Sunday, April 7, 2013

Second Annual Big Texas Beer Fest (burp) was a Frothy Success

You know how they say opposites attract? Yeah, well my husband and I are perfect example of that. We've been together 17 years and I couldn't love him more, but we are completely different people. I love fashion and he thinks wearing underwear with holes in it is acceptable. I love MGM musicals where the main characters tap dance off into the sunset and he likes gritty dramas.  I love reality TV and he likes ESPN. You get the picture.

Needless to say, he is happy to stay behind while I flit all over the city attending all of the various events, galas, luncheons, festivals and exhibits you read about here. When a press release for the Big Texas Beer Festival came across my in-box, I thought to myself, "A-HA! Now HERE'S an event my man will like."  On Saturday, we headed over to Fair Park to attend the 2nd annual Big Texas Beer Fest. And he didn't like it... he LOVED it.  And surprisingly, so did I!

Chad and Nellie Montgomery are the sole driving force behind planning the Big Texas Beer Fest. The pair visited Denver, CO. in September 2010 to attend the Great American Beer Festival and came back inspired to re-create this event in Dallas.  Their website quotes the pair as saying, "We’re not entrepreneurs by design... We’re just two people who love great beer, small businesses, supporting local charities, and festivals."  Kudos to these two beer lovers who, in their second year, produced a sell-out festival with over 100 craft breweries who served up over 400 beers, ciders and ales. I also love that they have social conscience and donated a portion of proceeds to the North Texas Food Bank.

Now, I am not a beer drinker. In fact, I hate the stuff. But, my husband's eyes lit up like a kid in a candy store when we walked in. He was thrilled to find his favorite craft beer, "Blood and Honey" from Revolver Brewery on site. Another favorite for my husband was 512 Brewery out of San Antonio.

I was thrilled to discover a couple of delicious hard ciders that I actually enjoyed: Angry Orchard Hard Cider's "Elderflower" and Ace Premium Hard Cider's "Perry".

I was thoroughly amused by the folks I saw walking around with pretzel necklaces (see photo above). What an ingenious idea! You need snackage with all that beer drinking and this was a fun, hands-free snack that doubled as a cool accessory.  I also spotted these two sassy gents (left) who had made festive chapeaus out of beer cartons, proving that fashion can be found anywhere if you look hard enough for it.

The festival was held at Fair Park with the main event held inside the Automobile Building.  Food tucks and a live music stage was right outside, providing snacks and a little atmosphere.  VIP tickets were $60 and general admission was $35.  Personally, I feel the VIP ticket is well worth the increased price because it gives you early entrance to the festival (you can drink a lot of beer with that extra hour) and an invite to a cool after-party to hang with the brewers and other beer lovers.  Texas state law doesn't allow for “unlimited tastings,” so guests got a sample card good for 12 two-ounce pours, with additional card purchases priced at only $2.

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