Vermont Brewers Festival

The Vermont Brewers Festival is an annual event, and every year, tickets sell out fast.  This year, tickets sold out in a record 11 minutes!  I’m lucky enough to sit at a desk all day long, so I was able to score tickets to the Saturday evening session for me and Ben.  This is the first year either of us have been able to attend, so we were very excited.

For the price of $30, you get a commemorative 5 oz sampling glass, and 15 sample tickets, which means you can try up to 15 beers.  Most beer samples were only one ticket, but some of the higher alcohol content beers were two tickets each.  You could also purchase additional beer tickets if 15 samples wasn’t enough for you.

The event takes place in the Waterfront Park, which affords beautiful lake views and an awesome sunset for the evening session.  With almost 50 breweries in attendance, as well as lots of food vendors, a good time was had by all.

Me and Torey

Me and Torey

I’m gonna be 100% honest here and state that I couldn’t remember 90% of the samples I tried without a little help.  15 samples times 5 oz each equals just over 6 beers (our buddy Pete also gave me one of his tickets, so that’s even more!), which is quite enough to get me feeling good.  I actually went to the Brewers Festival website to try and jog my memory.

  • Bobcat Cafe:  Kolsch.  Light, crisp German Ale
  • Burlington Beer Company:  Margarita Gose.  Like Budlight lime, but way better.  Fruity and refreshing without being artificially sweet.
  • Drop In Brewing Company:  Supernova IPA.  Hoppy and delightful.
  • Foley Brothers:  Forgotten Ale.  Surprisingly good for a sour beer.
  • Harpoon:  IPA.  I was sad, because I asked to try their special Citra, but the guy misheard me and gave me the regular IPA instead 😦 I’ve had it many times, and it’s good, but I wanted the limited edition sample.
  • Prohibition Pig:  Pro Pig Extra Pale Ale.  Pretty standard pale ale, nothing special.
  • Queen City Brewery:  Yorkshire Porter.  Yum.  I love dark beers.
  • Stone Corral:  Palomino Pale Ale.  Again, pretty standard pale ale, nothing special.
  • Sixpoint:  The Crisp.  Hoppy lager.  More like a pale ale than a lager.
  • Whetstone Station:  Fort Dummer Summer Ale.  Light and yummy.

So yeah, that’s only 10 out of the 16 that I can remember trying.  And really, after 5 or so samples, everything starts to taste the same, especially if you’re drinking hoppy or strong beers.  There were a few breweries that I would have liked to hit, but the lines were insane; like, stretching from one end of brew fest to the other insane.

This was the line for Lawson's--you can see it stretches all the way back past that tree in the left corner!

This was the line for Lawson’s–you can see it stretches all the way back past that tree in the left corner!

Lawson’s Finest Liquids and Hill Farmstead  are two that (in my humble opinion) aren’t that amazing/aren’t doing anything super different from other breweries, but a) they’ve perfected the art of supply and demand (you can’t get a lot of it, it’s not available a lot of places), and b) recently got written up in some publications as really good beer, so people are flocking to them.  There was plenty of delicious beer at plenty of other breweries, and I didn’t have to wait in line for an hour to try them.

The atmosphere at this Brewers Festival was WAY different and more relaxed than the one we go to in Providence , RI every year.  First of all, being outside, while a crap-shoot if the weather is bad, was amazing.  It was a bit overcast, so it wasn’t blazing hot, and there was a nice breeze.  It wasn’t at all claustrophobic, and actually had a festival feel, unlike being locked inside a convention center.  The food vendors were totally overpriced, but it’s nice that they were there in case people needed food to be ok, whereas in RI, there was a limited amount of free pizza, and that was it.

The commemorative glasses that they gave out are really nice, and I know we’ll use them around the house; RI had crappy plastic dixie cups.

Photo Jul 19, 5 35 26 PM

While the RI brew fest had unlimited samples, I was totally cool with the 15 tickets in VT.  It made me more mindful of how many samples I was getting, and I was a lot more selective about what I tried.  And we still left feeling pretty buzzed.  There were plenty of port-a-potties, and even some nice bathroom trailers, with flush toilets and running water, so the waits weren’t too bad.

Yup, I took a picture of the potty trailer.

Yup, I took a picture of the potty trailer.

For the price, the Vermont Brewers Festival is an excellent value, and I hope that we’ll be able to get tickets every year.

Did you make it to the VT Brewers Festival?

Is there a Brew Fest that happens near you?

What’s your favorite beer?

Manic Monday – 07/21/14

Welcome to another edition of Manic Monday, where I recap the previous week, and lay out a plan for the following week.

This was my first week recommitting to the #Chewsday Challenge, and my first week of my new training schedule, so it’s kind of a big deal.  Overall, I’m pleased with how it went.  I didn’t get in as much cross-training as I’d like, but the good news is, I’m still biking to and from work pretty much every day, which really helps keep my overall fitness/activity level up.

Monday (Scheduled Cross-Training Day)
Ben and I were thoroughly exhausted from our reunion weekend in Maine, and it was pouring after work, so all I did was bike to work in the morning (~3.7 miles).

Tuesday (Scheduled Hill Repeats)
I woke up at 5:30 am and got my tushie over to Battery Street Park for some hill repeats.  The hill there has about 193 feet of elevation over about 1/8th of a mile, so it’s a great hill.  To the hill from my apartment is a good little 1/2 mile warm up, and then I went down and up the hill three times, and home.  Total mileage was 2.25 miles with an average pace of 11:07.  I also walked to work in the morning (2 miles) and rode my bike home (~3.7 miles).

Photo Jul 15, 6 17 48 AM

Wednesday (Scheduled Cross-Training Day)
I rode my bike to work and from work, for a total of about 7.8 miles.

Thursday (Scheduled 3 mile run)
Totally slept in instead of running, but I did do a 1:30 plank, and rode my bike to and from work (~7.8 miles)

Friday (Scheduled rest day)
Since I skipped my Thursday run, I squeezed it in after work.  I only made it 2.4 miles because it was really warm and sunny, but it was better than nothing.  I also rode my bike to and from work (~7.8 miles)

Photo Jul 18, 5 36 34 PM

Saturday (Scheduled 6 mile run)
So, I didn’t run.  Ben and I slept until 10:30, and then spent a leisurely day watching Netflix, playing video games, and cleaning.  And it was just what we needed.  In the evening, we went to the VT Brewers Festival (recap coming soon!), which was lots of fun.  Afterwards, we stopped by a friend’s birthday party, and then I went home while everyone else went to the bars.

Truth

Truth

Sunday (Scheduled Rest Day)
I wish I could say that after being lazy on Saturday, I got my run in on Sunday.  Sadly, this is not the case.  I slept in late again, and while Ben was gallivanting to a barbecue two hours away, I continued to clean and video game.  It was awesome.  I think Ben ended up being a bit jealous that he didn’t stay home too.  We ended the evening with home made chicken curry on brown rice and Netflix.  Sweet deal.

So how was week one of the new plan?  All in all, not too bad.  I haven’t made it over to my new gym yet, which is kind of sad, but I’m planning to pick up my ID card on my lunch break today, so that I can hopefully make it to a class or two this week.

Friday Free-For-All (Seven)

Welcome to Friday Free-For-All, where I talk about everything and anything on my mind.  Sometimes it even makes sense!

I bought my first running skirt, and I’m kind of in love.  It’s by Reebok, and while it’s a little shorter than I might like (it barely covers my tush), the built in shorts make sure I don’t feel like I’m flashing my butt to everyone I run past.  And of course, it hides the dreaded chub rub and camel toe.  The only thing that’s weird is that the sole pocket is upside down on my leg.  I can’t figure it out.  My only guess is that maybe this is actually a tennis skirt, and the pocket is to hold an extra ball?  Anyone know what’s up with this?

Seriously, what is this pocket?

Seriously, what is this pocket?

I got a haircut this week.  I’ve been growing out the pixie for months, and while I was finally exiting the super awkward phase, my hair was starting to do this crazy Farrah Fawcett-esque flip that I was so not into (you may have seen this on Twitter/Instagram).  While the cut looks fab, I’m a little upset because he pretty much took off all the length I managed to gain over the last 6 months.  Sadpanda.  No more haircuts for a while.

Vermont Brewer’s Festival is this weekend!  I’ve been legally able to drink for 8 years, but I’ve never made it to Brew Fest.  This year, tickets sold out in 11 minutes, but I was lucky enough to score 2 for me and Ben.  I’m very excited to try lots of tasty, Vermont-made beer!

Click for Source

Click for Source

Beat the Blerch virtual race. The actual race sold out in a matter of minutes, so they are now offering a virtual option for $45.  This is super cool, except for the fact that they’re only offering registration for SEVEN DAYS.  I don’t have an extra $45 lying around right now, and I don’t want to put it on my overused credit card.  Maybe I’ll change my mind before July 22…

Click for Source

Click for Source

Tigger Two-fer:  Remember when I won the Tigger award at work?  And got an oh-so-fuzzy stuffed Tigger?  And took him on adventures?  Well, as the result of my efforts on a special project, I GET TO KEEP TIGGER FOR ANOTHER MONTH!  Woo!  It’s basically my mission to keep winning this award so I can keep him forever.

Pretty much how I feel about Tigger

Pretty much how I feel about Tigger

That’s all for me, friends!  I hope you have a fabulous weekend!

Running skirts:  yay or nay?

Tell me about the worst haircut you’ve ever had.