BreastFest: Good beers, good times, good cause!

This past Saturday I attended the 10th annual BreastFest at Herbst Pavillion at Fort Mason in San Francisco. This was the first year this event has made it across the bay to San Francisco, having previously taken place in Marin Brewing Company’s parking lot up in Larkspur.  This event was a combination of two of my favorite things…beers and breasts!  This event supported the Charlotte Maxwell Clinic dedicated to holistic healing for women suffering from breast cancer.  A good cause no doubt, and a great reason to bring together so many great breweries.

Many great breweries there, some of which I’d heard of and others that were new to me.  I’d have to say the highlights for me were Firestone Walker’s 13th Anniversary Ale and Nectar Ale’s Black Xantus, neither of which were being tasted, but lone bottles were opened at Firestone Walker’s table and I was lucky enough to try them.  Many mediocre beers but also some surprises like Anderson Valley’s Summer Solstice Cerveza Crema (a surprise to me as I have feelings of mundanity associated with this brewery) as well as Iron Spring’s The Crippla.

This event was a great opportunity to try many beers and for some of my friends, to be amazed at how many breweries there are out there just in Northern California.  I really hope this event comes back to Fort Mason next year, although I had such a good time I’d be willing to cross the bridge to attend!

Pictures below.

Tried Brenda and Jessica’s Bridal Ale – light, crisp and refreshing

Boys from Stone share their pale ale

Tried all of the above from local brewery, Triple Rock

One of the highlights from the day: Firestone Walker 13th Anniversary Ale

Joined by friends in partaking of the festivities

Another highlight: Black XantusRandom hair band rockin’ 80’s and 90’s music

Oddity of the day: Blanco Basura aka White Trash which was decent!

Russian River’s Vinnie Cilurzo pours 2008 Temptation aged in Chardonnay barrels

This photo about sums up the day

  • http://zmievski.org/ Andrei

    I remember you not really liking the Summer Solstice Cerveza Crema when we stopped by the brewery a couple of months ago. 🙂

  • pintmuse

    Yeah, that's what I thought so either it's a different recipe, my tastes have changed or we got a bad batch. Either way I liked it this time round! 🙂

  • Chris Butts

    Nice report! I think I am still recovering. Yes, way too many mediocre beers – and some really, really bad IPAs. Very disappointed with Stone, thought they would bring the big guns. I ended up spending way too much time at either Anderson Valley drinking their Brother David abbey ale, or at North Coast drinking… everything. And yes, Black Xanthus was freaking amazing. And an 80s hair metal cover band? EPIC.

    I was at the Marin location 2-3 years ago, honestly can say both places have their good & bad. Can't wait till next year.

  • http://twitter.com/LadiesOCB Ladies of Craft Beer

    I love Black Xantus- it was the first beer that Lee ever suggested to me 🙂 Looks like a great time!

  • pintmuse

    It was! First time I'd ever heard/seen Black Xantus and was so happy I got a chance to try it. Will definitely keep an eye out for it going forward. 🙂

  • http://fiwk.blogspot.com Royce

    Wow looks really fun. What other standout beers did you try other than the Cerveza Crema (which I agree is surprisingly good)? What did you think of the Black Xantus? Haven't tried that yet.

    By the way i really like the blog, keep the reviews coming!

  • http://twitter.com/ilyafeynberg Ilya Feynberg

    Loved the pictures! Loved the event's purpose! I can personally relate to this and my mother has gone through two “cycles” of breast cancer. Going through the second one right now actually.

    Anyway…

    San Fran. (the entire west coast really) is one of the best beer and food cultures around. It's just intoxicated up there. And so many incredible breweries up there in that entire stretch of area.

    Looks like a bunch of great breweries showed up, and some…eh…sub par ones….but I wouldn't be complaining! 🙂

    Now if they could just bring this event down here to Dallas! 🙂

    Ilya

  • pintmuse

    Hi Ilya!

    We are very lucky to have so many great breweries out here. The event has been going on for some time now, this is just the first time its been in San Francisco. Not sure of the brewery situation down in Texas but you should try to make it up to Colorado for the Great American Beer Festival in September! 🙂

    Thanks for reading!

  • pintmuse

    Hi Royce.

    The Black Xantus was really amazing. First time I had tried it but definitely one of the top beers that day. Sadly most were pretty mediocre but it was good to at least try them, right? Just got back from the Oregon Brewer's Fest and it was much of the same (mediocre beers) so I think that's to be expected at a festival. Much better to go check out individual breweries. 🙂 Thanks for reading!

  • http://twitter.com/ilyafeynberg Ilya Feynberg

    @pintmuse

    Sorry about the late comment, didn’t know about your response. 🙁

    Anyway…our situation in Texas is improving and we actually have some seriously good and well known craft breweries…at least down south here. Such as Real Ale Brewery, Southern Star, Saint Arnold’s among others.

    I won’t make it to the Great American Beer Festival this year unfortunately, BUT I will in Boulder, Co for the Beer Bloggers Conference her in November. Will you be in attendance?

    P.S. I think I might literally be hauling a trailer up from Texas to make sure that I come home with MANY of the hard or impossible to get Colorado or other out of state brews!

    Ilya