Good pubs, Good Beer, Good People

Saturday, March 26, 2011

CaskFest Draws Beer Lovers

Uno's CaskFest, now in its third (fourth?) year, keeps packing them in the only Uno's location--out of more than 170 in the world ---with a built-in brewpub. After learning of the CaskFest, one couple, Andre and Laura, booked a hotel room and traveled from Rhode Island to attend. A Brooklyn pair , Jim and Barbara traversed the mighty Verrazzano to get there, and homebrewers Dave and Cathy (from the "high" side of usually submerged Bound Brook) were also first-timers. Dave, in fact, regaled The Venerable Beerscribe Mark Haynie with a homebrew tale involving pumpkins and heavy-toasted oak chips that had been soaked in Wild Turkey for six months. In exchange for an audience with Mark, Dave promised to get the 8-month process going in time for us to sample his brew come next Autumn. Also in attendance was the Summa Cum Laude Film Crew from Montclair State University whose mission it was to capture in action the man they claim is the "Real" Most Interesting Man in the World--yours truly. And what better place than Uno's Cask Fest? Lots of nice folks, plenty of good beer and the special ambience that is Uno's Brewery and Grill with its inimitable cast of characters make for a fun time. Nine beers were lovingly laid out for the peripatetic cerevisaphiles to sample, and even better, portions of the proceeds of beer and food were going to a special scholarship at Immaculata High School called the Joe Davenport scholarship. Davenport was a classmate of Uno's brewer Mike Sella, and the money is destined to assist needy but worthy kids who seek admission to the private school. Featured Casks were two from Uno's, a Pale Bock and a kick-ass Scotch Ale. Flying Fish had Exit 4, a Belgian Tripel, Weyerbacher had its Verboten and Old Heathen Imperial Stout, and Dave Hoffman's Climax IPA was also available. Yards brewing had its E.S.A and its IPA, and Fegley's Brew Works Hop Explosion rounded out the field. The PubScout only stayed for a relatively short time--about four hours--but Sella didn't expect the casks to be kicked until 6 or 7 PM. Photos of the event are here, and select videos are up on my Facebook page (Kurt Epps), though you might have to be my friend to see them. They should also be on YouTube shortly. In all, another rousing success for Sella. And a boon for beer lovers. Cheers! The PubScout

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