Beer Bloggers Conference – Day One

Yesterday was the first day of the 2013 Beer Bloggers Conference. I am very excited to be able to attend this event at the Boston Park Plaza Hotel in, of course, Boston, MA. I had such a busy beer experience happening on the first day that I wasn’t able to post this at the end of the day like I wanted to. So, I figured the next best thing would be a post first thing in the morning before I get into even more beer fun.

The Beer Bloggers Conference started in 2010 and has been successful enough to continue annually. It happens at a different city every year and involves some great beer experiences that us bloggers can write about. This is the first year that I’ve been able to attend.

I arrived in Boston just before noon and made my way to the hotel. The conference wasn’t going to start until 2:30pm, so I thought it would be a good time to have lunch. Funnily enough, there was a Rock Bottom Brewery just a quick walk away. While I was there, I enjoyed a couple brews with my food and chilled until it was time to head back to the hotel.

I went to pick up my conference name badge and was happy to receive this awesome gift from Hydro Flask:

It’s a stainless steel, powder coated, double walled, vacuum insulated growler. Cool, right?

After picking up my badge and growler, I walked over to the trade show that was kicking off the event and sampled some brews. One that definitely stood out was Ghost Face Killah, a chile beer made with Anaheim, Fresno, Jalapeno, Serrano, Habanero, and Bhut Jolokia (aka Ghost chile). This was probably the spiciest beer I have had yet, but not much hotter than the chipotle pepper Black Marlin Porter I had at Ballast Point a few months ago. I sampled some other delicious beers (which helped cool my palate) and then hopped on the bus outside the hotel.

The bus took us to the original brewery of Boston Beer Company for a couple keynote speakers, dinner, and more tasty beer. Jim Koch, founder of the brewery, was one of the speakers and gave a fun and relaxed speech that I may eventually have access to on video and will post if things work out. After the speech I was fortunate enough to go into the barrel room and sample some 2012 Samuel Adams Utopias with Jim:

After the Utopias tasting, I thoroughly enjoyed the food, beer, and conversations with my fellow beer bloggers. This was a great evening. But wait, we’re not done yet! We loaded up the bus and headed to Stoddard’s Fine Food and Ale, where some pirates were ready to show us a good time.

Heavy Seas Brewing put on a Pyrates, Pints, and Poets party for us at Stoddard’s. There were many beers to sample and I did my best, but wasn’t able to hit every one. Here’s what I did try: Red Sky at Night Saison, Small Craft Uber Pils, Davey Jones’ Lager, Loose CANnon IPA, Red Sky with lavender on cask, Siren Noire Imperial Chocolate Stout, and Peg Leg Imperial Stout aged in Bourbon Barrels. I can honestly say that I really enjoyed every single one of those beers. I wonder if they’ll ever make it to Minnesota? Fun little tidbit for you: apparently, Heavy Seas is the largest producer of cask ale in the United States. It definitely showed at the party, as there were a good number of casks present.

Well, I’d say it was a great first day! Uh-oh, it’s getting close to starting time for day two, so I better get going. Keep watching the blog to see what adventures I have today!

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