Thursday, June 13, 2013

The News on Brews n’ Blues

Oshkosh’s big, summer beer bash is coming up quick. The 18th annual Brews n’ Blues Festival is next Saturday, June 22 at the Leach Amphitheater. The folks from the Oshkosh Jaycees who throw this party have just posted a lineup of some of the beers that’ll be pouring. You can check that out HERE. A few that are on my short list are Southern Tier's Plum Noir, a plum infused Porter; Ommegang’s Fleur De Houblon, A Belgian Pale Ale that’s been getting great reviews; and New Holland’s mighty Dragon's Milk, a barrel-aged beast of an Imperial Stout that tastes better every time I try it. As you can see from the list, they’re also bringing in quite a few more Ciders this year. If you haven’t had the opportunity to discover how enjoyable a well-made Cider can be, this would be the time to dip in.

And that’s all very nice, but I’ve intentionally buried the lead. Let me clue you in on where the real action is going to be: the Society of Oshkosh Brewers tent. This year, the SOBs are bringing in a banquet of unique brews, meads and wines. Not to take anything away from the pro-brewers at the fest, but there’s just no way they can match the variety that’ll be flowing at the SOB table. The club will have at least 16 different homebrews pouring throughout the afternoon and evening, along with another half-dozen or so meads and wines. This is the kind of stuff, you just can’t buy.

One more thing; there’s going to be a couple of special brews at the SOB tent that haven’t been poured side-by-side in Oshkosh in more than 40 years. I’ve brewed a clone of Chief Oshkosh Beer and Jody Cleveland has brewed a clone of Peoples Beer. Both brews are based upon recipes of the original beers that were made in Oshkosh until the early 1970s. This is a rare chance to get a taste of our lost, local favorites.

Tickets for Brews n’ Blues are available at Oblios, O’Marro’s and at Festival Foods in Oshkosh, Fond du Lac and Appleton. They can also be purchased online HERE. Tickets are $35 in advance or $45 at the door. There’s also a limited VIP ticket available for $50 that includes food and other good stuff at the O’Marro’s tent. The fest runs from 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. See you there!

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