Because I did have to drive back to Portland after imbibing, I kept my stay to about an hour and a half and limited myself to tastes. By the way, tastes out here aren't what you find in Portland. The tasting line on the glass is a little iffy. A one-ticket taste was six ounces. A two-ticket full mug was 12-14 ounces. Tickets cost $1.
|Fire pit and music|
Off to one side of the serving area is a fire pit, part of which served as a sort of music stage. This is a gas fire, not the smokey real thing. Good thinking. A couple of acts rolled through while I was there and the music added to the ambiance without overwhelming it.
|One of several grub choices|
Another great aspect of the Celebration of Beer is brewers or brewery-connected folks were pouring beer or hanging out around the taps chatting with patrons. I spent a few minutes talking to several brewers. I'll be making a trip out to Mill City Brewing the check the place out as a result of one conversation. The point is, most of our Portland festivals have gotten so large that these kinds of conversations rarely happen.
When you look at an event like, it's all about perceived value. I always ask myself, "Would I attend again?" Even with the travel involved and the fact that the $25 entry fee (tasting mug and five tokens) is steep, this is still a great little event worth a try for any self-respecting beer fan. I'll look for it next year.