I'm an experienced corporate communicator and editor with an eye for interesting events and an attachment to my trusty Oxford dictionary.
Coldie, tinnie, amber ale, pot, brew, middie - a beer by any other name would taste as sweet, or perhaps that should be bitter. Anyway, you get my point. Whatever you call it and whatever container it comes in, Australians love beer in all its forms. If you've got an appetite for ale or a longing for lager, then get along to Melbourne's second annual Good Beer Week for eight days of beer and cheer from 12 to 19 May 2012.
We all know that in Australia we love our beer ice cold, but at the moment it's hot – beer has never been more popular. Aussie beer drinking in the past would conjure up images of blue-singleted, beer-gutted, stubbie wearing (shorts, not bottles) ockers heading down to the local to pick up a carton of regular, garden variety tinnies. Today your typical beer drinker is more likely to be wearing a suit or stilettos and quaffing craft and boutique beers in select beer establishments or as the preferred accompaniment to fine dining. We're educating our beer palates and becoming a nation of beer connoisseurs.
Ebullient and egalitarian events, befitting the great Aussie beer drinking experience, are a feature of Good Beer Week. Tastings, dinners, beer appreciation classes, courses, home brewing tips, and beer and food matching events will take place at venues across Melbourne and some regional areas such as Bright, Wangaratta and Bendigo. Learn from the experts or indulge your beer bias. Who could resist events with names like Brewers and Chewers, Brewers Beergustation, Beer for Brekkie and Beer vs Pig III: The Swine Off?
Details When: Saturday 12 May to Saturday 19 May 2012. Where: Various venues throughout Melbourne and regional Victoria. Cost: Varies from Free to $360 with most experiences priced between $25 and $100. Program: The full program can be accessed here. Tickets: Are available by clicking on the Buy Tickets link for each event listed on the website. If you need to register for a Free event instructions will be found on the individual event listing. Map: You can access a map showing event sites here. Competitions: You can win free tickets to selected events every day until Good Beer Week begins. Find out how here.
Below I've listed some of the highlights from the program.
Barley's Angels Building on the success of the regular bi-monthly beer events for women, this is a female only event with female entertainment, female-brewed beers and beer cocktails. It will be held from 6pm on Friday 18 May at The Local Taphouse St Kilda and tickets cost $45.
Lager Than Life Master Brewer Brad Rogers from Byron Bay's Stone and Wood will host a free tasting class at Transport Public Bar, Federation Square on Monday 14 May. You must email firstname.lastname@example.org to book your place. Full details here.
Beer Trivia Janet McLeod's Trivia has had a beer makeover and will feature all things beer on Sunday 13 May at The Local Taphouse St Kilda. Questions about beer and beer prizes should tempt you, as well as the fact that it's free to play. Full details here.
The People's Pint Launch Who thought "Of the people, by the people and for the people" could be applied to beer, as well as democratic government? The Crafty Pint asked Australians to dream up a beer and then had people vote on the best suggestion. The winner – Leo Hede's Double Hoptendre – will make its first appearance at Temple Brewery and Brasserie, East Brunswick at 7pm on Monday 14 May. For $20 you'll get your first People's Pint, entry into the prize draw and nibblies. Full details here.
Surely you couldn't beer to miss Good Beer Week 2012. You'll think you've died and gone to hop heaven.