This weekend's Savor craft beer festival brings brewers and beer fans from across the country to the National Building Museum for two nights of tastings and seminars. But the real fun takes place at local bars in the nights leading up to the festival, with happy hours, brewer meet-and-greets and rare-beer events. Every day this week, we'll publish a list of that night's must-do events, which don't require RSVPs. Just show up and pay for what you drink.
Two of the finest breweries in Fort Collins, Colo., are bringing 10 drafts to Scion for an event cleverly called "Beer & Cheese: An Evening with Funkwerks, Odell, & Right Proper." The folks who run the cheese counter at D.C.'s own Right Proper Brewing Company will match Funkwerks' flavorful saisons and Belgian-style ales and Odell's brawny IPAs and malty Scotch ale with a variety of cheeses. (The private pairing class with the owners of Odell and Funkwerks is sold out, but cheese and beer pairings can be purchased a la carte at the bar while they last.) Scion has posted the full draft list on its site.
It would be easy to make "War Between the States" jokes about ChurchKey's "North vs. South" night, which pits the beers of Maine's Allagash and New York's Ithaca against those of Georgia's Terrapin and North Carolina's Foothills, but really, all that matters is that all 50 taps and five casks will be pouring some truly excellent beers. My pick-only-one choices would be Allagash Midnight Brett, Ithaca White Gold Belgian ale, Terrapin Maker’s Mark barrel-aged Big Hoppy Monster and Foothills IPA of the Month, and then the cask of Terrapin Maggie's Peach with hibiscus, green cardamom, cinnamon and peach in the cask. All beers are sold in four-ounce glasses are well as full pours to help with sampling. You can see the full list on ChurchKey's Facebook page.
Eugene, Ore.,'s Oakshire Brewing has been earning raves for its small-batch beers and aged seasonals, but since they distribute only within Oregon, most Washingtonians haven't been able to try them. Thank God for Savor, then: The brewery is taking over 10 taps on the roof of Jack Rose tonight, with local fixtures 3 Stars taking over the other 10. I'm most looking forward to tasting Oakshine, but 3 Stars is making sure they won't be overlooked: They're debuting a version of Southern Belle brown ale aged in a cask of Knob Creek rye whiskey, which Jack Rose boasts as "the only known Knob Creek Rye barrel to ever leave the distillery." All beers will be $5 between 6 and 9 p.m., and the draft list is posted here.