May 11, 2008

American Craft Beer Week

It's a big week for brewers and beer fans alike. All this week, from Monday May 12th to Sunday May 18th it's American Craft Beer Week.

American Craft Beer Week (May 12-18), which is celebrated annually, highlights
the industry and culture of craft beer. This year, breweries and beer makers
will also recognize their collective charitable contributions. For the first
time ever, the Brewers Association announced U.S. craft breweries' charitable
contributions, and for 2007 they are estimated to be more than $20 million.

Changed to a weeklong event in 2006, the inaugural American Craft Beer Week
was recognized by the U.S. Congress with House Resolution 753 (PDF file). The week has continued to grow with interest and support from beer enthusiasts and the media. In 2007, more than 150 brewers registered their community celebrations at

So, uh, celebrate!

Be sure to get out this week, there's an incredible amount of interesting beer events in the area, and they should be taken advantage of.

All week long at Max's in Fells Point will be their 2nd Annual Craft Beer Fest. They'll have an incredible amount of good beers on tap, and will feature a brewer or style each day of the week. That looks incredible.

In D.C., many of the nation's most prominent brewers will offer their selections and lecture in various salons at the SAVOR "An American Craft Beer & Food Experience" event. Tickets are pricey ($85/day), but it will run from Friday through Sunday. Again, that looks like an incredible event.

With all these great brewers in the area, we're fortunate that some will host a handful of interesting events. Notable:

Tuesday 5/13 and Wednesday 5/14: The Lupulin Reunulin/Kill Dave Tasting featuring five great brewers at D.C.'s The Brickskeller. Pizza Port/Lost Abbey, Russian River, Avery, Allagash, Dogfish Head. Tickets are $35, I believe.

Thursday 5/15: Sierra Nevada Fresh Hop Ale Tasting at the Brickskeller in D.C. They'll present their "Southern Hemisphere Harvest Ale", which is much-anticipated.

Thursday 5/15: Stone Brewing Company Pint Night at Axis Bar & Grill in D.C. Stone's a personal favorite of mine, from my old hometown of San Diego. Giveaways, pint glasses, reps, and brews like the Stone IPA, Arrogant Bastard and Smoked Porter (which is delicious).

And, unrelated but important, it's the Preakness on Saturday! Maryland is privileged enough to host the second leg of horseracing's Triple Crown and Kentucky Derby winner (and potential dynamo/Triple Crown winner) Big Brown will be running.

Saturday 5/17: Pints for Pets Brewfest in Hollidaysburg, PA. All proceeds benefit the Central PA Humane Society. Tickets are $25 to $30, and they expect upwards of 50 brewers and distributors to attend.

Saturday 5/17: Brandywine Valley (PA) Craft Brewer's Festival. Tickets are $30, hosted by Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant.

Saturday 5/17: 7th Annual Virginia Beer Festival in Norfolk. Tickets are $25-$30.

Saturday 5/17: 1st Annual Yardley (PA) Beer Fest supporting the Yardley Flood Relief Mitigation Fund. Tickets are limited.

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