Thursday, October 10, 2013

Great American Beer Fest Begins Tonight

It's become more and more apparent to me that I need at least 12 hours of sleep to prepare for a trip- even something as simple as a one-hour flight to Denver. Even if I do drink enough to actually fall asleep on the eve of a trip, I am so amped to leave that I have a restless sleep and end up stumbling around the airport shops, actually contemplating buying a pair of Beats from Hudson News.
This jaunt to Denver is to cover the Great American Beer Festival for the 5th year, and from the look of downtown Denver on Wednesday, this will be the biggest group of beer geeks in one city in like, ever. To give a perspective: there were almost as many brewery people walking on the 16th St. Mall as there were people asking for money. And the crowd at Falling Rock Tap House was already four deep for beer at the bar at 4 pm, though it did thin out around 7. I didn't stay much longer, I have to admit. It was still the night before the largest gathering of beers under one roof, and I plan to try a respectable amount when the beers pour at 5:30 this evening. The GABF phone app that lets you make a "must try" list of breweries and check off and rate beers will have everyone walking around looking at their phones (even more than usual) and adding beers tried to the database. I'll be one of those fools, I hate to say. I used to carry a little notebook to write down all the beers I tasted, but in the dark ages of 2009 all I could do on my Nokia was play a bowling game, so the notebook was a necessity.
With 3,100 beers from 624 breweries at the GABF this year, I'm not ashamed to say I was in bed by 10 last night to get myself in tip-top sampling shape. Brought a 12-pack of coconut water from Costco, have my milk thistle and ibuprofen handy...I'm ready to do this. Tomorrow may be a different story.

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