Meet me in San Francisco

Possibly my favorite beer event ever is happening in less than a month. This year’s SF Beer Week is February 11th through 20th and will feature a plethora of beer events of all kinds, from your straightforward special tappings to unique food pairing events like Strong Beer & Strong Salads, Grilled Cheese Sandwich pairings, Oyster and Stout nights, Pig Roasts and even Daily Beer Cocktail specials. All of these are among a zillion other unique events highlighting the amazing diversity of San Francisco foodie culture.
I am so in love with SF Beer Week that I travel there every year, and consequently have never made it to Portland’s Zwickelmania, which happens around the same time. This year will be even better, as I plan to be hosting 2 events myself…

Last year’s trip to SF was fraught with sleeplessness and drunkenness. While I had a great time, it ran me ragged trying to make as many events as possible and realizing I could only make a small fraction of them. Two of the first posts on The New School chronicled last year’s trip (Part 1 and Part 2).
This time I will be traveling with Belmont Station Manager and occasional Upright Brewing assistant Neil Yandow, who I hope will keep us on track a little.
As recently reported on The New School and on the Bay Area beer blog All Over Beer, Upright Brewing has signed a deal with Lime Ventures to distribute small amounts of their year-round beers in Northern California. As I was already planning to be in SF, I thought I might be able to share a few of the other Upright beers available in Portland and have fun doing it at some of the best bottle shops in the Bay. I will probably be bringing down some kegs, including one of a special blend of Clausenii Seven (Seven aged with Brettanamyoces Clausenii) and Special Herbs (Gruit aged in Old Tom Gin Barrels). It’s a really good, sour, fruity, funky treat. Another keg will be Early Harvest, an unblended barrel of Late Harvest that contained one of the spices that went into the final blend. I’ll probably also have some special bottles, too, so if you’re a California reader and will be around please, come say hi to me at either of these 2 events:


Upright Brewing at The City Beer Store
Wednesday 2/16 6-9pm
1168 Folsom St
Suite 101
SF CA, 94103
(415) 503 1033
http://www.citybeerstore.com/
The City Beer Store is like the Belmont Station of San Fran. True, it is much smaller, but it packs a lot into a tiny space, with only the best bottled beer (and even some taps) for the patrons. They host lots of brewers and special tappings, and I am excited to hang with fellow lovers of beer.
Photo from Push Eject and SF Weekly

Upright Brewing at Beer Revolution
Sunday February 2/20 time?
464 3rd Street
Oakland, CA 94607
(510) 452-2337
http://www.beer-revolution.com/
I have not been to Beer Revolution, yet but the word on the street is it is spectacular. Just looking at their lineup of events in SF Beer Week cements it. Modeled after The City Beer Store, they only opened about a year ago and are clearly going out of their way to bring in the best. I imagine this will be one of the best places to find Upright beers in the Bay Area. We will be hanging out at the bottle shop on the last day of beer week sometime in the afternoon. Apparently they rock BBQ on Sundays…
If you’re looking for a guide to the best SF Beer Week has to offer, I combed over the calendar very thoroughly trying to figure out my plans. I am quite positive nothing will work out as I want it to, but it will still be a fantastic time. Here is my breakdown of the most interesting events onevery single day of Beer Week, if I was forced to choose between them:
Daily Events:

Beer Cocktails at Alembic

The Alembic Bar 1725 Haight St.
San Francisco, CA 94117
12pm-2am everyday
Special menu of Beer Cocktails (made with beer, spirits made by brewers, and brewing ingredients)


Strong Beers and Strong Salads
Social Kitchen & Brewery
1326 9th Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94122

4-10pm everyday
Who says beer only pairs with pizza and sausage? During February, SKB is hosting its Strong Beer Social, when we’ll have 5 strong beers (more than 8% ABV) on draft. During SF Beer Week, each strong beer will have a special, boldly-flavored salad paired with it by Brewmaster and Master Cicerone Rich Higgins.
Photo by Unnecessary Umlaut

Humphry Slocombe Beer Ice Cream

Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream 2790 Harrison St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
12-9pm everyday
Beer & Nosh and Humphry Slocombe are teaming up again to feature special beer ice creams for SF Beer Week. Featuring a range of flavors all week long and highlighting San Francisco Breweries. Featuring flavors made from Almanac Beer Co, 21st Amendment, Speakeasy, Magnolia and ThirstyBear.

Firestone-Walker Beer Pairing Menu

Paragon San Francisco
701 Second St.
San Francisco, CA 94107
1130am-10pm everyday
Paragon Restaurant & Firestone Brewery team up to offer a kick%*! 3-course tasting menu available during Beer Week. Featuring 3 Firestone special releases perfectly paired to Spencer O’Meara’s gastro pub cuisine AND Double Jack on draft for $3.00 a pint! Life doesn’t get much better…for more info call 415.537.9020 or visit paragonrestaurant.com


3-course menu paired with Magnolia beer

The Alembic Bar 1725 Haight St.
San Francisco, CA 94117
5pm-1am everyday
3-course Prix Fixe menu with Magnolia beer pairings
Friday February 11th
SF Brewers Guild Opening Gala
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
701 Mission St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
5-9pm
This festival brings together over 35 Northern California breweries and their brewmasters to pour their unique, rare, and collaboration beers. Music from the Whisky Pills and The Brothers Comatose. Local restaurants will have food available for purchase. Keepsake stemmed glass included. Don’t miss SF Beer Week’s Kickoff Event, the SF Brewers Guild Opening Gala! Join the breweries of the SF Brewers Guild and more than 30 other Northern California breweries for a night of incredible beer, including the tapping of the first barrel of the Brewers Guild’s collaborative brew, a whiskey-barrel-aged Imperial Common!

Saturday February 12th
SF Beer Week Event


Meet the Brewer: The Bruery Brewery Brood at Beer Revolution
Beer Revolution 464 3rd St.
Oakland, CA 94607
2-6pm
Come hang out with the fine folks from behind the Orange Curtain as we host a day full of fine brews brewed by the Bruery Brewery! Has your tongue fallen out yet? Hopefully not, as we’ll have a bevy of delicious beers on tap, and a gaggle of Bruery folks here to entertain and dazzle you.

SF Beer Week Event

Ommegang Spring Training
Amnesia 853 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
5-7pm
Sampling of limited/small-batch Ommegang brews. The Cooperstown brewery is providing free peanuts and crackerjacks for the early happy hour. More information coming!
SF Beer Week Event

New Beer Release: 1776 from Local Brewing Co./Thirsty Bear Brewing Co.

ThirstyBear Brewing Co. 661 Howard St..
San Francisco, CA 94105
6-9pm
Local Brewing Co.’s first commercially available batch of “1776 India Black Ale,” brewed here at ThirstyBear! Join the brewers from both companies to taste and celebrate the launch of San Francisco’s newest upcoming brewery. The beer is also available throughout SFBW at Kilowatt, Range, and The Sycamore. More details at www.localbrewingco.com

SF Beer Week Event

Full Circle Scottish Ale Event – Beer to Beef!
Devil’s Canyon Brewing Company 111 Industrial Road #7
Belmont, CA 94002
6-9pm
Feast on a Devil’s Canyon Ranch steer, local bread, cheese & desserts all forged with components from our award winning Scottish Ale. Graze on oysters,
tartare, flatbreads, malt cupcakes, variations on pit roasted steer, & house-made charcuteries. Celebrated Underground Dining group graffEats & BBQ Guru Ryan Ostler will put their spin on things.

Sunday February 13th

SF Beer Week Event

2nd Annual SF Beer Week Beer Run

Social Kitchen & Brewery 1326 9th Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94122

11am

Join Brian Yaeger, author of Red, White, and Brew, Bryan Kolesar, beer writer for the Washington Times, and Derrick Peterman of “Ramblings of a Beer Runner” for a unique SF Beer Week event celebrating running and craft beer, for a run through Golden Gate Park. All runners get $1 off their post-run beers at Social Kitchen & Brewery.
SF Beer Week Event

Breweries of Tomorrow Nanobrewery Festival
Social Kitchen & Brewery 1326 9th Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94122
5-9pm
Join SKB and AllOverBeer.com to try the beers of and toast the brewers looking to quit their day jobs, such as Elizabeth St. Brewery, Local Brewing Co., Pacific Brew Labs, Bosworth Brewery, 510 Brewing, and others. $15 for keepsake glass, 2 SKB drafts, and lots of nanobrews. SKB’s food will be available for purchase, too, should you get munchy.

SF Beer Week Event

Beer Judging 101: Tasting and Describing Beer

The Englander 101 Parrott St.
San Leandro, CA 94577
330-5pm
Hone your ability to recognize and describe flavors and aromas in beer. Sample and compare fine beers as we explore the impacts of ingredients and the craft of brewing. Led by David Teckam, Grand Master II BJCP judge, with Brian Cooper and Gail Williams. A second session has been added to accommodate demand; both sessions are expected to sell out.

SF Beer Week Event

Beer and Cheese of the British Isles

Commonwealth Cafe and Pub 2882 Telegraph Ave.
Oakland, CA 94609
6-8pm
Oakland’s new British pub, Commonwealth, hosts a beer and cheese pairing featuring fine cheeses and ales from Scotland, England and Ireland. Certified Cicerone Nicole Erny has crafted the pairings to highlight the rich traditions of beer and cheese making in the U.K. Mon doon yer Local!

Reservations Required: please email nicole@nicole-erny.com

SF Beer Week Event

Grilled Cheese & Craft Beer

The AMERICAN Grilled Cheese Kitchen 1 South Park
San Francisco, CA 94107
630-830pm
Enjoy artisanal grilled cheese and craft beer pairings at this intimate event hosted by SF’s only gourmet grilled cheese restaurant and the central coast’s premier craft brewery, Firestone Walker. $30, includes food & beverage. Register: http://grilledcheeseandbeer.eventbrite.com/

SF Beer Week Event

Cask & Quesos — Triple Fermented

Social Kitchen & Brewery 1326 9th Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94122

12-4pm

Two fermentations wasn’t enough, so Casks & Quesos has grown into Triple Fermented, a celebration of fermented grains — barley into beer, wheat into bread, and grass into cheese (an utter type of grain fermentation). Featuring over a dozen traditional cask ales expertly paired with artisan cheeses and breads.

FESTRYEVAL
Taps 205 Kentucky St.
Petaluma, CA 94952 1130am At the most recent GABF, Bay Area brewers brought home 3 medals for beers featuring the tasty adjunct grain rye. In addition to the 3 decorated ales, the Bay Area is also home to a large community of rye brewers. Celebrate the use of this grain at the inaugural FESTRYEVAL!

SF Beer Week Event
Peninsula CalTrain Pub Crawl with Wet Your Whistles
Firehouse, Tied House, Rose & Crown, British Bankers Club 111 S. Murphy Ave.
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
1-7pm
Join Wet Your Whistles on a Caltrain Pub Crawl :
– Firehouse in Sunnyvale
– Tied House in Mountain View

– The Rose & Crown in Palo Alto
– The British Bankers Club in Menlo Park
We’ll spend an hour at each location to enjoy a beer. For all the details, please visit www.wetyourwhistles.com/SFBeerWeek2011.html.
Monday February 14th

SF Beer Week Event

Brewery Night: Russian River Brewing Co. at Pi Bar
Pi Bar

1432 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
3-1130pm
Spend Valentine’s Day enjoying the many releases from Russian River Brewing Co. On the line up we’ll have Blind Pig, Damnation, Consecration, Redemption, Rejection, Pliny the Younger, and a few other surprises yet to be announced from the brewery.

SF Beer Week Event
Brewery Night: De Proef Brouwerij at Beer Revolution
Beer Revolution 464 3rd St.
Oakland, CA 94607
6-10pm
An evening with De Proef Brewing of Lochristi, Belgium! De Proef rep. Alan Shapiro will be in-house to answer any and all your queries about this enigmatic Belgian brewery. We’ll be pouring a collection a De Proef beers, including collaborations with Bell’s, Terrapin, and Allagash!

Tuesday February 15th
SF Beer Week Event

Sierra Nevada Beer Camp Beers

Rose & Crown Pub
547 Emerson St.
Palo Alto, CA 94301
1130-200am
We will have the pleasure of bringing to you some beers created by the famous SN Beer Camp. Plus, we will be pouring the American inspired Schwarzbier that was brewed at camp with one of our own.

Botanical Beer Night
Mill Valley Beerworks

173 Throckmorton Ave.
Mill Valley, CA 94941
A night devoted to the herbal and hop-less, we will be highlighting some of our favorite gruits, botanicals, and hop-less beers.
Expect to see a few of Mill Valley Beerworks Botanical series, as well as other special offerings from local breweries.

Beer Dinner: Russian River at Mission Gastroclub
Mission Gastroclub
Near Mission/26th San Francisco, CA 94110
7-10pm

We’re big Russian River Brewing Co. fans. 14 seats, head to our website/email to reserve.
1. corn dogs, spicy slaw with dead leaf green
2. rabbit confit, frisee, red onion, egg with russian river ipa
3. kriek-braised rabbit saddle, pearl onion, marble potato with damnation
4. liege sugar waffles, salted caramel ice cream with consecration

SF Beer Week Event

Oysters and Beer
Magnolia Pub & Brewery
1398 Haight St.
San Francisco, CA 94117 12-4pm

A variety of oysters a variety of ways (on the half shell, barbecued, and fried) and a variety of beer to go with them.


Firkins and Franks and Beers from the North Bay

Public House 24 Willie Mays Plaza at AT&T Park
San Francisco, CA 94107
4-10pm
A night featuring some special beers and firkins from the North Bay including Moylan’s, Marin Brewing Company, Iron Springs, and Lagunitas. Other firkins will follow from Stone, Magnolia, Speakeasy, Firestone and some sausages from local producers that we’ll run for the rest of the week. Ballpark tour at 5:45, with beer purchase, for the first 40



Brewery Night: Mikkeller

Amsterdam Cafe 937 Geary St.
San Francisco, CA 94109
7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

It’s finally here, all the unique Mikkeller beers you’ve been thirsting for, including Beer Geek Brunch, Black Hole, East Kent IPA, Stateside IPA, To/From, Big Worse, Chipotle Porter, Ris a le M’Ale and many more…

Wednesday February 16th

SF Beer Week Event

Meet the Brewmaster: Fal Allen of Anderson Valley Brewing Co.
Pi Bar

1432 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
3-1130pm

Meet Brewmaster Fal Allen. Pi Bar will have eight Anderson Valley beers on tap, including a new beer release and special barrel-aged beers!

SF Beer Week Event

Beer Breakfast
Social Kitchen & Brewery

1326 9th Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94122
730-1130am
Start Hump Day off right — like a reverse-mullet: party in the front, business in the back. Join us for a balanced breakfast of biscuits and gravy, 4505 Meats sausage, cheese grits, banana bread pudding, Social Kolsch, and Big Muddy Weizenbock! We’ll have Office Space on the tube, too. Make Mad Men proud. We won’t tell your boss, if you don’t!
SF Beer Week Event

Meet the Brewer: Terrence Sullivan of Sierra Nevada
Beer Revolution

464 3rd St.
Oakland, CA 94607
6-10pm
We welcome the return of the Sierra Nevada to our humble home! Brewmaster Terrence Sullivan will be bringing down a bevy of barrel-aged and other “brewery-only” releases for your enjoyment and eddification.
SF Beer Week Event
Brewery Cellar Dinner
ThirstyBear Brewing Company 661 Howard St.
San Francisco, CA 94105
6-9pm
Multi-course dinner in the fermentation cellar, paired with ThirstyBear beers, finishing with tank and rare-barrel tastings. $60 (tax and tip included)
SF Beer Week Event

Meet the Brewers: Ballast Point at Monk’s Kettle with Sculpin Vertical
The Monk’s Kettle

3141 16th St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
530pm-2am
The Monk’s Kettle will be pouring one of the best IPAs around, Sculpin, three different ways, until the kegs run dry. Available will be regular Sculpin, Sculpin on nitro, and Sculpin brewed with habanero pepper. The Ballast Point crew will be on hand to discuss these and their other fantastic beers.
SF Beer Week Event

Drake’s Sau & Brau
Drakes Brewing Company

1933 Davis St. #177 San Leandro, CA 94577
6-830pm
Drake’s Brewing and The Chop Bar-Oakland present a Pig Roast and Barrel-aged Beer Dinner at the brewery in Celebration of San Francisco Beer Week. Space is limited and advanced tickets only. Please check out the Drake’s website for ticket information.
Thursday February 17th
SF Beer Week Event

New Beer Release: Jack ‘n’ Jolly from Drake’s Brewing Co.
Toronado
547 Haight St.
San Francisco, CA 94117
6-1130pm

This is the release of our very rare/limited Jolly Rodger seasonal ale that has been aged in Jack Daniel’s oak barrels. There were only three kegs produced. This beer will be released at 6pm on 2/17 at 3 different venues around the SF Bay area. Come on down to the Toronado and get some for yourself, while supply lasts.
SF Beer Week Event

Meet the Brewmaster: Tomme Arthur of Lost Abbey/Port Brewing Co.

Beer Revolution
464 3rd St.
Oakland, CA 94607
6-10pm
Dude, come on down for a totally gnarly night as we host Tomme Arthur of the bitchin’ Port/Lost Abbey Brewing empire! Surf’s up!
SF Beer Week Event

Meet the Brewer: Brian Hunt of Moonlinght Brewing Co.
The Monk’s Kettle
3141 16th St.
San Francisco, CA 94103

530-9pm

Meet our favorite brewer Brian Hunt and discuss his mad scientist ways. We will be pouring some of his no-hop beers and other concoctions that have broadened the world of beer. Brian is a legendary figure and we are proud to pour his beers and host him. Food pairings will be available for all beers poured that evening.

SF Beer Week Event

Festival of Firkins
Magnolia Pub & Brewery
1398 Haight St.
San Francisco, CA 94117

Festival of Firkins, 11am until they’re gone.

Brewery Night: Dogfish Head
Amsterdam Cafe
937 Geary St.
San Francisco, CA 94109

7-11pm
Join us as Dogfish Head takes over the Amsterdam Cafe with it’s off-centered and rare beers! Drafts include: Bitches Brew, Theobroma, Sah’tea, Old School, World Wide Stout. Bottles include Chicory Stout, Burton Baton, Pangea, Midas Touch, Palo Santo and 90 Minute IPA. Glassware available…plus lots more DFH.
Friday February 18th
SF Beer Week Event

Meet the Brewers: SF Brewers Guild at Speakeasy

Speakeasy Ales & Lagers 1195 Evans Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94114
4-9pm
Come meet the brewers of the SF Brewers Guild at what is, year after year, a time you won’t want to miss. Local music, food, and special access to Speakeasy’s rocking brewery, makes this night one of the most fun of the year!
SF Beer Week Event

Afternoon with SKB’s Master Cicerone
Social Kitchen & Brewery
1326 9th Ave.
1230-230pm

Meet Rich Higgins, drink some beers, and chill out with other like-minded beer-curious folks. At 1:00 PM, Rich will give a guided tasting of SKB’s strong beers through the tasting and exam lens of the Cicerone Certification Program.
SF Beer Week Event

Firestone Vertical with Head Brewer Matt Brynildson
The Monk’s Kettle
3141 16th St.
San Francisco, CA 94103

7-10pm
Two Firestone verticals available to drink while discussing them with head brewer Matt Brynildson: Union Jack, 2009 Double Jack, and 2011 Double Jack on tap; and Firestone 14 on tap with glass pours of Firestone 13 poured from the bottle. Food pairings will be prepared by Executive Chef Adam Dulye.
SF Beer Week Event

Brewerry Night: Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Zeitgeist
199 Valencia St.
7pm-1am

Join us for a night of tasting some new, old, and rare beers from the Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Come hang out with some brewery characters, and enjoy some of the fine products Sierra Nevada has to offer.
Saturday February 19th


Pre-Barleywine Festival Sausage and Beer Brunch

Magnolia Pub & Brewery 1398 Haight St.
San Francisco, CA 94117
9:30 am – 12:00 pm

Pre-Barleywine Festival Sausage and Beer Brunch.

SF Beer Week Event

New Beer Release: Special Release from Anchor Brewers and Distillers

Pi Bar
1432 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA 94110

3-11pm

Anchor Brewers and Distillers will be releasing a new and exciting beer. Details are being kept a secret! What will it be? Pi Bar will be one of the few lucky to debut this limited release.

SF Beer Week Event
Meet the Brewers: Food Truck — the Brewers Edition
Tied House Brewery and Hermitage Brewing Company 1627 S. 7th St.
San Jose, CA 95112
12-5pm
Join us for the best mobile eats paired with the best local breweries from Silicon Valley and beyond. Just like the great minds that brought you Google and the microchip, these foodies and breweries are ahead of their time, and just all-around awesome. Don’t miss these great eats, local brews, and fantastically fun times.

Sunday February 20th

Celebrator 23rd Anniversary Party
Trumer Brauerei
1404 4th St.
Berkeley, CA 94710
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm

30+ breweries pouring their best beers, catering by Emergency BBQ, meet and mingle with Celebrator writers and beer industry veterans.

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Samurai Artist
Samurai Artist

Founder of The New School and most frequent contributor Ezra Johnson-Greenough has worked in the craft beer industry for almost 10 years, doing everything from illustrating beer labels to bartending at renowned beer bars and breweries like Belmont Station, Apex, Laurelwood and Upright Brewing. He has also had a hand in creating events like the Portland Fruit Beer Festival, Portland Beer Week, and the Brewing up Cocktails series. He is available for freelance consultation in marketing, events, graphic design and branding. Contact: SamuraiArtist@NewSchoolBeer.com

Discussion

  • Harry
    Harry
    Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:54 PM

    Sounds good but when is Portland Beer Week?

    • KeAloha
      KeAloha
      Wed Jan 19, 2011 9:46 PM

      I went to the City Beer Store in October and the only thing I didn’t like about it is that it was really hot in the store, so all the non-refrigerated beers sitting in really hot temperatures. I don’t think it helped the condition of some of the beers I picked up.

      • Anonymous
        Anonymous
        Thu Jan 20, 2011 3:02 AM

        Yea, What’s Portland BORE Month got going on?

        • Melissa
          Melissa
          Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:35 AM

          This lineup looks really impressive, except that if you know the Bay Area and the breweries located there, you’ll notice that:
          A. Many of the breweries featured in these meet-the-brewer nights aren’t even from the Bay Area…some are from as far away as San Diego, NY, and Belgium. Isn’t the point to highlight the local beer? Sadly, they really don’t have enough good breweries in SF to make a week’s worth, though, if they made that distinction.
          B. Many of the locations aren’t in San Francisco, or even Oakland, and will require quite a bit of driving around the Bay Area (and plenty of bridge tolls) to attend. Hope you’re bringing a DD with you to those.
          C. Jeezus, who picked the locations for the Caltrain pub crawl?! Those are probably the 4 worst bars near Caltrain stations on the entire peninsula for a beer drinker. I did a crawl like that for my birthday a couple years ago, and none of those were on the list.
          D. Many of my friends in SF are beer geeks, and the only event that the local beer geeks really get excited about in February is 21st Amendment and Magnolia’s annual joint Strong Beer Month, where they make 5 beers each that are only available that month, and are all delicious and/or unforgettable. THOSE are worth going to SF for, and you can go any day in the month you like. 🙂

          • Brian Yaeger
            Brian Yaeger
            Sun Jan 23, 2011 11:34 PM

            First and foremost, I pray for your liver. Hope to see you down there during my short stay. I forget–what days are you down there altogether?

            Secondly, wow Melissa, negative much? Admittedly, meet the brewer events for non-Bay Area breweries isn’t a great way to celebrate all that’s local. But here’s the beauty–even if you skip those, there’s still over a hundred great events to choose from! While it’s calls San Francisco Beer Week, it’s really SF Bay Area Beer Week. So to say there aren’t enough good breweries there is, to put it mildly, incorrect. (Of course, “good” is subjective. If you don’t like the beers from Anchor, Speakeasy, Russian River, Bear Republic, Triple Rock, Magnolia, Moylan’s, Lagunitas, Black Diamond or the other 30+ breweries in the area, that’s too bad/so sad.) But if the stellar panel of judges at the GABF can be trusted in their blind tastings, NorCal earned 18 medals to all of Oregon’s 19. This isn’t a pissing match, but hopefully it’ll make you rethink your stance on breweries south of the border.

            Oh, and as for your SF beer geek friends, if they don’t like the long-running anchor events like Toronado’s Barleywine fest and the Bistro’s DIPA fest, to say nothing of the mesmerizing beer dinners, fun pairings, and other festive events–I’m afraid they’re not in tune with all the other local beer geeks you mention.

            Sorry for venting. Hope that wasn’t dickish of me.

            • Melissa
              Melissa
              Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:46 AM

              hey, I lived in the Bay Area for several years, so I do have plenty of experience as a beer geek in the Bay Area.
              Yes of course, there are a few good breweries in the Bay Area (although it looks like you are casting a pretty broad definition of what the “Bay Area” is, if you’re including Russian River (Sonoma County) Bear Republic (even further north in Mendocino), and Black Diamond, but yes, those are all fine, fine breweries. Maybe I scrolled past some of the better events because I had a hard time spotting them amongst all the other chaff, but yes, I have had a good time at every event I’ve been to at the Bistro, including the DIPA fest. The BW fest at Toronado is next to impossible to get into and enjoy, however, unless you happen to have industry hookups to get seated at the “judges table”. I haven’t been to that event in years because of the circus it’s become, but the beers served are phenomenal.