about a beer fest is that these beers can coexist. Shit, you got two hands, right? Unless you don't, in which case you should still try both beers.
Swill and & Juice: 10 Barrel brings their summer "radler," a mix of beer and juice in the German radler style, while Gigantic's & Juice is IPA and citrus juice in, apparently, the Snoop Dogg style. Both are delicious and pretty low ABV.
Finally, check out Oakshire's OBF 26. Oakshire brewed the beer specifically for the festival, and it's a summer day delight: light golden color, bright citrus-spicy smack, and lingering hop bitterness. YUM.
All the info you need about the Oregon Brewers Fest can be found here.
*Head and pretzel sizes vary, and Gustav's does not have a "bigger than my head" size. Just take what you can get and/or shrink your head.
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