20 July 2009

Microbrewers 2009 - The Hangover

The 2009 Microbrewers Festival is now officially over! We didn't get to drink as much beer as we normally do since we were all volunteering, but such is life. If you didn't see us working the Firkin tent then that's your fault! We were pouring one of the best selections of Firkins the festival has ever seen!

This is going to be an open thread. Post in the comments and tell us your favorite beer of the festival. Heck tell us your least favorite too! What was improved with this year's festival and what would you like to see next year?

Here's an assortment of VIP Brewer's Dinner photos and a random shot of the festival because I know you love pictures.

Catfish Escabeche with Upland Wheat

Venison Terrine, Berkshire Lomo and Thyme Truffled Bologna with Diamond Kings 2009

Indiana Tomato and Mushroom Pizza with Barley Island Sheet Metal Blond

Brochette of Beef in Mushroom Sauce with Tippecanoe Common and Monon Porter

Decadent Chocolate Dessert with 21-month Oak Aged Anniversary Ale from New Albanian

Chris pouring sweet firkin love


  1. I'll kick this thing off right -

    Favorite Beer: Firestone Walker Union Jack IPA / Diamond Kings

    Least Favorite Beer: Actually I think this year I just tried things I wanted to try - weird.

    Improved over last year: More portalets and beer tents

    Needs improvement: More portalets, visible signage and an up-to-date program.

  2. Favorites: 3F Dark Lord, Founders KBS, Ninkasi Tricerahops, Lafayette Brewing Double Dry Hopped Tippecanoe Common Ale, NABC Beak's Best, Brugge Diamond Kings '09, Sun King Osiris Pale Ale, Hopping Frog Silk Stout poured through coffee beans.

  3. Favorite(s): Founder's barrel aged red rye, KBS, Tricerahops, Port High Tide, hoppin frog silk porter through coffee beans

  4. I didn't attend this year and won't in the future until they move the festival to a new location. 4200 people packed into that small of a venue isn't my idea of a good time. Plus there wasn't that many things I wanted to try.

    Nice to see them getting in some out of state brews like Southampton, Ninkasi, Boulevard, 21st Amendment, Lagunitas and Port Brewing.

  5. Founder's Barrel Aged Red's Rye, 3F Dark Lord, Sun King Dry Hopped Osiris Pale Ale, Boulevard Double Wide IPA, Firestone Walker Union Jack and Double Barrel - missed out on the Diamond Kings, but I'm sure that it was great!

  6. faves - broad ripple brewpub's relegator black ipa... hope to see some of that on tap at the pub. also really enjoyed rock bottom's american dream ipa. wish I'd gotten to lafayette for the dry-hopped common ale!!

    least fave - dogfish's 120min ipa, was just really strange and surprisingly bad to me. felt half bad getting it and not liking it, as I saw they ran out and many missed out, but it was too syrupy and cloying for my liking - prefer their 60 and 90min from experience with those variants.

    suggestions - I'll +1 rodney's thoughts, especially signage on the outside edge of the tents and a map I can accurately get my bearings with. bigger space / take away ~500 tickets would be clinch... was feeling a bit overwhelmed at times (and I'm not especially sensitive to crowds).

  7. Favorite Beer: Founders Barrel-aged Red's Rye (honorable mention to FW Union Jack & Port Hop 15).

    Least Favorite Beer: I don't remember disliking any of the beer, but I did dislike one crazy lady who brought a pint glass instead of using the provided tasting glass - and got pissy when they didn't pour her enough.

    Improved over last year: Hopapalooza Tent! Too bad the line was absurd most of the day.

    Needs improvement: Location, location, location. And, more portalets...and fewer crazy ladies.

  8. Favorite: Black IPA from the firkin tent. Also, I generally don't enjoy fruity lambic-type beers, but the Lost Coast Tangerine and the 21st Amendment Hell and High Watermelon were both really subtle and delicious.

    Least: Hoosier Honey Wheat was just meh for me. Not a fan of wheat beers in general though.

    Unique: The Chili beer from the Monarch table.

    Last year: Wasn't here, but in contrast to Winterfest, there was a bit more room to move.

    Needs improvement: Rodney covered mine - signage and program map accuracy.

    I was quite concerned about the crowds at first, but after about 5:30, the lines thinned out quite a bit. Except for that ridiculous Dark Lord line!

  9. Thanks for the photos of Friday night's cuisine. The VIP was a great event.

    I spent the day loitering around the Cavalier tent and had a blast. No bad beers anywhere in my recollection, although I'm not the promiscuous sampling machine I once was.

    My personal opinion about the venue, and many will disagree with me (not the first time): I love it, but it's like the seating capacity of Fenway Park in the sense that it has fewer seats, and the price to get in is higher.

    Limit to 3,200 and charge a higher ticket price.

  10. I forgot to include the BRBP Relegator Black IPA to my "best of" list. The whole firkin selection, in fact, was stellar. Not a bad beer among them.

  11. I like the Simcoe dry hopped beer in the firkin tent. Cant remember how did it. Also liked the dry hopped pale at Sun King. Hopping Frog Silk Stout poured through coffee beans excellent. Every beer I tried I liked. I love that people in Indy love good beer now, but with those lines I did not get to try nearly as much as I wanted to.

  12. JMAC - I believe that was Schlafly's Dry Hopped Simcoe.

  13. My favorites and least favorites - well, I think I only tried 8 beers since I was running around like a crazy person. I also liked everything I tried - Diamond Kings, Ninkasi's Tricerihops, Schlafly's Dry Export IPA, a couple of the firkins, and Hoppin' Frog's porter through coffee. I am so glad they did that again this year. I thought the beer from Bee Creek was a nice effort, especially their coffee stout.

    I didn't try enough to have a least favorite. So my least favorite was the people I had to yell at for coming back in the festival via the fence.

  14. Favorite: Founder's Barrel Aged Red's Rye

    Worst: Dogfish 120 min IPA (I should've known 20% alc. was too good to be true)

    Can't believe I missed 3F Dark Lord! Was that at their booth? I didn't see it.

    At first I wasn't sure when we would be able to get in as the line wrapped around 1/2 of the block. Luckily they had people handing out wristbands while we waited.

    I thought it was a well run event. Looking forward to next year!

  15. Taking off on what Gina said about the Schlafly beer - it was a brown ale dry hopped with Simcoe hops.

  16. Didn't try a lot due to volunteering, but i liked everything I had. I was there more to experience the crowd and event than I was to drink...strange, I know! At least I went home sober and with a full belly of the BRBP scotch eggs (yum!).

    Favorite thing:
    Having a drunk exiting the festival tell me my soul patch was only good for sopping up vomit, after I informed him we didn't have any extra glasses to give away. Truly something I've never experienced before.

    Least favorite thing: Having to clean up someone's bag of $hit hanging on the fence. Seriously. Next time, leave your poop in the woods or throw it in one of the 40 trash boxes yourself. A$$hat.

  17. It may be a little boring, but my favorite beer of the day was the Sierra Nevada Kellerweis Hefeweizen. It was a nearly spot on example of the style (maybe a little heavy on the herbal/spice notes) and provided a perfect break from all the IPAs I drank that day. I'll have to buy more to make sure my initial impressions hold up.

  18. I was in town for a funeral and had a chance to get out on Saturday, so take my comments with a grain of salt...

    Too big for the venue, lines were way too long, poor planning on the bigger attractions, layout was bad.

    Would have loved to say hi to all of you in the Firkin tent, but couldn't hear myself think over the (not to my taste, I'll be nice here) music. Listened to Ron Smith's self-promotion a bit before getting bored enough to snort the great fermentation hop-plates.

    That said, I got to try Darklord for the first time, loved the Simcoe dry-hopped brown in the firkin tent. I missed the diamond kings as well, which sucks because I loved '08 at GABF. Loved the cajun food there! (Yatz?)

    In spite of all of this, I had fun. A different venue, and frankly more brewers/beer would help given the crowds that are showing up.

  19. I have to agree, Opti-Park can't hold this anymore. I didn't get to try alot of things because of the lines. I wasn't waiting around til 6 pm for Darklord tho.
    The Diesel Stout from Powerhouse Brewing was a nice surprise.
    The Sun King beers were great except for the Alt.
    Turoni's dark lager was excellent, the helles not so much.
    Thankfully I never had to go to the Port-O-Lets so I can't comment.
    I think if I ever went back it would be as a volunteer of some sort. In some respects it was too many people and in other respects it was a tad boring.