Craft Brewers Conference comes to San Francisco

If you imagine you're catching the heady whiff of beer in the air this week, you will not be mistaken. Around 2,500 craft brewers will descend on San Francisco for the Brewers Association's 28th Craft Brewers Conference from March 23-26. Although registration is closed and the convention itself is sold out, there will be plenty of chances for the public to enjoy craft beer on its own or with food, and to meet the brewers who make it.
On the eve of the convention, for example, Monks Kettle will host a collaboration beer dinner in conjunction withDeschutes Brewery of Oregon, featuring a special menu made for beer. Brewer Robin Johnson will be on hand to discuss how they made the beer.
If you miss the beer dinner at Monk's Kettle, fear not. You'll have plenty of opportunities to sample Deschutes' beers, including Woody, the traveling beer barrel. Deschutes will make stops at The Hopyard in Pleasanton on Tuesday, the Toronado and Beer Revolution on Wednesday, The Republic in the Marina on Thursday, The Englander on Friday, and City Beer and the San Ramon Whole Foods on Saturday. Along with Woody, Deschutes has brought The Abyss 2010, The Abyss 2009, Black Butte XXI, Hop Henge Experimental IPA, Red Chair NWPA, Mirror Mirror, Jubel 2010, Mirror Pond Pale Ale and Green Lakes Organic Ale.
In addition, on Wednesday, Barclays Pub in Rockridge will be pouring beers from East Bay breweries OBC (Oakland Brewing Company), Ale Industries, Drakes, Triple Rock, Linden Street Brewing, High Water Brewing and more. Also on Wednesday, Drakes will feature some of its rare and barrel-aged beers at Porky's Pizza Palace in San Leandro, including the 2009 Jolly Roger Imperial Brown Ale, Bourbon Barrel Aged 2009 Jolly Roger, Bourbon Barrel-aged aged Drakonic Imperial Stout (excellent), Exclusive CBC IPA (just one keg available), 1500 Hoppy Pale, nitro dispensed, Hop Salad Double iPA, Hopocalypse Imperial IPA and its Alpha Sessions American session ale.
In 1989, the last time the Brewers Association held its convention in San Francisco, craft beer was, relatively speaking, just a baby. In those days, we had Anchor Brewing, certainly. Sierra Nevada was still gaining traction and Russian River Brewing was still a glimmer in Vinnie Cilurzo's eye, if that. No one would have guessed back then that craft beer from the Bay Area and elsewhere would grow up to become the enfant terrible of the beer world, shaking the foundations of beer and gastronomy not only in America, but all over the world.

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