When In Manila, there are a lot of places where you and your friends can hang out for drinks. A great way of making conversations more interesting is having a bucket of ice cold beer on the table. However, you might notice that the same old brands of beers are always the ones touching your lips. Yeah, some Pale Pilsen or San Mig Light might hit the spot, but it’s never a bad idea to try something new. In search of these new experiences and flavors of beer, we headed down to Pampanga to attend the first annual Angeles Craft Beer Festival.
The Angeles Craft Beer Festival was held at MarQuee Mall in Angeles City, Pampanga last December 2 to 4. It was a great time for beer drinkers as there was a wide selection of beers from a number of microbreweries in the Philippines.
Here are some of the cool stuff we did at the Festival:
Tasted a LOT of beer.
Love the bottle label designs and colors
First of all, don’t worry guys. I was sober the whole time I made rounds at the microbreweries booth. There were at least 100 different kinds of beers present at the festival from over 20 breweries. It was quite impossible for me to accomplish this feat even though there were medical staff present to take care of me if things went south. So what I did was ask for the best selling beers from each breweries and distinguish what’s unique in each of them.
The best thing about some of them is that the breweries incorporated local ingredients that are native to their provinces like mango, coffee, coconut and more.
Ube flavored beer on tap
Learned a lot of things about beer.
Here are some of the things I picked up at the festival:
In general, beer is made from only four ingredients: hops, malted barley, yeast, and water. Hops is the flower of the hop plant Humuluslupulus. They are used primarily as a flavoring and stability agent in beer, to which they impart bitter, zesty, or citric flavors.
And these are the different varieties of beer you are likely to encounter:
- Kolsch – Refers to a clear, top fermented beer with a bright, star-yellow hue similar to other beers brewed from mainly Pilsener malt.
- Lager – Lager (German term for store room or warehouse) is a type of beer that is conditioned at low temperatures, normally at the brewery. It may be pale, golden, amber, or dark. Although the defining feature of lager is its maturation in cold storage, it is also distinguished by the use of specific yeast. The good ol’ San Mig is lager.
- Ale – a type of beer brewed using a warm fermentation method, resulting in a sweet, full-bodied, and fruity taste.
- IPA – stands for India Pale Ale, IPA refers to a type of pale ale prepared by the British when they colonized India. The high hop content helped preserve the beer for the long journey from England to India. There are three main styles of IPA produced today: the American-style, English-style, and Dutch or Imperial.
- Stout – a dark beer made using roasted malt or roasted barley, hops, water, and yeast. Stouts were traditionally the generic term for the strongest or stoutest porters, typically 7% or 8% produced by a brewery.
- Porters – a dark style beer developed in London from well-hopped beers made from brown malt. The name was first recorded in the 18th century, and is still thought to come from its popularity with street and river porters.
- Wheat beer – a beer, usually top-fermented, which is brewed with a large proportion of wheat relative to the amount of malted barley.
Got to meet new people and enjoy festival activities.
Beer has this mystical force of making it easier to meet new people. At the Craft Beer Festival, we met a lot of new people having fun with their friends, enjoying a round of beer and delicious food.
Wonderful music also filled the night that was brought to us by Chris “Hot Fingers” Marshall and the Jazz Grill All Stars.
Hot Fingers at play
There were also dart boards visitors could use and have a chance to play against Gilberto “Bhoy” Ulang, a competitor in the upcoming World Darts Championship in London.
A lot of people played with the lifesize Jenga present at the festival grounds as well.
The Angeles Craft Beer Festival was a big success! I know that craft brewing movement is just starting here in the Philippines but I know that in the near future, bars and pubs here in the Philippines would have their own signature brew. We’ll be able to find new flavors and new ways to have beer with a true Pinoy taste and the thought of it already excites me.
I can’t wait to go back next year and try some more very Filipino beers.