Sunday afternoon on Maine’s Higgins Beach, while I nursed both a hangover and my second Heady Topper of the day, a friend said, “I’m not exactly sure because I’ve never had one, but this might have been the perfect weekend.”
It was, friends. It was.
And in order to commemorate our time in Portland, ME, I asked my friends Jon, Jessica, Roger, Heather, Lindsay, Erica, and Brett to each write a little piece about their experience. 8 people. 8 posts. 1 amazing weekend. Enjoy.
“Don’t let my social media outburst fool you (https://www.facebook.com/brettwbauerII/posts/10100696510968341
) the Festival weekend was epic! This was just my reaction to having to stand by and watch as Sean Hill of Hill Farmstead Brewery poured samples of his blend of his saison and Cantillion geuze with none other than Jean van Roy of Cantillon to fellow brewers. Volunteers sat by, continuing to pour to fest goers and couldn’t try a drop of this nectar fits for gods because of (stupid stupid stupid)Maine laws forbidding “servers” from responsibly sampling (As most do in EVERY OTHER FEST I’VE EVER WORKED AT). Soon after posting this, I told Martha Paquette of Pretty Things Beer and Ale Project of this situation and that I wanted to cry, to which she sympathized with her always pleasant smile and agreed she would have cried too… except I’m pretty sure she did get to try it. (sigh)
Granted I won’t be volunteering unless organizers can think of a much better way to compensate volunteers for their service, but this situation illustrated what made The Festival great. The interaction with the brewers themselves made this a unique experience. We see this at the American Craft Beer Fest but this is featuring so prominent Belgian brewers. The only other way to get this kind of interaction is to pay thousands for a flight and hotels to go to Belgium yourself.
This was one of the funnier stories from my perspective out of such an eventful and fun weekend both on and off the craft beer scene (to which I hope to god one of my friends making these entries can describe Bubba Sulkies in all its dive glory). Depending on where The Fest will be next year, I’m not entirely opposed to an road trip of even epic-er proportions… just keep that in mind, kids. Cheers!”
Thanks for the post, Brett!