Smitty's Tips for 12 South Winter Warmer

Smitty's Tips for 12 South Winter Warmer

I am excited, how about you guys? I know most of you have attended beer festivals and know the routine. But just in case there is anyone somewhat new to a high alcohol beer festival, I thought I would share some pointers. Please don’t take this as me acting like some know-it-all. I am just trying to be helpful so that everyone has a blast. Cool?

1. Unlike the summer beer festivals, these beers will be 40-50% higher in alcohol. So do the math. Twelve 2 ounce pours over 1 hour will be 24 ounces, which is about the size of a bomber. If you go at that pace for 4-5 hours drinking 9-11% beers, you are likely to get pretty messed up. Trust me on this – these beers sneak up on you FAST. There are over 100 beers, so you are unlikely to try them all. Just pace yourself and keep track of how much you are drinking. I have seen seasoned beer festival goers drink too much too fast.  Let’s just say – they did not remember much. I don’t know about you all, but I want to remember the great beers I try. As they say, “It’s a marathon, not a sprint.”

2. Drink lots and lots of water. I drink water in between every beer. It keeps you hydrated in addition to slowing down your drinking pace. Sure it will be more trips to the porta john, but you’ll thank me in the morning.
3. Do not start the festival on an empty stomach. There will be great food vendors there as well, so refuel with more food midway through the festival.
4. Beers will run out during the festival, so I suggest you hit the ones you really want to try first. I like to map my top 15 or 20 before hand.
5. If there are people behind you in a serving line, be polite and step aside once you get your pour. Try not to congregate or chat at the serving table. It’s an etiquette thing….
6. Make sure you have a designated driver or take a cab home. .08 is the legal limit in TN and it does not take much to reach it, especially at a high gravity beer festival. A DUI will go on your permanent record and will cost you $3-$5000 and 48 hours jail time. It also jeopardizes the safety of others on the road. Don’t risk it. That ends the PSA.

See you there!