Waking up with one sock on is always an adventure in confusion. Downtown Chicago Howard Johnson has treated me like a king because A) I wasn’t murdered in my sleep and B) I could sit on this 1970’s beige toilet with my laptop plugged in. I’m hungover, kids. BAD. This must be what Lindsay Lohan feels like all the time. Dragging my zombie ass down to the bus appears I’m not the only one that’s hurting. Ironically the bus is provided by Goose Island, partial creator of said hangover. Thanks again, Goose Island! I pass out instantly, missing hours of corn and soy, waking only for some Pepto. This must be what rock stars feel like.
Arriving at our mid-stop lunch destination in quaint LaFayette Indiana, bones crack as I stretch like a stripper past her prime. Main street LaFayette has a soda fountain, knick-knacks, hipster bike shop, theatre and a local Pride community center. Being a proud supporter of all things gay (I am not, however) this is great! Researching their website, it’s heartwarming to see so much local support from the community in mid-size town Indiana. Pulling through town, I had a whole “Twilight Zone” vibe; seeing this turned it all around.
LaFayette Brewing Co. (LBC) resides in a gorgeous turn of the (20th) century building like something out of a movie. Recently renovated back to its historical nature thanks to a grant from the city, redwood stairs and the upper wooden floor creak with character. Ceiling fans and a fresh beer are sure to exorcize the thick humid air crabbiness from your soul. Aside from the bar upstairs, billiards, darts, foosball and a stage round out the entertainment options. Having a chance to sample all of their beers, I was impressed with their Tippecanoe Common Ale, the first hop-forward Steam beer I’ve tried. This beer inspired me to formulate a India Pale Common recipe I hope to brew soon. The food and beer at LBC are satisfying, however nothing in the world sounds better than an iced coffee!
What day is it? Oh yeah, still Friday the 13th. Finally arriving in Indianapolis the bus is buzzing with excitement. My ears pop in the elevator as I hit my floor, a nice corner room with a foyer and a perfect view of Lucas Oil Stadium in downtown Indy. Rocking a serious case of road boner, I hit the shower to squeeze one off and head down to registration.
3PM: Registration and “Tradeshow” notes:
- Upland Brewing Their wheat beer tasted like a brett fermentation, I freaked the brewer out who cracked a bottle to be sure there wasn’t a wild yeast contamination. Nope, just me. I still say it tasted like a bretty beer. Their lambic was also stellar.
- Samuel Adams: Got to taste my first Pumpkin beer of the year thanks to Samuel Adams. It’s a nicely balanced Imperial offering that was not too spicy and refreshing. Also tried a BOSTON ALE. Totally different from the famous Boston Lager. I didn’t jot anything down but recall it was quaffable. From their Barrel Room Collection: Tried 13th Hour. The rep told me the beer was aged in Hungarian wood. Lots of big flavors in this guy, nice to see the big guy geek out.
Friday, July 13, 2012
4:30 PM Introduction by Julia Herz of the Brewers Association
5:00 PM Keynote Speech – Garrett Oliver of Brooklyn Brewery
5:45 PM Live Beer Blogging
7:00 PM Walk to dinner at the Tomlinson Tap Room
9:00 PM Indy Pub Crawl (click here for the map, compiled by Girls Pint Out)