Action figures sold separately

gdmatAhhh, the life of a semi-professional beer drinker!

We must drink, thirst or no. And it is a work I dreamed of as a young boy. A life fulfilled. But it’s not all fun and games. There is labor involved. Planning. Costs. Food. Fuel. Sleep deprivation. The processing of alcohol. The processing of opinions.

And yes, the joy. The sheer joy. Saving the world through good drinking is indeed a fun way to live.

alchemyIt was bright and early on Saturday morning, and I’d covered my two shifts for the day. I’d gotten some meat roasting for my staff to deal with that evening. And I’d gotten gas. With my trusty companion, Kyle The Brother-In-Law, nestled into the passenger’s seat, we were on our quest. To Madison. For Great Taste of the Midwest Tickets.

Here’s the dealio on why I would drive seven hours (one way) to get tickets for a beer festival: it’s a really freaking good beer festival. That’s it, in short. Last year, Wonderful Beer Wife and I put in for the snowball’s-chance-in-hell mail lottery, and scored on our first try. We hit the festival, and sho’nuff, the rumours were true: it’s a really freaking good beer festival. Locally focused and everybody brings their big guns.

aleasylumactionThis year, we were concerned about taking chances on the mail-in style of purchasing tickets. So Kyle and I volunteered for the mission: Go, drink good beer at cool places, and get up early to stand in line, and buy said tickets.

It was a lovely little whirlwind trip. We hit Great Dane, Alchemy Cafe, Riley’s, Ale Asylum and Capital Brewery. We brought back a load of good stuff to drink over the coming weeks. No one got hurt.


Sucks, it does, getting up at 6 am. And it sucks further when you’ve been beering it up the night before. But, beer action heroes must perservere. Up, showered and in line at 7am. To wait 5 hours. I was #109. And that meant I got 2 tickets. Yipee! Mission accomplished! We’ll be at the Great Taste in August.

Now, to find a hotel…


5 Responses to Action figures sold separately

  1. Bailey says:

    How good can it possibly be!? Better than the slightly depressing Great British Beer Festival, I guess, for which I would queue no more than 10 minutes…

  2. Wilson says:

    It really is a very nice fest. Well-organized, well-run, and in a beautiful setting. A beautiful park next to a lake with Madison’s downtown skyline in the backdrop. Focused on Midwestern breweries from a handful of states. Everybody brings their big guns: barrel-aged this and ass-kicking that. Tix limited to 5500, so it’s not ungodly huge.It really is a terribly pleasant festival. I’d stand in line for 5 hours again. We had a great time last year.

  3. Brew Dudes says:

    Got tickets for this fest in our neck of the woods happening this June.

    Fairly giddy about it.

  4. Wilson says:

    Bailey–the other thing is that there really is no arm-twisting involved in a roadtrip from time to time, especially to a good beer town like Madison. It was fun, not a chore. The tickets are merely a bonus.

  5. Matt says:

    I am sooo gonna miss this festival. Have a great time!

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