It’s always craft beer week here at Food Republic, but thanks to the Brewers Association, American Craft Beer Week is official and it started yesterday! We’re talking really official, too. There are in fact two resolutions signed by the House of Representatives in support of the weeklong celebration.
As the craft beer industry grows, so do the number of American Craft Beer Week events. When it started in 2006, 124 breweries hosted events. Last year, the amount of events more than doubled from 2010, with 1,368 beer-fueled celebrations around the country. It’s the nationwide adaptation of the many state and citywide beer weeks — some notable ones going on right now include Seattle, Chicago, San Antonio and Long Island. If you want to celebrate you’ll need to know where to go. You can find a full list of events online here, but here are eight standouts on our radar this week from around the country. Find the one closest to you and drink your craft beer wisely.
1. Perennial Rarities at Meredian Pint in DC
Washington, DC would be a great place to be this coming Wednesday, May 15, to taste some rarities from Perennial Artisan Ales of St. Louis, MO. Perennial has an incredible commitment to ingredients and quality: they were on our list of breweries about to blow up in 2013, and they’re living up to the expectations. Try the excellent Saison De Lis, a Belgian-style saison brewed with chamomile flowers, or the rare Savant Beersel, a wild ale fermented with brettanomyces yeast aged on Missouri wine grapes.
2. The Lost Abbey Tap Takeover at OB Noodlehouse in San Diego
San Diego is home to some of the very best breweries in America. It’s hard to single one out and call it the best, but The Lost Abbey is the frontrunner for experimental brews. It would be highly advisable to seek out this tap takeover, where you can try eight diverse offerings like Devotion, a Belgian strong ale; Carnevale, a saison made with brettanomyces; and the highly regarded Framboise De Amorosa, a wild raspberry sour.
3. Deschutes Brewery Presents: Sausage Fest 3 in Bend, Oregon
You might recognize Deschutes from our list of best beers to drink while grilling. This Bend, Oregon brewery is certainly after our own heart, as they kick off American Craft Beer Week with Sausagefest 3. They’ll be serving up a different sausage and beer pairing every day, like lamb sausage paired with Twilight Summer Ale and basque chorizo sausage with Cinder Cone Red, and very special reserve brews on tap all week. Sausagefest 3 runs through May 19.
4. Barrier Brewing Springs Beer Dinner at Press 195 in Rockville Centre, Long Island
Panko-crusted jalapeño poppers stuffed with Nova Scotia lox and cream cheese served with a banana-pineapple salsa. A crispy taco stuffed with Mom Karp’s shredded slow-braised sweet brisket and caramelized onions topped with crunchy purple jalapeno coleslaw paired with Oceanside, NY local Barrier’s Dunegrass Double IPA. Whoa, let’s talk about a description that fits “foods I never knew I existed but am definitely not mad at.” Wednesday, May 15, you can have that and five more incredible pairings with Jewish-Latin themed food in honor of Long Island Beer Week and American Craft Beer Week.
5. Crafting a Nation: Colorado premiere in Denver
Here’s an idea for American Craft Beer Week: see a beer movie! Crafting a Nation is a documentary on how American craft brewers are rebuilding the economy at a time when many industries are struggling. This Kickstarter-funded movie holds its Colorado premier at Denver’s outpost of the Alamo Drafthouse on Thursday, May 16th at 7:30 p.m. If you’re interested at all in craft beer you owe it to yourself to check out this film. There are several other premieres nationwide during American Craft Beer week — check this schedule to see if it’s playing near you.
6. American Craft Beer Week Nationwide Toast
The place to be on Thursday at 8 p.m. Pacific Time is your local bar, where a nationwide toast among like-minded people will take place to American Craft Beer Week. Check the calendar at craftbeer.com to find the nearest craft bar to join in. Cheers!
7. Nationwide Nitro Simultap
Craft beer is all about coming together, and Boulder Beer Company is doing just that with a Simul-Tap National Tapping of Mojo Nitro at 4:20 p.m. at your local time at dozens of bars around the country. Mojo is a fruity IPA that has a kick at 7.2%, which you might not even notice thanks to the inimitable creaminess of the nitro pour.
8. Brothers & Sisters! 2Bros + Metropolitan in Chicago
Craft beer is about the passion and dedication that goes into making something truly special to drink, and there’s no better way to learn about it that than hearing brewers talk about their beer. It also happens to be Chicago Craft Beer Week, so check out two of Chicago’s local favorites, Metropolitan Brewing and Two Brothers Brewing Company. They’re teaming up for a meet-the-brewer event at Rock Island Public House, serving Metropolitan’s Arc Welder Dunkel, Iron Works Alt and Two Brothers 16th Anniversary on tap.
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