This post is in collaboration with the Organic Beer Fest.
Another month, another beer fest! This time around, it’s all about two things that Portlanders are passionate about: organic beer and sustainable living. The Organic Beer Fest aims to be as earth-friendly as possible with over 50 organic brews, local food vendors, on-site composting, recycling bins, and reusable signage. The festival makes a huge effort to prevent as much event waste as possible ending up in the landfill. If you walk, bike, or ride public transit to the festival, you can get a free tasting token for helping the festival support its sustainability focus.
If you want the fun of a summer festival, but get overwhelmed by crowds, the Organic Beer Fest was made for you. It’s $7 for a recyclable tasting cup and $1 for a tasting token, just like the last beer fest I attended, but the festival location in Overlook Park creates a more relaxed, neighborhood feel. Even as more people showed up in the evening after work, the festival never lost its laid back vibe. The giant Dutch Elm tree is a beautiful centerpiece in the park and perfect when you need a break from the sun.
By now, most people are aware that organic products are much better for you, but organic isn’t just about what’s going into your body. Organic ingredients are better for the environment and for the folks handling those ingredients too. Rest assured, all the beers are either certified organic or contain at least 70% organic ingredients. With over 50 beers available, it’s tough to decide where to start your tasting…
With short or no lines at each tasting station, you have your pick of beers. Pictured above is the Two Kilts Manbun IPA and Lakefront Fuel Cafe Coffee Stout. I’m not a coffee drinker, but this stout had such an enjoyable rich, roasted flavor. John is normally way more into IPAs than I am, but they have been growing on me lately. The Double Mountain Clusterf#ck and Bison Organic Kermit the Hop both had a drinkable bitterness suitable for a hot summer day. If you want a liquid dessert, you can’t go wrong with Samuel Smith’s Strawberry Ale.
Where there’s beer, there’s gotta be food too. After a few tastings, we soon found ourselves eyeing the all vegan menu at Vegimoto. I’ve had plenty of vegan hot dogs, but this was the first time I’ve had one made of tofu. It was good, but nothing to wow about. We also tried the vegan cheesesteak, and they just fired up a new batch when we placed our order. So satisfying to chow down on that mountain of “steak”, and they’re very generous with the cashew cheese.
The bright yellow Dump Truck (what a name!) was impossible to miss at the festival. We tried both vegan dumplings on the menu: the Down to Earth mushroom dumpling and the Potato Curry dumpling. The curry dumplings are a nice idea, but were too heavy for my taste. I enjoyed the portobello mushroom filling, but I wish the wrappers were lighter. The gingery flavor of the filling and the spicy tahini sauce were tasty though.
Note: This post is in collaboration with the Organic Beer Fest. I was invited to attend the festival and received complimentary beer tastings, but paid for my own food. This was not in exchange for a positive review and all opinions expressed here are my own.