#newbrew – PorchDrinking.com
Every summer, Ohio Brew Week takes over my tiny hometown of Athens, Ohio. Unfortunately, I tend to be on vacation for most of it. However, this year, I’m skipping the beach and staying here. The 10th Anniversary of Ohio Brew Week takes place July 10-18, and is bound to be the best one yet!
The brainchild of Dan Gates, former director of Ohio Brew Week, and the late Jon Sparhawk, a local business owner, this week-long “celebration of craft brewing” started as an idea “to attract visitors to Athens in the summertime when Ohio University is not in full session as a way to help restaurants and hotels survive those slower months.” Since then, it has expanded, and now includes more than 76 events, over 276 craft beers and awesome keynote speakers, like Steve Hindy, Chairman and Co-Founder of The Brooklyn Brewery and former Athens paperboy.
On August 9, I was invited to join the Wynkoop brewers and staff to pick locally-grown hops for their beer Belgarado. It is a Belgian style Pale Ale made with all Colorado grown ingredients, except for the yeast. Fresh cut Chinook hops were shipped over to the brewery from Voss Farms in Arvada, CO. One of my friends from Kentucky, Andrew, was in Denver for the week and he was thrilled to be a part of this process. Plus, we were goaded with the promise of free beer.