Sunday, May 20, 2012

My American Craft Beer Week

Beer is Good.  Craft beer with friends is even better.  My lack of attendance at all but 1 american craft beer week events was made up for by the shenanigans that took place at Macnivens on Thursday night for the Sun King tap takeover.  I started off American Craft Beer Week strongly with one of my all time favorite double IPA's, Pliny the Elder.  Followed that gem up with Founders Curmudgeon Old Ale, Odell IPA, Finch's Threadless IPA, and Three Floyds Zombie Dust.  Pics below:

Then came Thursday.  My buddy matt and I set out on a beer drinking adventure like none other.  It was a hot day, perfect for seeking out the thirst quenching goodness of Sun King's hand crafted gems.  We started the day by heading down to South of Chicago Pizza and Beef for scrumptious Italian Beef sandwiches.  If you haven't made it to this restaurant, I suggest you do so right now.  When we arrived, they were we walked across the street to the Dugout to enjoy a beer while we waited 20 minutes for glorious beef.
Matt enjoying his Sun King Cream Ale at the Dugout

My Osiris

Osiris and Me
 One beer down and over to enjoy what is one of the best Italian Beef sandwiches in Indy
We were lucky to find a was jam packed

Bears decor

Matt slamming his beef...and enjoying an Osiris
Matt couldn't quite finish his sandwich in the restaurant.  We sat and chatted for a few minutes before walking back to the car.  On our way, Matt decided he wanted to finish his beef....

On to Macnivens.  We were able to get a couple chairs right in front of the taps.  Sun King had 14 beers on tap for this occasion.  The list was packed with specialty brews.  One thing I have observed with Sun King is that, while their house beers are decent, their specialty beers are usually dynamite.  What's difficult is that they are usually quite hard to obtain.  So this event was truly special.  Here is a shot of one of the pour stations:

I enjoyed the following beers:

Poff the Magic Dragon
Stupid Sexy Flanders
Pappy Van Muckle
3 Grapefruit Jungle on hand pull

I also sampled:
Oak Aged Golden Princess
Sky Cake
Timmie on cask.

While enjoying our first round, we were joined by friends Tom and Brett.  I also spent quite a bit of time talking with a couple of Sun King employees who were there enjoying themselves as well.  More pics:
Firkin of Grapefruit Jungle

First GFJ

Second GFJ

Sun King employee

Tom enjoying the event

Third GFJ

Matt, Me, Tom, Brett...Matt has issues keeping his eyes open for pics

Matt and me
For me the stars of the event were the Pappy Van Muckle and the Grapefruit Jungle.  The Van Muckle was the first time I have tried a beer aged in Pappy Van Winkle barrels.  It was amazingly delicious.  I was a fan of Wee Muckle to begin with, but having it aged with Pappy took that beer to a completely different level of complexity and added an amazing smoothness.  I actually think it might be the best beer I have had from Sun King.  The Grapefruit Jungle was equally amazing.  I have had this one before and it was previously my favorite from Sun King.  The aroma of the beer is probably one of the most intense citrus hop smell I have ever encountered in a beer.  I could have smelled that beer for hours.  

This was quite a special day.  Looking forward to more events like this in the future.

Thanks to Macnivens and Sun King for doing this!

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