Freaktoberfest 2011
The Best Events of NY Craft Beer Week 2011

The Best Events of NY Craft Beer Week 2011

Posted by: on Sep 16, 2011 | One Comment

It’s that time of year once again… New York Craft Beer Week kicks off tonight bringing some of the world’s best beers to the Big Apple. From September 16th through the 25th, dozens of breweries from across the nation and around the world will feature their newest fall beers, finest year round drafts and special one-off pours throughout the five boroughs. And with this year’s festivities coinciding with the first week of Oktoberfest, its time for New York to get downright sudsy with some of the best beer events of the year. And, of course, we’re taking I Drunk That to the street to cover all the action of 2011 NY Craft Beer Week!

While this week’s calendar can be a bit overwhelming, fear not. Below is a list of the best NY Craft Beer Week events, broken down by day to keep you properly boozy all week long. Keep an eye out for our lens at a lot of these events and be sure to say hi!

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 16th

4th Annual Freaktoberfest
The official kick off party of NY Craft Beer week is just that… one major party. Bands, burlesque, and outstanding beers kickstart the week at this all-you-can-drink, two floor, Brooklyn blowout. Shmaltz Brewing Company bring their whole corral of brews including Geektoberfest, a collaboration with Captain Lawrence and Ithaca Brewing Company made specifically for Craft Beer Week. Bear Republic, Bruery, Pretty Things, Stone and many more join in alongside some special “guest brewed” featuring local homebrew heroes. Top it off with some fantastic live music, including amazing funk from NYC’s own Otis Funkmeyer, and you’ve got quite a night to remember. $50 gets you in and tickets are still available at the door. 7pm – 1am.

MORE EVENTS:



SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 17th

Oktoberfest at Radegast Hall
So this is not a Craft Beer Week event, per say, but it is Oktoberfest so today is a great chance to kick back with a liter of feistbeer and a sausage at Brooklyn’s best biergarten. Radegast will have live music, an honorary keg tapping and the annual Oktoberfest pig roast. The festivities continue all week but tonight is the big kickoff. PROST!

MORE EVENTS:



SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 18th

Brew and Chew
Crafting beer has always been a close cousin of culinary exploration and this annual event showcases some of the city’s finest homebrewers and their kitchen counterparts. Spend the afternoon in Greenpoint tasting pairings from seven chef/brewer teams. Proceeds will be donated to hurricane relief efforts in the western Catskills through the MARK Project. $30 gets you in the door and tastings of each pairing. Buy Brew and Chew tickets here. 3:00pm – 5:00pm.

MORE EVENTS:



MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 19th

Allagash Night at The Stag’s Head
We’ll at the Brooklyn Brewery celebrating the release of Garrett Oliver’s “Oxford Companion to Beer” but we WISH we were uptown at the Stag’s head where they will be pouring some of Allagash’s finest. If you crave Belgian brews than don’t miss this event with Interlude 2010, Confluence, Victoria, Vrienden, Curieux and Tripel all on tap.

MORE EVENTS:
If you’ve got the loot, Rest hosts Ultimate Brewmaster’s Deugstation, a massive six-course pairing dinner.



WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21st

Beer Cocktails at Taproom 307
Cocktails and beer have a long and sorted history together. And while we have recently seen beers inspired by cocktails, tonight is a night for cocktails inspired by beer. Join Taproom 307′s Beer Sommelier, Hayley Jensen, as they mix and even dry-hop exciting new cocktails inspired by the brews from Ithaca Beer Company. In their words, “Cheers to a little booze at Beer Week!” 7:00pm – 2:00am

MORE EVENTS:



THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 22nd

Brewery’s Choice at City Winery
While it may be a pricey ticket, NYC Brewer’s Choice at City Winery was our favorite event from last year’s NY Craft Beer Week. Co-hosted by Dave Brodrick (Blind Tiger) with a keynote speech from Garrett Oliver (Brooklyn Brewery), the evening will feature 20 brewermasters on hand to discuss their libations. Each beer will be paired with fare from some of NYC’s finest chefs and artisanal food producers Consider this the ultimate beer and food pairing. $55/$75, 6:00pm – 10:00pm

BONUS: Check out our photos from the 2010 Brewer’s Choice

MORE EVENTS:
Gingerman pairs very old Dogfish Head beer with very stinky cheese from Murray’s ($45)


SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24th

NY State Beer and Cask Ale Festival
While Rattle N Hum has fantastic events every night during Craft Beer Week, this afternoon’s Cask Ale Festival is our pick of the bunch. $5 beers all night from Great South Bay, Greenport Harbor, Blue Point, Captain Lawrence, Sixpoint, Barrier, Rooster Fish, Bronx Brewery, Ommegang, Kelso, Empire, Chelsea, Brooklyn, Pearl Street, Southampton, Southern Tier, Lake Placid, Keegan Ales, Crossroads, Davidson and more along with casks from around the country. Perfect afternoon drinking!

MORE EVENTS:

Belgium Comes to Cooperstown 2011

Belgium Comes to Cooperstown 2011

Posted by: on Aug 1, 2011 | 2 Comments

There is something classically American about the summertime beer festival. These large, outdoor, events are the grown-up equivalent of the weekend camping excursions or long road-trips I used to take as a youth and then throughout college. This time, however, you are taking that trip with a few hundred of your best, new-found, beer friends. Held annually at Ommegang Brewery, Belgium Comes to Cooperstown is pinacle of the east-coast’s summer beer festivals.

Now in it’s eleventh year, the 2011 Belgium Comes to Cooperstown event was part camp-out, part beer festival, and part live concert. It kicks off with a few hundred people camped out on the 140 acre Ommegang property… an old hop farm that now produces some of the finest Belgian-style beers in America. Then, of course, there is beer… over 75 breweries from around the world came and shared some of their finest, and rarest libations. Standouts included rare bottles of both Rosso e Marrone and Cuvee de Castleton from New York’s Captain Lawrence Brewery, Chardonay-Barrel-aged Stateside Saison from Stillwater Ales, a hoppy-session ale from Vermont nanobrewery Lawsons Finest Liquids and Scratch #44, a massive Belgian quad brewed with Black Currants from the Tröeg’s Brewery, and many, many more.


Vermont’s rising-star nanobrewery, Lawson’s Finest Liquids, proves a favorite of the festival with their citra-infused Session in the Rye Ale

But beyond the beer, the festival also featured a full on music stage with live blue and rock bands throught the day and well into the night. After sundown, the brewery sparked up a giant fire pit for festival-goers to gather around, and there was even a midnight screening of Spinal Tap projected on three screen on the side of the barn. Top that off with a rousing fireworks display and you have one jam-packed 24hr festival.


Early attendees made short work of one of the festival’s highlights… rare bottles of Chardonay-barrel aged Stateside Saison from gypsy brewery Stillwater Ales.

But one of the more enjoyable aspects of the festival was in the people. Often times, festivals of this magnitude and with beer of this caliber are either (a) overcrowded or (b) overly chaotic. But Belgium Comes to Cooperstown was neither of these. The beers flowed freely, the festival was not oversold, and the whole crowd was both friendly and inviting… of course, four hours of strong Belgian beer will put just about anyone in the right mood! Overall, however, we walked away from BCTC 2011 with great memories and more than a few new friends. Mark this one down on you calendar as on of the great not-to-be-missed festivals and we’ll see you there in 2012!

Click here to see the full gallery!


A group of revelers celebrate Gnommegang, the collaborative brew between Ommegang and La Chouffe