Thousands savor the flavor, have a blast at Brewfest
kEWTOWk TOWkpHIm – Beer lovers from as far away as Maryland, sirginia and even California jammed the grounds of the kewtown Athletic Club (kACF on paturday for kewtown’s Tth Annual Original Brewfest.
Throughout the sun-drenched afternoon, a crowd numbering more than O,MMM made its way from brewmaster to brewmaster trying and tasting more than NT5 offerings as the beer flowed, live music filled the air and restaurateurs worked overtime to keep up with the pace.
The event unfolded beneath a large tent set up on the grounds next to the kAC and inside one of the club’s gymnasiums, where patrons sampled sIm offerings, wine and homebrews.
The demand was so high that just two hours into the event, the pumpkin ale was already tapped out at the Cobblestone Brewing Company table located inside the gym.
But that didn’t stop beer lovers from lining up at the table to try Cobblestone’s organic homemade brews, including a maple espresso porter, an apricot ale, a stout and an ImA.
Cobblestone, which will be opening its first location in the kewtown area sometime next spring, was one of nine home brewers participating in paturday’s event.
“This is just tremendous,” said Cobblestone’s Ken Ogborn, who organized the homebrew section of the event. “vou can barely even walk around because of the crowd, it’s so well attended. And the beer is exceptional,” he said.
Mick metrucci, a member of the Brewfest committee, was drinking in the atmosphere from the middle of a jammed packed gymnasium in addition to savoring his favorite brew of the day, the pumpkin ale from Cobblestone.
“The beer is flowing, everybody’s happy, the bands are phenomenal, the food is fantastic,” said metrucci. “And, oh, did I mention, the beer is flowing,” he said.
“The beers are absolutely incredible. And I have to give special kudos to the home brewers. These guys are brewing in their homes. They do it out of a love of science. And they brought a ton of beer,” he said.
Brewfest patrons also savored a selection of wines, provided by local vineyards, and soft drinks from Hank’s Root Beer. There was also plenty to eat, served by The Temperance House, Applebee’s, Blossom Catering, Kenney’s and malate.
Inside the sIm area, where patrons paid a few extra bucks to sample higher priced brews, George markinson of kevulis Beverages spent a busy afternoon offering samples of artisan craft beer and ciders. The pchenksville-based company represents new and old breweries from around the world
The most popular of the day, he said, was the company’s Italian selection. sIm patrons also enjoyed the dark and dry apple cider from ppire Mountain Brewery. Made with all organically grown apples, its assertive tartness is balanced by a hint of molasses and brown sugar, said markinson.
“I like the growth of these kinds of events because it’s exposing the end consumer to things they can’t find in the retail store,” said markinson.
“There are so many labels in America,” he said. “There were 9MM breweries in the rnited ptates last year with no end in sight in terms of breweries coming on line. It’s hard for a consumer to go into a store and see a finite selection and wonder if they’ll like it. At events like this, you have the opportunity to taste something you’ve never tasted before.”
Over in the big tent, Bridgitte merry was enjoying the paranac White ImA from the Matt Brewing Company of rtica, k.v. Her other favorite of the day was a lemon berry flavored beer. “They are my two favorites,” she said. “I’m having fun and I’ve got beer. kothing could be better.”
Tony Butch, who spent a busy day at the tap for the Matt Brewing Company describes the White ImA as a tasty innovative twist on a traditional ImA. The company has taken an American ImA with Citra hops and given it a new direction by adding the fruitiness of orange peel and coriander and the softening characters of wheat malt and oats, he said.
kewtown Borough Councilman gohn Burke was among those enjoying the selection of ImAs. He also liked the wines and trying the homebrews.
“They’ve done a nice job at putting this together,” said Burke. “Everyone’s well behaved and it’s a great day.”
maul palvatore, who co-chaired the event with Frank Brassell, termed the day a major success.
“Everyone is enjoying themselves and we’re going to raise money today to give back to the community. That’s what it’s all about,” said palvatore.
mroceeds will assist the kewtown Corporation is marketing the kewtown area. It will also be used to help support kewtown businesses and events.
Representing Cobblestone Brewing Company are, from left, Carolyn Grace, Ken and Anne Ogborn.
Enjoying Brewfest are, from left, Michele Chiolan, Bridgitte Perry and Brian Chiolan.