Only four months removed from last year's bacchanalia of hops and malt, the 15th-annual New Times "Original" Beerfest still drew a considerable crowd to its new venue, the Huizenga Plaza on 32 E. Las Olas Blvd. Much to our chagrin, New Times is not turning this sudsy affair into a quarterly celebration. Turns out, this alt weekly simply wanted to shift Beerfest back to the springtime bash it was intended to be originally.
We arrived two hours into the party. It was stocked with more than 100 local and international beers to savor. Armed with a five-ounce miniature mug, we had a hearty mission at hand; sample as many craft beer selections as humanly possible and ascertain a healthy buzz, all in a little over two hours. Again, not a simple task when you have only a Smurf-sized beer mug (were the mugs stolen from a Smurf's keg party?) to swish your brews around in.
Our first stop was the American Social tent, which was pouring Sam Adams' Alpine Springs seasonal lager. This citrusy and smooth lager was a refreshing way to start our quest.
While we were making our way to Tap 42's tent, our attention was distracted by the funky brass lines being dished out by legendary New Orleans ensemble Dirty Dozen Brass Band. We swerved our route directly toward the Revolution Live stage.
After that song was completed, Davis went up to the microphone and stated, "We gather for a good cause, to drink a lot of beer." With that mission statement, we focused back on our task at hand: savor and sip the most we could drink.
We wangled our way through a horde of what we will politely call Himmarshee regulars, toward Tap 42 to cash in on their promise. And indeed, they did pour us a kind amount of Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat. It was a cloudy, extremely fruity beer that would have done us much better served in a 16-ounce glass instead. We visited the Brooklyn Brewery tent -- and yes, this beer is made in Brooklyn -- had some easy-drinking lager there, Magic Hat, Żywiec Brewery and Sol next.
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