Beer lovers from near and far came to convene in Atlanta for the annual Atlanta Summer Beer Festival that was held in the O4W park on June 17th. Over 200 beers & 30 wines were on display for our drinking pleasure, & no one left unsatisfied. The first half of the day I poured beer for Virginia-based brewery Devil’s Backbone Brewing Company & Georgia-based brewery Omaha Brewing Co. Brews. The former brewing company had their Vienna Lager (5.0% ABV) & Eight Point IPA (7.3% ABV) featured, while the latter chose their Nada-Banana American Weiss Beer (5.3% ABV) & Insta-Gator American Syle Kolsch (4.9% ABV).
I’m sure my partner & I’s sunny dispositions is what eventually brought the crowds to our tent (hehe)….. the fact that we rinsed people’s cups out between tastes was the consolation prize for the rain. It’s the little things! The Nada-Banana & Insta-Gator were huge hits with people that wanted differently flavored, lighter beers, so as to not overexert themselves too early … or to ween themselves off of all of those IPAs & other high gravity beers that others dove head first into sampling. The true IPA & lager lovers didn’t feel out of place either with their options from DB. I saw quite a few familiar faces that were obsessed with the options we were continually slinging. Everyone that visited reverberated the same enthusiasm and energy that we extended, so it was a great time for all that came out. Ok, now on to what you’ve been waiting for, what I thought of the beers I tried.
I’m a huge stout & porter drinker, and Ironmonger Brewing Company’s Forged Porter (7.4% ABV) has found itself as a front runner as one of my faves. It’s an award-winning, English-inspired beer that tastes like smooth dark chocolate. Surprisingly, the coffee dominant beer is medium bodied with no bitter after taste. It was a little dry, but not overly dry to where you feel like you need to take a sip of water afterwards. It was very easy drinking for me on a humid Georgia day. I also tried their Britesmith Hefeweizen (5.2% ABV) that was maltier than expected., but not in a bad way. It reminded me more of a lager.
Next up, Arches Brewing with their Southern Bel’ (6.8% ABV). It’s a Belgian Blonde ale with a traditional malt flavor. It was delicious, although I have yet to try a beer from this brewery that I haven’t liked. The clove, carmel flavor was smooth & had a clean, slightly dry finish. (I like most of my drinks dry if you haven’t noticed). I can’t enjoy hoppy beers unless they are ice-cold, but the hops on this beer were subtle enough to gain a position as a beer that I would return to in the future.
Overall, I had an amazing time at the Atlanta Beer Festival. My Murder Kroger (1984-2016) shirt was a huge icebreaker & I got a chance to educate some ATLiens on how the store gained its name. What techniques do you use to engage with others? Comment below & share your explorations with #ExploreAdventurously on IG & Twitter
P.S. If you want to see what beers I explore, follow me on the Untappd app at bworthy1!