The second Bierhaus Beerfest was held over the weekend of Friday 20th to Sunday 22nd June 2008. It was run in conjunction with the Shandon Street Festival which is a community festival held on the Saturday.
While Dave, owner of the Bierhaus, made great efforts to have everything up and running for the festival unfortunately the one thing he did not book was the weather! Saturday was a really horrible wintry day, which was more of a damper to the outdoor events at the Shandon Festival which I visited before adjourning to the warmth of the Bierhaus.
We had hoped to have an ICB meet-up but this did not materialise, but a few members were there at different times on Saturday and I hope this article is in tandem with their thoughts of what beers were on offer.
When the lads from Galway Hooker were installing their brew in the Bull and Castle, I quizzed them about their inspiration for producing an IPA. Ronan told me about their experience at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver and said that if I ever got the chance that I should go. I took note and when Jerry Kolbly from The Newport Beach brewery in Orange county visited us in the Bull and Castle and also mentioned the GABF, adding that he could get me a brewers pass for the weekend, I was there!
The October Bank Holiday week-end has traditionally been known as the Jazz Weekend in Cork (are you goin' jazzin' boy?), but over the past few years I have also visited the Franciscan well this weekend. This year the Oktoberfest was my main focus and I must say I had a most enjoyable time. Being a single man, with no commitments, I did not have to apply for passes to attend! Herewith is a summary of my partaking- hope the memory is o.k.
Since the opening of the Bierhaus, in August 2006, we have a second super location to visit for top quality beers. This year Dave, Mr. Bierhaus, also put on an Oktoberfest Special where he mainly showcased Irish beers, with some international specials as well. Even better choice!
"Day return to Hilden, please."
The girl at the ticket window looked confused. "Where?"
"Hilden. It's near Lisburn."
"One moment please" and she scurried off into a back office. I became intensely aware of the queue behind me, the membership wondering why they always joined the one with the nutter at the front.
A young man appeared at the ticket window. "Yes?"
"Day return to Hilden, please."
"Just a minute..." he turned and consulted a chart on the wall, and on coming back sold me a day return ticket to Hilden.
I took it from Irish Rail's unfamiliarity with the tiny village between Belfast and Lisburn that on my first ever visit to a beer festival I wouldn't be joined by hordes of thirsty Dubs on the Rail Ale Express to drunken oblivion. As it turned out, after transferring at Portadown, I was the only one getting off the train at the suburban halt. A handful of families wheeling buggies were down at street level heading in the direction of the thumping music from the yard of the Hilden Brewery, staging the second day of its annual three-day beer festival under the banner "Live Beer, Real Music".
The Franciscan Well’s Easter beer festival has proved, by all accounts, to be a very popular beer festival, gathering most of the craft brewers of Ireland under the one roof (or marquee). This was to be my first visit to the festival, and I was advised to arrive early. So shortly after lunch time on a glorious Easter Saturday, I strolled up the quays, and reached my destination. Already, there was a scattering of people in the marquee out in the courtyard. As I didn’t see any fellow forumites on first glance, I turned my attention to the stalls, and decided to head first to the Hooker Brewery, to try their Galway Hooker. As chance would have it, two more ICB regulars were already there.