Well, after a week of trying to beat my digital camera in to working, I lost the battle. I lost all my photos from the local Central Valley Brew Fest in Turlock, CA on May 10th. I was incredibly impressed with the turn out, as well as the selection provided by the craft brewers. There were 1000+ people that day, and while it was very nice to have it indoors- the space did not get truly utilized. It was crammed mostly on one side of the building, and attendees have still not fully learned festival line etiquette. But hey, it’s the second annual fest- there’s still time!
I was very surprised to see my favorite cider company, Two Towns from Oregon participating there. Their ciders are made with all natural fruits, and ingredients, and don’t reach over 8 grams of sugar. This is great because I love a good cider without the diabetes hangover to match. Their Bright Cider is light, crisp, and very refreshing. Not at all juicy like big house brands.
Turlock’s own Dust Bowl Brewing, a sponsor, released a new dark fruit ale, the Shame and Desperation. The beer (not the feeling) was a dark porter style with a very strong raspberry flavor. I enjoyed my taster of it, but I’m not sure if I would ever order a full glass, let alone finish one. It was also great to see Tioga Sequoia there in strong numbers. They brought a firkin of their Rush Hour, a coffee porter blended with coconut. Ummmm AMAZING! I think Rush Hour has easily become one of my favorites from them.
It was also very cool to see Bobcat Brewing, a new brewery out of Merced, California. It’s awesome to see the Central Valley being adopted by students, and transplants, who adopt these towns as their own- and build, or brew something amazing. I highly recommend their wheat beer- lots of refreshing flavors, and not heavy on the banana flavor from the yeast. That’s always a bonus in my book!
I had a great time talking with lots of beer representatives, I only wish that distributors or reps had brought more jockey boxes. It’s always better to taste something fresh than from the bottle! This is all a part of the learning experience. It was great that they brought out local food trucks, and you could go outside to eat. I wish that with the $20 DD tickets however that there would have been some sodas, or water provided for them. A steep price for not any perks except watching your friends drink 😉 My sweet K was DD that day, and I wish that there would have been that at least for him.
Overall, it was a great event. I just hope to see that another year will help expansion, more funding, and some smaller, more local breweries will be able to afford to participate. Thanks CV Brew Fest organizers for doing something amazing!