The inaugural Iowa Craft Brew Festival, pulled together by the good folks at the Iowa Brewers Guild, launched May 21 with a sold out crowd, great weather and loads of tasty beer.
As I spent most of my time pouring (my beer!) at the Rock Bottom booth, I wouldn’t be in the perfect position to offer a critique from a festival-goer’s perspective. Everyone seemed to be having a good time, and I know that the brewers were enjoying fraternizing with their kin–and sampling each others’ wares.
My guess is that the space was maxed out and that we could have used a few more portapotties, and that there is nothing but a bright and growing future for both this event and the Iowa brewing scene.
Many of the 20-ish Iowa brewers participated in a joint aging of beers in Templeton Rye barrels, and several of the beers I tried were phenomenal (honestly, I didn’t get around to trying many). Other standouts from my limited tasting perspective were Backpocket Brewing’s lager-licious-ness and Rock Bottom’s Matador, an (if I remember this right) impy schwarz with chilis, cocoa nibs, piconcillo sugar and cinnamon aged in a Buffalo Trace barrel.
Good times, good times. I’ll let a few photos speak the other thousands of words. Hope to see you there next year…