Note: Finalizing blogs on “Places on the Growler List.”
However, this is also a substitution … if you’ve read through my blog, you will see that some of the entries I’ve modified slightly. There are two types of modifications–first, if the venue is closed, I substitute (what I feel) is an appropriate replacement. The other is a “suitable sub.” For instance, I’m not a fan of SEC football, so I substituted another “experience” entry. I did that for about 5 entries (I think). This entry, #63 for me, is a substitute for a defunct festival: Bruxellensis. I’m sad about that because the festival looked very interesting. My replacement, though, is a fantastic option (I believe).
The Big Beers, Belgians, and Barleywines Festival (formerly in Vail, CO but now in Breckenridge, CO is incredible. If you go to just more than the festival — you can spend the whole weekend celebrating beer at this event — all the better. Sign up for seminars, sessions, cigar tastings, etc, etc.
This event entered its 16th year in 2017 and you can really appreciate the maturity. There are scheduled activities starting even earlier in the week and continuing through Sunday. The basic format is — beer dinners/tastings/seminars/competitions early (Monday through Friday) and then the big Festival on Saturday. And this is about Big Beers! How about a 1994 Triple Bock from Boston Brewery? The Utopias at 28%?
Many of the craft industries long-time members really go all out in support of this (Dogfish Head, Avery, and the Lost Abbey to name a few (Oh, and Boston Brewery? see above)).
However, you also get the newer entrants in the industry as well — all focused on big beers or Belgians … and not just big, but great beers. If you look at the link above and walk through some of the activities, i’m sure you’ll agree … worthy of a place on the list and as a replacement for Bruxellensis.
Finally, this is also on Beermentor’s 100 Places list … now there are two officially, this Festival and Russian River Brewing. I will be adding my list soon … really. 🙂