Converted from paper version of the Broad Ripple Gazette (v04n15)
99 bottles of beer on the lawn - part two - By Lisa Battiston
posted: Jul. 27, 2007
The Broad Ripple Microbrewers' Festival proved to be a hit with everyone-including the Gazette staff. We have view points on numerous beers from three different writers... Enjoy.
When I found out I would get to cover the 12th Annual Microbrewer's Festival on Saturday, July 21, 2007, I was ecstatic. Hundreds of beers were featured at the event with some quite local Indianapolis favorites, including Brugge Brassiere, Broad Ripple Brewpub, Alcatraz, Ram and the Rock Bottom Breweries on both 86th Street and downtown.
I'm not going to pretend like I know a lot about beer. I recognize that there are dozens of different kinds, dozens of different ways to make each kind, dozens of different factors that go into making the fizzy alcoholic beverage. But, being a creature of habit, I generally stick to a few staple beers I know I like. Keeping that in mind, I was excited to be in an atmosphere where there would be hundreds of beers I knew I'd never tried before.
First on my list was Two Brothers' Bitter End pale ale, known to be quite bitter (obviously) but supposedly refreshing. It wasn't my cup of tea (er, pint of beer?) only because I don't exactly like really bitter beers, but my fault for choosing a beer that would've obviously been bitter.
On to Founders' Rubaeus Raspberry Ale. Maybe this is the wuss in me talking, but I could've had seven little two ounce glasses of this beer. It was one of several fruit beers featured at the fest. It wasn't too sweet, but obviously quite fruity and very clean.
Next came local Rock Bottom and their Kolsch, which won a silver medal at the State Fair the week prior. It was quite light and crisp. Loved it.
Around this time, we needed a little beer break. We'd only consumed 10 oz. of beer, but I was feeling a little over-beer'd. Luckily, several restaurants were in attendance, including some fresh corn on the cob, Hoghead's, BadaBoomz and Yats. Yats had their Chili Cheese Étouffée, which I love, so it was food time. And, once finished, upon meandering back to the beer tents, we noticed the keg toss. For ten dollars, any man or woman could throw a keg as far as they could in order to win a kayak provided by Rusted Moon. After a renegade keg got thrown a little too close to my general vicinity, we quickly vacated for more beer.
Then on to the Firkin Tent where I sampled Three Floyds Fantabulous Resplendence. With a name like that, how can you not want to try.
But I'm telling you. Do not try. I may not know much about beer, but I know that that beer was not fantabulous, nor was it resplendent.
Then on to a cider, Gale's Hard Cider. It was a little flat and a little tinny. I've had better ciders, but it wasn't bad.
Last on my list was Bloomington Brewing Co.'s Freestone Blonde. I settled on this only after a friend of ours suggested another fruit beer, the Shmaltz He'Brew Origin Pomegranate Ale, which was apparently infused with a ridiculous amount of pomegranate juice. Unfortunately, we couldn't find the Shmaltz booth through the hoards of beer drinkers, so I settled on the Blonde. I'm sad it's the last beer I tried, as it seemed a little watery.
And there ends my beer judgment. It was an interesting experience, to actively seek out the positives and negatives in the tastes of a beverage I normally don't appreciate. The Microbrewers' Fest made me realize the complexity of beer. It also made me realize I normally order crappy beer. So will I be there next year? You betchya. And maybe I'll start drinking better beer to prepare.