The quick and not so “dirty” hints for the Indiana Microbrewers Festival. 100+ brewers meaning likely nearly 1000 different beer possibilities. There is no way to try it all. But you likely know that. There are multiple types of beer festivals and the IMBF is the ‘huge offering’ type. One beer fest attender strategy is to find new beers you don’t know yet and go find those. I found that strategy often leads me walking back and forth across festival grounds with the advantage meaning at least walking off some of the calories and giving me some time. Another strategy, a more efficient strategy, is to move carefully from one brewery to another deciding as I go which I will skip and which beers I will sample. I skip almost every beer I know (sometimes a favorite lulls me away from that goal) on the hunt for some lesser familiar beer or a new brewer or brewery. I encourage you to find your own strategy instead of wandering aimlessly from place to place.
What beers? Find the list here http://www.indianabeerfest.com/ & scroll down
Where do I start? It seems so many people enter and just go get in some line. We suggest you decide what types of breweries you MOST want to sample from! Here are some thoughts:
– Do you want to try those you are less likely to ever drive to? If so, look for the breweries that are farthest away. If you live in Central Indiana, maybe you start with 3 Floyds of Munster, Bare Hands of Granger, Evil Czech of Mishawaka, Carsons of Evansville, Tin Man of Evansville, Iechyd Da of Elkhart, or Big Dawg of Richmond.
– Do you want to find the most unusual beers? That might be Bare Hands ThaiPA, Figure 8’s CAMP coffee carmel, Flat12’s surprises, Burn ‘Em Smoked Pork Porter, Books&Brews Soba buckwheat, and BEER LIST HERE
– Do you want to try new breweries? Start with Mashcraft of Greenwood, Scarlet Lane of McCordsville, Chilly Waters of Indy, Taxman of Bargersville, Tow Yard of Indy, and on to Daredevil.
– Do you want to visit the biggest so you don’t miss what your friends talk about? Sun King, Upland, 3Floyds then Flat12, Triton, etc.
– Do you want to visit award winners? See our recent list of gold medalists for Brewers Cup READ HERE Gold medals listed here and start with Chilly Water
– Do you want to revisit the “Tried & True,” Some of Indiana’s oldest breweries? The Broad Ripple Brew Pub, Barley Island, Oaken Barrel, The Bloomington Brewing Co., Mad Anthony, New Albanian, Lafayette Brewing.
Maybe you have your OWN thought such as shortest lines, beer other people talk about at the event, the ability to get exercise by walking back and forth…. just think about how you will approach this.
Remember, you have a small tasting glass and even a 2 ounce pour means 6 samples equals one legal bottle of beer. The body can handle one bottle per hour for most of us (some a lot more, some less) so 20-30 beers to try is very possible, just which ones? With 80 breweries you can’t even get one from each place! (Hey, that was NOT a challenge.)
And our own Nathan Compton had a great blog with some other thoughts (Potty break, anyone?) for the Winterfest so rather than repeat it all, just check out Nathan’s thoughts HERE.
AND say HI to Kathleen who will be there for Indianabeer.com !!