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A Press Democrat Blog

Beer Country

A digest about that other famous beverage

Announcing the first NorCal Beer Geeks Festival

The NorCal Beer Geeks group has grown to nearly 600 members. In the past the group would select a local brewery, taproom or restaurant and partake in a tasting. Past events have featured food and beer pairings, blind tastings and bottle shares. With nine events in the books, the NorCal Beer Geeks will be celebrating the tenth gathering with the first ever NorCal Beer Geeks Beer Festival presented by Palooza Gastropub. The event will take place on Saturday, November 22 from… Read More »

Amateur brewer and Bear Republic bring home top honors from Great American Beer Festival

Occidental home brewer Michael Kelly and local beer brewer Bear Republic won top honors this weekend at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver, Colo., the world’s largest commercial beer competition. Kelly and the Cloverdale-based brewer won a gold medal in the festival’s Pro-Am competition, which pairs amateur brewers with professional brewers. For the competition, Bear Republic chose earlier this year Kelly’s Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Scottish 80 Shilling, a Scottish style ale that Kelly described as a “refreshing diversion from… Read More »

Lagunitas to go ‘couch tripping’

Lagunitas is going ‘couch tripping’ for the next few weeks. The couch tripping tour will consist of several parties throughout the country with the final destination being New Orleans. The tour will benefit O+, a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing community well-being by connecting musicians, artists and health providers in week long celebrations. A special fusion ale was made specifically for this tour. O+, musicians, entertainment by the Beer Circus and of course some of the well-loved couches from the… Read More »

Bear Republic looks ahead to Great American Beer Festival

For those who can’t make the trek to Denver for the Great American Beer Festival next month, Bear Republic Brewing Co. offered up a preview Sunday of some of brews it hopes to be pouring at the country’s largest beer festival. The Cloverdale-based company held its 6th Annual Cellar Party in a space right next to its Healdsburg brewpub. It gave local fans of the brewer, most known for its popular Racer 5 India Pale Ale (IPA), a chance to… Read More »

Check out the Petaluma River Craft Beer Festival

The Petaluma River Craft Beer Festival will take place this upcoming Saturday, September 13 from 1pm to 5pm. Twenty local breweries will be pouring beer at the festival that takes place in downtown Petaluma, right by the river. Food bites and live music will be offered as well. The price of admission is $40. That will get you into the festival, a souvenir beer glass, and ten tickets that may be used for beer and/or food tastings. Designated drivers get in… Read More »

Heady Topper is coming to Santa Rosa

The owner of The Alchemist Brewery, John Kimmich, paid Sonoma County a visit this week. The casual beer drinker may not be familiar with John or his brewery, but the biggest of craft beer enthusiasts get bright eyed and bushy tailed at the mention of their beers. The Alchemist, best known for making Heady Topper, is located 3,000 miles away in Waterbury, Vermont. The beer made there usually does not leave a 60 mile radius from where it’s made unless… Read More »

Russian River beer revival great time for all

The Russian River Beer Revival and BBQ Cookoff unofficial tag line is “if you can’t have fun at this one…you can’t have fun.” Such a bold statement along with a lot of positive feedback from attendees of previous years had my expectations at an all-time high. The event did not disappoint. It’s easy to see why the 12th annual event that took place this past Saturday, August 16, sold out within a matter of minutes. Thirty BBQ teams set up their stations among… Read More »

Bear Republic’s 6th Annual Cellar Party on tap

Bear Republic will be hosting its 6th Annual Cellar Party on Sunday, September 14 from 2pm to 5pm. The party will take place in the courtyard/barrel room located at 345 Healdsburg Ave. in the town of Healdsburg. This will be an opportunity to get to meet the brew team and sample the beers that Bear Republic will be submitting to this year’s Great American Beer Festival. The brewery also promises to be dusting off some rarities from the cellar that they plan… Read More »

Meet, join the Sonoma Beerocrats

The popularity of craft beer seems to be at an all-time high. Not everyone is content to simply sit on the sidelines and taste the delicious beer that is being made by others. A growing number of people are choosing to roll up their sleeves and home brew their own beer. The Sonoma Beerocrats is an American Home-brewers Association sanctioned home brewing club based in Sonoma County. They welcome new members to show up to one of their monthly meetings… Read More »

Ready, Set, Growl Beer Festival

The Ready, Set, Growl Beer Festival presented by Whole Foods Tap Room will take place in Juilliard Park in Santa Rosa on Sunday, August 24 between 11am and 3pm. The beer festival will be in conjunction with the Santa Rosa Marathon. Last year the marathon had 4,000 participants and another few thousand spectators. The beer garden near the finish line was a big hit. So much so that it encouraged Orhan Sarabi, race director, to team up with longtime Russian River Beer… Read More »

Russian River Beer Revival tickets on sale

The 2014 Russian River Beer Revival tickets will officially go on sale today Friday, June 13 at 1pm. You may purchase tickets online at http://www.stumptown.com/revival/ or at Stumptown brewery. This will be the 12th annual festival being held at Stumptown Brewery which is located at 15045 River Rd. in Guerneville. The festival will take place on Saturday, August 16 with the beer tasting going from 1 to 5pm. There will be thirty breweries and thirty BBQ teams offering tastings to go with… Read More »

The best (Lagunitas) Beer Circus yet

I must say that I have never been disappointed when attending a Lagunitas beer event. Once again they topped themselves with, in my opinion, the best Beer Circus yet. The beer was as good as expected. Besides special limited release beers by Lagunitas like a pomegranate pale, you had quite the list of breweries to choose from. The entertainment was over the top. Some of the acts I have seen at the Beer Circus in previous years but I still… Read More »

Two great weekend beer events on tap

This upcoming weekend will be quite eventful for beer lovers holding the two hottest tickets in the county. First, Beerfest will take place at the Wells Fargo Center in Santa Rosa on Saturday, June 7. Sonoma County food purveyors will join 60+ breweries coming together to raise money for Face to Face Sonoma County Aids Network. Unlimited beer, beverages and food tastings with a souvenir glass are included in the price of admission. Tickets may still be purchased by clicking… Read More »

23rd Annual Beerfest, benefit for Face to Face

The 23rd Annual Beerfest is coming up on June 7. The Wells Fargo Center for the Arts in Santa Rosa will be the venue and the event hours are from 1:00pm to 5:00pm. Sonoma County food purveyors will join 60+ breweries coming together to raise money for a great cause. 100 % of the proceeds will be donated to Face to Face Sonoma County AIDS Network. For $45 ($50 at the door) you can help raise money while enjoying unlimited… Read More »

18th Annual Boonville Beer Festival coming up

The 18th Annual Boonville Beer Festival will take place at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds located at 14400 Highway 128 in Boonville, on Saturday May 3rd. The taps will be open from 1pm until 5pm. Gates open at 12:45 for those of you anxious to get in. Save fifteen dollars by purchasing your ticket in advance or pay $55 at the door on the day of the event. Keep in mind that it’s cash only at the door. If you are… Read More »