CBC 2016 in The City of Beery Love

by Renee on May 8, 2016

Philadelphia was awash in suds and beards this past week, as 12-thousand brewers and beer industry folks spent the week in town for the Craft Brewers Conference. The adage “it’s always sunny in Philadelphia” turned out to be untrue (it was overcast and rainy the whole week), but it didn’t matter much as everyone was pretty darn happy to sit inside some of Philly’s finest brewpubs. I had the good fortune to meet up with a couple of old and dear friends–Terri from high school at Monk’s Cafe, and Erin from college at the Eulogy Tavern. Great spots for reconnecting over an amazing choice of brews.

stepsBeards were plentiful, as I mentioned, but I also got to hang out with some of the finest women of craft beer during that week. We were in force in larger numbers than ever before. I spent some time at the opening reception at the Philadelphia Museum of Art with Meagen Anderson of SteadyServ, and Ginger Johnson of Women Enjoying Beer. (Yes, we ran up those steps Rocky-style of course!) Hung out with Mariah Calagione of Dogfish Head at one of their sponsored events at mariahWorld Cafe Live. And this year’s Pink Boots Society meeting was the biggest ever. It was a room full of estrogen and high energy!

tap handlesI had a couple of missions while I was there. One was finding a great vendor for tap handles for New Albion Brewing Company. I came across Tony at the the Alison Group, on the recommendation of a good friend. It looks like he has some really great products at a great price.


And also in New Albion news, Meagen and I had the chance to say hello to Jack’s former brewer, Don Barkley. He’s with Napa Smith these days, and it’s always a pleasure to see him. During that opening reception, Meagen and I also met up with Brooklyn Beer’s Steve Hindy.  What an amazing and inspiring brewer–if you haven’thindy picked up his books: Beer School and The Craft Beer Revolution, you really should. Of course there’s a mention or two of Jack in those pages!


So overall, a very successful and enjoyable Craft Brewers Conference once again. My next beery adventure is going to be even further away from home: stay tuned for  news of my trip to England and Ireland at the end of May–a celebration of my girl’s college graduation. We’ll be visiting McAuliffe territory in County Cork, and there could be some pub stories…. Cheers!


Wine Time (You Can’t Live By Beer Alone)

by Renee on April 13, 2016

winesIt’s true, I’m a cross drinker. I like my wine as much as my beer. I think that’s due in part because of my Italian heritage. (I’m half Italian on my mother’s side…to match up to the Irish McAuliffe genes from my dad). So I was excited to be invited to an Oregon wine dinner at Cleveland’s Pier W restaurant, which sits on a cliff overlooking Lake Erie in Lakewood. The views are spectacular, and the sunset on this particular evening did not disappoint.

Dinner kicked off with a velvety Oregon truffle custard, roasted beets, kumquats, trumpet mushrooms, and a crispy beet paper; served with a 2013 Chehalem INOX, a very well-balanced Chardonnay from the Willamette Valley. This was a varied and interesting way to begin the meal, and though I’m not a big fan of whites, I enjoyed this pairing. course

The second course was my favorite–Wild Sable, a buttery and delicious light fish; served with lemongrass, a tempura matchstick salad–topped with a salty local feta cheese–the perfect contrast. The wine was a Domaine Serene Evanstad Reserve Pinot Noir, also from the Willamette Valley.

I have a confession to make about the third course. It was a housemade Buffalo Bratwurst, with Napa cabbage sauerkraut served over a salsify gratin. And I’m sorry, Cleveland, but I am not a bratwurst girl. However, I loved the wine, a Syrah, Penner Ash, 2013.

dessertDessert was pretty darned amazing, though. A light and fluffy vanilla cheesecake filled with lemon curd–two of my very favorite tastes together, with toasted meringue, blueberry coulis, and a crème Anglaise. This was accompanied by a wine that was almost an ice wine, a sweet and complimentary Elkcove Ultima Late Harvest Riesling, 2010.

Guests enjoyed the food as well as a stunning view of Cleveland across the water. Several people told me they loved the Pier W happy hour and brunch, as well. If you haven’t been back to this Northcoast favorite for a few years, I IMG_4480highly recommend it.

(And to be clear, my meal was comped, and I was invited to blog about the event to promote the restaurant, however, as always, views are my own.)

Now, just so you know you’re still reading the Brewer’s Daughter’s blog, here’s a link to a very fun video of a song about beer, by the Asylum Street Spankers: https://youtu.be/YvJGs6MhZM0 Cheers!


A Beery Weekend in the CLE

by Renee on March 7, 2016

I drank a lot of beer this weekend. It was the 10th Annual Winter Warmer Fest in Cleveland on Saturday, held by thebeer Ohio Craft Brewers Association–always a great event. I missed a lot of festivals and beer events in 2015, and it was fun being back to it. I confess I didn’t keep track of what I drank other than a few check-ins on Untappd, but it just did my heart good to see so many people come out on a snowy March Saturday to drink good beer and have a good time. I brought my BFF, Cami, along; and while she’s not a big beer drinker, she did find a few beers she enjoyed as well. Cheers to event organizers and all the breweries who participated and brought nearly 200 craft beers for tasting to the masses. Over 1,400 people attended at Windows on the River in the Flats.

The next day was nearly as beery for me, as I rode along on the Cleveland Brew Bus, touring three local breweries: Nano Brew, Fat Heads and The Brew Kettle.  I was familiar with and had been to these breweries before, but lead by tour bus operator/owner Leslie Basalla-McCaffertybus, author of a book on Cleveland beer history, I still learned a lot, and enjoyed all the tasting, too. I’m excited to note here that I will be joining the Brew Bus team as a tour leader in the coming months. I look forward to sharing my love of craft beer with others from near and far who are interested in what Jack started back in 1976 at New Albion Brewing. Leslie and her husband Brian bought the business a year ago, and already have had to add a second bus, and expand the schedule because of demand. There are several different tours you can take–and even if you think you know Cleveland beer, I invite you to ride along, and bring a few friends! You won’t be disappointed, and may find there were a few things about Ohio craft beer you didn’t know. Gathering a little beer knowledge and tasting a lot of brews isn’t a bad way to spend a weekend. The best time of the year is coming as spring approaches–hope to see you on the bus and in the breweries!



Ohio Craft Brewers Conference 2016

February 5, 2016

Groundhog Day not only promised an early spring in 2016, but an avalanche of great brew to come in Ohio. Held over the course of three days, the Ohio Craft Brewers Conference, put on by the Ohio Craft Brewers Association, was held at the Dayton Convention Center Feb. 2-4. Only the second annual gathering, attendance […]

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