Monday, November 17, 2014

2014 Fremantle BeerFest

Yesterday was the 2014 BeerFest in Fremantle where a huge gathering of WA's brewers brought their best beers and ciders. As always, the setup at the Esplanade was awesome with music, food and master classes to make it worth staying the whole day in the hot sun. Thank god I have the day off today! 

We had bought tickets through Scoupon a while back, and we'll definitely have to remember that for next year. I think Scoupon had the tickets for $5 cheaper, but the real win was that you could skip the massive ticket buying line and go straight to the ticket checking line. 

The festival was quite busy (especially for a Sunday) but not so busy that you had to wait in line for a long time. People were getting drinks then sitting down at the tables and watching the bands which we thought were all really cool, especially in comparison to the music at the Beaufort St Festival which was mostly god awful dance pop with the bass turned up so high that I kept thinking my phone was ringing the whole night. 

We sent straight to Little Creatures to check if they had their Saison, but they didn't so we went back to the start and had our first drink at Eagle Bay, yum! We also had a beer at Cheeky Monkey and a cider at Blackwood Valley, and after scoping out the rest of the festival we stopped at Feral for a tasting paddle. 

I had:
  • Fanta Pants (Imperial Red Ale, 7.6%)
  • Karma Chameleon (Imperial Black IPA, 10%), best beer of the day
  • Karma Citra (Black IPA, 6.6%)
Andrew had:
  • Kelis (Saison, 6.5%)
  • Razorback (Barley Wine, 10%)
  • Hopfen Fahrt (IPA, 6.4%), this one wasn't on the list but was at the taps

We had our first two while watching the band and saved our last glass for the beer masterclass. I saved the Karma Chameleon because that was one I definitely didn't want to rush!

The beer tasting masterclass was with Matt from Bob's Bar. He talked a little bit about types of beer, types of tastes and faults in beer, and about how to start getting into beer tasting. I found the bit about faults really interesting, especially that certain tastes are supposed to be in certain types of beers, but if they're in others they're considered a fault. My palette is definitely not refined enough yet! We also got to smell some hop flowers (which were very pretty and smelt exactly like beer), and crunch on some malt (which was really delicious, but didn't taste like beer). 

We finished off with a Saison cocktail from Cocktail Gastronomy and a beer from Mash Brewery (the Copy Cat IPA). The cocktail was nice, sweet, but we couldn't taste the beer in it. The meringue thing on top was really yum. 


We also couldn't resist and got some waffle fries. I don't know why this isn't a thing that is everywhere, they were amazing!

Any trip to Fremantle isn't complete without dinner at Maya. After drinking and not eating much all day we left all the plates squeaky clean.

I love festivals at Fremantle! I think they've really worked out how to make it an awesome day. We went to the Beaufort St Festival the day before and it was quite hard not to keep making comparisons. We had fun at the BSF too, but they didn't get the setup, facilities, and content as right as the Fremantle festivals do. They had different constraints, and they did well trying to keep the masses moving in the direction traffic would, but all in all it was meh in comparison.

Having said that, we will definitely being going to both again next year. Perth is so cool!