It has been a good amount of time since this years Bistro IPA fest and all those tasty IPAs were served. The beer is always amazing – that is just by default. But this year what I remember most was the people. There was a real good vibe.
That morning, I wasn’t really in the mood to go. It was just one of those days. I had drank too much the night before and had to go somewhere that night. It was hot out and I knew that Hayward was going to be real hot and the festival crowded. But the IPAs drew me to there. I got there and the place was packed. But it was manageble. I dove in and tried a few of the ones I knew I wanted. Hopfather from Russian River, which I knew was going to win people’s choice (two kegs were drained during the festival), the two from Drakes, and the one from valley. There were some suprises. Everyone was talking about something called Fat Head – I finally found it and tried it – woh – excellent. And the story is great too. Sent to the Bistro by FedEx – a keg in a suitcase by brewer Matt Cole - and the beer won gold. I even got to do a mini tasting of Rye IPAs and Black IPAs – it was very interesting to see how the beers could be so different yet with same basic taste.
But yeah back to the people, lots of postitive beer related fun. I met the owners of the Bistro – Vic and Cynthia – and they seem like great owners that really care about the beer community. I hung out a good amount of time with a bunch of guys from Boston. We kept going back and forth about east coast beers vs west coast beers. They came to the west coast mostly for the IPA fest. Now that is some dedication. I even talked to one guy who had grown up near the Kern River and we shared a Kern River IPA together.
Overall – it was a great fest and now that we are half way into September – I am thinking back to that warm August day and craving an IPA.
More pics here.