Coming together over craft beer.
Truth be told, I am not much of a wine drinker. I have tried over the years, and there are certainly meals and occasions when wine is the right choice, but I have never developed an affinity for it like I have for its carbonated companion. So naturally, when my wife and I had the opportunity to go to a wine and food tasting fundraiser, I immediately wanted to know: “Where’s the beer?”
The Moorestown Visiting Nurses Association was hosting a wonderful fundraiser for a great cause. I knew there was going to be some beer vendors mixed in with the vino, so I was on the look out from the beginning. After a few minutes of surveying the land, we stopped at a cocktail table with some snacks to step out of the crowd for a second. Another man with a glass of wine and an all beef slider stepped in to the table as well. After some light conversation, he revealed that he was the owner of the liquor company that was presenting the event with MVNA. He talked about all his many wine tables and the 25 volunteers he needed to man them all. When beer came up, he had this (paraphrased) to say, “Well, we were supposed to have two beer tables, one in this corner and one in that corner, but these two beer geeks wanted to push their tables together.” If you love beer, HOW DO YOU NOT LOVE THIS!
Here is why that’s awesome:
Ok, so there was more to the night, but again I will skip to the beer. It was a very random selection for sure. Both servers were clearly Belgian lovers. They had both been there several times, had a lot to say on the subject, and had each chosen a signature Belgian as their lead pour if someone didn’t know what they wanted. When I went to an American IPA as my first try, I thought the one gent was going to ask me to leave! One server was pouring Delerium Tremens.
FUN FACT: I did not know this untill tonight, but Delerium Tremens is the only beer to win best beer in Europe two years in a row.
I did leave the table and come back a few times. At one point I listened to a great conversation where one guest tried a Belgian called Lucifer and comment to the server, “Hmm… kinda like a Blue Moon, because that’s Belgian too, right?”. I thought the server handled his response well. “Sure, but you have to remember that Lucifer is not trying to be Blue Moon, Blue Moon is trying to be Lucifer”.
I had a brief conversation about local breweries, and the one that was highlight to me was Kane Brewing in Ocean, New Jersey. I am a big fan, and supporter of New Jersey and Philly area breweries, so it was great to hear him point out this rising star. I have seen there beer on tap around here a lot lately, and I will now make it a point to try some! He also mentioned Boxcar Brewing.
COOL NOTE: Boxcar Brewing’s Mange Ginger IPA is going to be highlighted at the VIP tent during the US Open. Cool!
So it was a good night. Lots of food and beer, and some wine, and many great conversations. Mostly it was a nice night out with my wife. Next time you get invited to a wine tasting, I hope you too run into a couple of beer geeks willing to tell you their stories. Cheers!
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