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Portland Beer Week 2016 preview Peaks and Pints Proctor TacomaPeaks and Pints Proctor Tacoma

It was roughly 20 years ago, and I was only beginning to realize that the country of Belgium had anything to do with beer. The witbier I had that day, from a brewery long lost to the mists of memory, was a bit tart and only lightly spiced. The milkiness of the appearance and the flavorful wheat body were a revelation, and for someone to whom Mirror Pond seemed exotic, it was downright radical.

I couldn’t imagine a beer like that ever becoming popular, but it was about the same time that Coors’ Keith Villa was experimenting with the recipe that would become Blue Moon. Witbier no longer seems so radical—partly because of Blue Moon—but that’s how things evolve. That publicity gave Beerfest on the Bridge a boost. The fest worked with Saugatuck Brewing to come up with “Portland Strong Strawberry Stout,” a special ale to commemorate the community spirit that grew from the storm event. Before the bridge event, the community had held beer tents at festivals, but Barnes said this festival is different and more laid back. “You’re just there with a couple hundred other beer aficionados and the river and the nice weather. It’s been very popular, and very well received in the community.”

Unlike other beer weeks, MBW will focus exclusively on Massachusetts brewers, their beers and the supporting beer community.

So with that said, here are some events to put on your calendar. One of the nation’s longest-running craft beer festivals, the Oregon Brewers Festival is considered a craft beer destination, and 50,000 fans annually make the pilgrimage to Beervana to drink up what the festival has to offer. The Oregon Brewers Festival is one of the heliyum sam adams nation’s longest running and best-loved craft beer festivals. Situated on the west bank of the Willamette River, with picturesque Mt. Hood as a backdrop, it is the ideal venue for anyone who loves craft beer. With a laid back attitude and scores of award-winning beers, the festival reflects the essence of the city of Portland.

This Wednesday, November 30 at 11am, the 21st annual Holiday Ale Festival begins in downtown Portland! A 10-day celebration of beer in the greatest beer city on earth. Featuring 100+ events at locations city-wide from beer festivals to beer dinners, pairing parties, seminars, screenings, and challenges.