In just a few short weeks, the 7th Annual Northern Virginia Summer BrewFest will make its way to Morven Park in Leesburg, Va. The NoVa BrewFest elevates beer tastings to a whole new level, hosting serious brewers and beer connoisseurs.
The spotlight for this festival will be the more than 60 microbrews from all over the country. If you are a fan of handcrafted microbrews created in small batches with an interesting blend of flavors, attending the Northern Virginia Summer BrewFest will be a perfect way to spend a late weekend in June.
It takes skill, patience and experience to produce craft beers, and brewers take great pride in their creations. As many small wineries have developed in Northern Virginia, so too have small-craft breweries. Selecting and pairing foods with beer is becoming as popular as wine and food pairing. Not only is craft beer great for pairing with food, it can also be a main ingredient in preparing specialty food items. New this year to the Summer BrewFest is a collaboration between Port City Brewery, The Guiding Knife, and military chef Joe Mariano. Chef Joe Mariano has been working diligently with the Culinary Education Company and The Guiding Knife to develop special recipes for this year’s BrewFest. They will be performing live cooking demonstrations with specially developed recipes using beer as the star ingredient. Items will include pickled carrots, salad dressings, marinades, sauces and even a beer cheesecake. You can check out the live demos at the beer stage throughout the day on June 21st and 22nd.
The Beer Joint Brewing, Leesburg, will be showcasing its specialty brews created by its brew master, Bret Kimbrough. A sneak peak of other craft beers that Bret will be showcasing include a German-style rye beer called “Old Carolina Roggen” and a French Farmhouse Ale called “Deux Mois Biere de Garde.”
Kimbrough is also collaborating with Charlie Buettner, brew master from Mad Fox Brewing, to create a special surprise brew for VIP ticket holders.
This year’s lone winery will be Corcoran Vineyards. Its craft brewery has joined us in the past and will be there again, but this year, its vineyard will also be represented. Corcoran Vineyards will have three wines to sample, including an apple wine, made from a variety of local apples. This wine is “dry” but bursting with apple aromas and flavors. The other two wines comprise a 2011 Rose, an off-dry rosé made from Pinot Noir grapes grown in Loudoun County, and a Cello, made with 100% Petit Manseng grapes. The latter is a version of the Italian Lemon Cello, bursting with lemon aromas and flavors because of the lemon zest infusion.
A ticket to the BrewFest gives you admission, a special commemorative beer tasting glass and four tickets to taste your choice of craft brews. However this festival is not just beer sampling—it is a fantastic day to bring out the entire family. There will be food, music and even activities for the kids. If you can’t make the NoVa BrewFest this summer, all is not lost. The BrewFest will be back this fall in Centreville at Bull Run Regional Park on Saturday and Sunday, October 18th and 19th. Join us for one or join us for both.
For more information on this year’s summer and fall BrewFests, go to www.novabrewfest.com for a complete list of breweries represented, food vendors, bands and entertainment.