The past several weeks have been building up to this Wednesday, October 5th. I will be flying out to Denver that night to experience one the most coveted beer festivals in the world. With breweries from far and wide, I often have felt a week at GABF is like the infamous week at band camp. Stories from friends usually start with, “This one time at GABF…” It’s this week every year where thousands of beer fans from across the world fly and drive into Denver to try some phenomenal beer. Breweries’ taprooms are flooded with visitors and the city of Denver sees an economic lift to the tune of around $20 million. For breweries attending the festival, a medal can turn a local favorite overnight into a beer drinker’s destination.
I have talked with brewers and it seems there are breweries on both sides of the GABF aisle, those who look toward it every year as a testament to their hard work, and those who avoid it in order to carve their own path. I believe there is no right or wrong as to whether you want to enter as a brewery or not, but the festival on the whole speaks volumes to what the industry has grown into over the last decade, a culture of dedicated individuals from all walks of life excited for what lies ahead.
I am an eager observer ready to soak up what it has in store for me. You can follow my shenanigans as they happen @BillSellsBeer on twitter, or you can check back on the website to see new content. If you’re attending and reading this, come say hi, I will be pouring beer at the Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Co. booth Saturday night!!
As always, writing & photography (or photograph) by yours truly.