In celebration of all things microbrewed, New York’s hoppiest bars showcased an entire ten-day event to taste, pair and indulge in the best craft beer from around the country and across the pond. I was able to only attend events Wednesday through yesterday but nevertheless, your correspondent got the feel of what the event was hoping to accomplish.
First (obviously), was BEER. Sweet, delicious craft brewed elixir. Depending on the spot and the night every brewery I knew and/or heard of was on display (actually, that’s a tad exaggerated but there were many and many more breweries filling pints all around town). The basic way the week worked was events would be announced (my source was through BrewYork) at bars in all different parts of the City, Uptown, Mid-Town, West Village, Long Island City, Park Slope and so on. Each establishment would be offering a special beer(s) for the night only and usually there would be some happy hour aspect or a food pairing.
This was the second aspect I particularly enjoyed, the discovery of watering holes all around town. Not that I have fallen into routine or only frequent the same places, it is more that the amount of quality libation joints in this city can be and frankly, is overwhelming. Beer Week solved this problem. There were handful of pubs that are of the style I enjoy (dimly lit, but not dark, good tunes at a reasonable volume, laid back and engaged crowd and, of course, top notch ales).
The final quality was something usually found in a microbrew festival, the people. I’ve been a fan of this movement for a number of years now and one reason I keep attending events like these is because the others that show up (beyond the friends that come along). Usually bearded, often engaging and always hopped on hops, these gentlemen (and a lot of ladies (sans beards)) are the purveyors of the good times. That’s what is special about craft beer: it brings quality people together with a quality product. That’s always a recipe for a good time.