It was HOT!
Heritage Fest 2018 has come and gone. I’ll always remember walking from my car to the entrance of the festival and being drenched in sweat. It was hot. REALLY HOT. Ice was melting in breweries tubs almost as fast as they could replenish them. The festival was located in Forest Park across from the Art Museum. The tents were nestled in between trees and a light breeze would push through every now and again just to give everyone there a bit of relief from the heat.
First thing I noticed upon entering was not the merch tents, not the free water station or the Saint Louis Hop Shop Booth. The first thing I noticed was the WALLS of portable toilets. FINALLY a fest gets it…beer makes you pee. They were accessible from all angles of the fest and when things got busy there were little to no lines to use the facilities. Dope, I appreciate the person in charge of making that decision. Probably should have found out who that was…
I tucked my glass into my backpack and did a lap around the festivals semi-circular walking path. Small clusters of tents were spread apart but felt close enough to each other to give people room to stand and drink. A giant beer pong set up was already being put to good use as well as cornhole boards and the mini disc-golf course. This fest had plenty of entertainment. Outside of the lawn games there were 2 bands were setting up on opposite ends of the fest to fill the place with music.
There were ways to battle the anticipated heat at Heritage Fest as well. At the entry there was a large trailer that was dispensing cold water. Misters and large fans were placed around the fest to give people a blast of cool refreshment. Good Move.
Now onto the beers!
Like any beer festival you go to you may end up drinking more than you planned, so much that you may not even remember what you hand and what you liked (been there, done that, many many times.) This was not the case for me. I was “lucky” enough to have other responsibilities after the fest that I was actually able to take down the beers that I thought were fantastic. Here is a list of my top ten favorites in no real order:
Perennial: Pils. (Pilsner)
This Pilsner was fantastic, Super crisp and wildly refreshing on such a hot day. People lined up for Perennial’s Booth (Naturally) so this pilsner was flying!
Melvin: Heyzeus. (Mexican Lager)
From Wyoming and soon to be in Missouri this brewery makes a killer ipa. DESPITE their ipa making ability their Mexican Lager took the top spot. rehydration at it’s best.
Bluewood: Sidelined at the Prom. (Imperial Stout)
This 16% monster wasn’t even the biggest beer they brought! This stout was an almost necessary break from the light with heavy fudge and cinnamon flavors coating your tongue. Beast.
Narrow Gauge: Sparkle Motion. (N.E Pale Ale)
Narrow Gauge is a hometown favorite and beers like Sparkle Motion make it easy to see why. Citrus on citrus blasting you right in the face.
Four Paws: Fil Mishmish. (Saison)
This apricot saison was an absolute crusher. Big fruit flavor with sweet and tart bites throughout the whole beer. This beer was gone within the first 90 mins!
Third Wheel: Loh Fidelity. (India Pale Lager)
Over that past 2 year India Pale Lagers have creeped their way up into my favorite styles of beer. This one is no exception. Beer flavored beer, sweetbread malt backbone coupled with touches of hop bitterness make this beer exceptional.
Wellspent: On the Bright Side: Mango.
I’ve been burned by mango in the past and to be honest it’s a hard fruit to work with. Wellspent made mango look easy. Great, juicy, sweetness floating together in delicious harmony.
Civil Life: Czech Pilsner. (Pilsner)
Civil Life is bringing back the classics. Their Czech Pilsner was loaded with honey sweet malts and crisp hops. The simplicity, brilliance and sheer, clean, refreshment of this beer kept me smashing.
4 Hands: Rubus Flux. (Farmhouse IPA)
Big boysenberry flavor blended with brett funk make this India Pale Ale unique and quaffable. Well balanced and easy drinking. I kept going back to this one.
Square One: Toretto. (N.E IPA)
This beer was fast AND furious. A super crushable balance between light sweetness, creamy body, and HUGE citrus flavors. This is one of those perfect summer beers we all talk about.
I hope that everyone who attended the festival had a great time! Between the heat and the sudden, super heavy rainfall. Thanks again to the Saint Louis Brewers Guild for reaching out to me and letting me experience this great festival with them! A special thanks goes out to all the breweries who put every ounce of care and every drop of sweat into making sure that all who were thirsty and hot were quenched and cool.