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Sunday, March 1, 2015

Craft Beer Rising - Bites & Brews @ The Shafston Hotel

Craft Beer Rising is a celebration of Australian and local craft beer and a fantastic excuse to grab some mates and hang out at your local and drink local.
Every year local bars and venues get involved putting on different events and this year Brisbane's Shafston has jumped on board with a lane-way festival called Bites & Brews which aimed to celebrate some of Brisbane's excellent food as well as delicious local craft beer.

The weather had looked a bit like rain earlier in the day but for the most part it held up to create a really enjoyable, sunny, fun and beer filled day with a great atmosphere.

Queensland breweries were well represented with Newstead, Green Beacon and Fortitude all offering some of their tasty brews along with a great collection of other Aussie craft breweries like Holgate and Mornington Peninsula.

Fortitude brought along their Patersbier(Fathers Beer)a full flavoured Belgian style session beer which had a familiar yeasty funk and was similar in style to a blonde and was just plain refreshing.

Green Beacon impressed with their brand new red IPA called Reds Dead, an American hopped and malt balanced IPA which I have to say was really delicious and a bit of a sneaky surprise for those that attended the festival as it was a preview here before debuting Sunday 1st of March at the Beacon home base in Newstead.

My favourite beer of the event was from Sydney's Rocks Brewing in the form of their no non-sense Conviction IPA which was just bursting with American hops with the expected pine like hit of resinous flavour coming through from the first to the last sip making for a very enjoyable beer for anyone that loves heavily hopped IPA's like I do!

Now let's talk about the food because Brisbane really does have some excellent food trucks and a fair chunk of them were at this event with ChipTease, King of Wings, Bun Mobile and Char Baby parking in the lane ways and dishing out delicious eats.

I went with King of Wings to start out the day and line my stomach for the impending deluge of beer that was to follow and it whilst it was my first experience with king of wings it also super tasty so I'll be keeping an eye out for their locations around Brisbane.

This was also my first experience with ChipTease, they churn out some incredible looking creations with things like pulled pork or nachos toppings adorning crispy potato or sweet potato chips but the one that caught my eye was the dessert chips.

Sweet potato chips tossed in cinnamon sugar, topped with Nutella and Chantilly cream. Very decadent and very sweet but the combination really works but be prepared to share!

I thoroughly enjoyed this event however there is one glaring (pun intended) issue is that there simply wasn't enough shade from the summer sun and not nearly enough seating and tables.

The good news here is there was enough room for more tables, more seating and more shade so I'd expect the next event to sort out these couple of issues and if anything it means that the turn out far exceeded any expectations as there was certainly a lot people enjoying them selves by mid afternoon!

I'm really glad to see another large pub jump onto the craft beer bandwagon and although it might be awhile before we see the Shafston's taps pouring all the beers that were represented here, it's still a step in the right direction and it could easily become an annual event that coincides with the last weekend of Summer!

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