The Great Vegas Festival of Beer is back again this year at Tivoli Village on April 21st!
This was one of the better Las Vegas beer fests I attended last year. A lot of great beers from some great breweries.
The things I didn’t like about last year was the length of time it took to get into the festival, and how small and crowded the festival area was. It looks like Motley Brews learned from last year by adding an express lane for online ticket holders and three times more space than last year! Also exciting are some of the breweries that will be present this year that are new to the festival: Brewery Ommegang, Ballast Point, Uinta, and Green Flash, to name a few. Expect to see the local breweries on hand as well: Tenaya Creek, Joseph James, Chicago Brewing Company, and Big Dog’s Brewing Company.
More details, and pictures, can be found at Motley Brew’s website.
We rolled into San Diego at roughly 5:30 PM and checked into our hotel. We were both pretty beat from the day’s events, but we didn’t want to waste time. I checked my Twitter feed and noticed that Ryan from Aces and Ales had recommended a pub called Churchill’s. I was amazed to see it was only about a mile from the hotel!
We decided to take a walk and embark on our first stop for fine ales.
Aside from the outside sign, sporting the likeness of the man himself, the first thing I noticed was the old English telephone booth standing next to the entry way. As we walked in, we were greeted by beer signs aplenty. After being seated, we got our menu’s, including the extensive list of draft beer, which is, well, why you’re probably reading this in the first place. Prices range from $3-$10 per glass, or you can get a 4oz. taster for a fraction of the cost.
Evil Twin Soft X-mas with a Cherry on Top – Vanilla Imperial Stout w/ Cherries
–Sadly, this beer was dominated by the sour cherry flavor, with only a minimal tasting of vanilla. As the beer warmed, the coffee flavors began to sneak out, but overall it was disappointing.
Karl Strauss Cask Conditioned Padre Porte
–This was a bit underwhelming. It had a standard porter flavor, a bit spicy, but the light body made it feel a little watered down.
Russian River Blind Pig IPA
-My wife exclaimed “This tastes just like it smells…DELICIOUS!” …and I’d have to agree! The grapefruit and pine notes come through in a big way, both in smell and in flavor, with a nice bitter finish. This was my first experience with Russian RIver, and I cannot wait to get my hands on more of their brews! Highly recommended!
Karl Strauss Flan-Diddly-Anders Red
-On first smell you get a nice nose full of maple and sweet cherries. The flavor has a nice acidic sourness to it which give way to a bit of sweetness. Not the best sour beer that I’ve had, but quite pleasant.
Monkey Paw Santa’s Pet Monkey – Chocolate Vanilla Imperial Porter
-The chocolate and vanilla flavors hit you right away with the coffee porter smell coming in shortly after. The chocolate is by far the dominant flavor, as the vanilla seems to rarely come through. All in all, a decent porter, but nothing to go out of your way for.
Coronado Stoopid Stout
-The coffee notes hit you right away, with a nice dose of chocolate, and a hint of grapefruit. This stout is huge with a big coffee flavor, big alcohol, and a nice, unexpected hop overtone. One fantastic stout!
Green Flash Fizzy Yellow Pilsner
-I’m not a fan of pilsners, however, alongside Tenaya Creek’s, this may be the only pilsner I’ve enjoyed. It has great notes of lemon zest, malt, and even banana. A fine, refreshing beer!
Karl Strauss Two Tortugas – Belgian Quad
-My wife and I both loves this one! Smells and tastes like brown sugar and molasses, with a nice, rum-like finish. Very complex and tasty!
Evil Twin X-mas in a NYC Hotel Room
-Bitter chocolate, smoky coffee, and toffee were the prevalent flavors here. All shined through great, and each drink felt as if I was unveiling a new layer of flavors. Quite a bold stout!
Not to be outdone, the food here was also great! My wife raved about the clam chowder and scotch eggs, while I feasted upon an “Epic” grilled cheese sandwich. If you are in San Diego, this pub is a “must go,” and I’m sure it will be the first place I go on any future trips! Great food, phenomenal beer selection, and top notch service…5 stars all around!
Coming soon: Stone Brewery day 1