Last weekend (Saturday, April 21), local beer connoisseurs and classic rock fans came together as one for the 102.9 WMGK Locals Only Beer Fest, where 25 of the best PA, NJ and DE area brewers each showed off their brews.
The day was absolutely beautiful, perfect for an event with such a wonderful location.
This was a standout beer festival to attend. I loved the friendly competition brought out in the brewers.
Each brewer was asked to bring their best beers, one Flagship (the beer they are known for, or most proud of year-round), and one Specialty (something new or more experimental), and drinkers would be able to choose their favorite beers.
These two winners not only win the bragging rights that comes along with a beer festival like this one, but they also won $5,000 in commercials on WMGK or a free live broadcast for their brewery.
Not a bad prize for a local craft brewer.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Best Flagship Beer at WMGK Locals Only Beer Fest: @BrokenGobletPA – Bubba’s Tea Bag American Pale Ale #beer #craftbeer #1029wmgk #wmgk” quote=”Best Flagship Beer: Broken Goblet – Bubba’s Tea Bag” theme=”style7″]
I am not a big fan of green tea myself, but this was clearly a favorite of others.
With a truly unique and complex flavor and bouquet, bold grapefruit fruit flavors and notes of sweet strawberries, apples, and lemongrass slowly pull you to oblivion. Kudos to Broken Goblet for such an interesting flagship beer.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Best Specialty Beer at WMGK Locals Only Beer Fest: @CrookedEyeBrews – Angry Piper Scotch Ale #beer #craftbeer #1029wmgk #wmgk” quote=”Best Specialty Beer: Crooked Eye – Angry Piper” theme=”style7″]
Pouring a clear mahogany amber with light tan head. Smoky, woody, with caramel and a faint dark fruit note. An interesting beer again that is not exactly in my wheelhouse, but game recognize game.
This is a great beer, even if it wasn’t my personal favorite.
My Favorite Beers
These beers didn’t win any awards, but they certainly win my respect. My top three beers at the event were (no surprise) IPAs, included below in no particular order. Of course there were other beers I enjoyed there (yes, even the Golden Pilsner from Yuengling), but these three stood out the most for me.
Double Nickel Brewing Company – Backward Sunrise
“Born in the west and raised in the east, this liquid-sunrise IPA moves against the grain. Dry hopped with magnum, citra, and simcoe making this IPA crushably hoppy.”
-Double Nickel Brewing Company
I think I just have residual love for Double Nickel now because of the Mega Dank 420 Kush IPA I had last week. Definitely a West-Coast, IPA, Backward Sunrise is something I could see myself drinking daily.
Enough hops to remind you it is an IPA, without knocking you down. Great as an entry IPA for those new to the style.
Stable 12 – Sugar-Coated Pony Kisses
“We all love the high octane IPA’s, but how many pints at 8-9% can you actually have? Sugar Coated Pony Kisses was created in order to fulfill your lupulin jones without sacrificing flavor for a lower a.b.v. This 5.8% a.b.v. ale was made with Pale Malt, Munich Malt, Flaked Oats, Lactose Sugar and Falconer’s Flight, Mosaic, and Madarina Bavaria hops. The culmination is a gentle, yet firm, Sugar Coated Pony Kiss at 55 IBU’s.” -Stable 12 Brewing Company
Okay, not so sure about the gentle part. This beer is HOPPY. 55 IBUs seems low when you actually give it a taste, I’d have figured this was a bit higher.
This is a beer that tastes like a higher ABV IPA without knocking you down. Although a shade higher than the usual sessionable beers, I’d still call this a session IPA.
I wasn’t as much of a fan in the first few sips, but as I worked my way through, I enjoyed it more and more.
And a huge thank you to Stable 12 for the extra cans – I’ll definitely be doing a full review of this beer coming soon.
Ship Bottom Brewery – Pleasure Island
“Welcome to Pleasure Island. Our Imperial Rye India Pale Ale is hand crafted with rye, pale, wheat malts and oats. The rye malt adds a little spice to the IPA and the hops will leave you with aromas of grapefruit, melon, lemon, lime, gooseberry, passion fruit and lychee, tropical, floral, and citrus. This is an aggressive IPA that isn’t for the faint at heart!” -Ship Bottom Brewing Company
Maybe I’m just a sucker for a good nautical theme, but I always enjoy Ship Bottom Brewing Company. Personally, I think the Sugar-Coated Pony Kisses was a bit more aggressive than this one – but it’s not a bad thing.
It’s got bite, but the wonderful tropical and stone fruits are there to back it up. I look forward to visiting this brewery in the future.
The best beer festivals are the ones that embrace their inner foodie, and this one was no different.
With stellar food offerings from Pic-A-Lilly Inn (serving Pulled Pork Sandwiches or Buffalo Nuggets) and Harvest Seasonal Grill (serving Grilled Chicken Clubs or Quinoa Fried Green Tomato Wraps), drinkers were treated to some fine local eats at a fair price.
The Full List
Here’s a full list of all the brewers and the beers that were available at the Locals Only Beer Fest. So many fantastic local breweries in one place.
2018 Bubba’s Teabag IPA
Blood Orange Impact
Conshohocken Brewing Company
Blood Money IPA
Burn Everything Porter
Hazy IPA 9%
Angry Piper’s Scotch Ale
Dragons & Yums Yums
Union St IPA
I Love Lamp
HoppyJava Coffee IPA
Where In The Delaware Am I’
Midnight Fox Oatmeal Stout
Locust Lane Amber Lager
Duffy’s Cut Red Ale
Cloudy and Cumbersome
Fictional Characters IPA
Naked Raspberry Sour Wheat
Neshaminy Creek Brewing
The Shape of Hops To Come
Philadelphia Brewing Company
Fleur de Lehigh
Barrel Aged Stouty Stout 2.0
Bicentennial Cream Ale
Bottom Shack IPA
Pleasure Island Imperial Rye IPA
Sugar Coated Pony Kisses IPA
Something Old, Something New #3 IPA
Curly Tail Pale Ale
Greenville Pale Ale
Winterthur Spring Wheat
DTown IPA #4
Philadephia Pale Ale
Haunted Forver Black IPA
Black and Tan