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    The Tailspin Ale Fest website stated it clearly! "Rain, snow and ice will not stop The Tailspin Ale Fest! The festival WILL NOT be canceled because of the weather." Canceled it was not, and a rousing great party was had by all over the weekend. Friday’s activities included the first Barrel Roll event, and Saturday was the main event. Both events were held this past weekend at historic Bowman Field inside the revived WWII era airplane hangar. The venue is fantastic as the oldest continually operating airfield in North America.

    The Tailspin Ale Fest was in a heated space, but part of the event was held outdoors. Large tents were put up outside the doors to the hangar, and food trucks were there serving up grub to go with the beer. Once you entered the hangar, to your left was a table with foil tins full of pretzels. Here event goers could make their pretzel necklaces to pair with their beer tastings. To the right was a booth with the Louisville City Football Club, the city’s new professional soccer team. When you entered you received your souvenir tasting glass and a drink ticket (each time you received a sample your ticket was marked off by the attendant.)

    All around the outskirts of the hangar were the featured breweries from all over the country. In the very back of the hangar was the local beers and breweries section. Here is a rundown of some of the beers my party and I sampled. They were all great selections and each had their own distinct flavor and flair. 

    Iceman Hard Cider

    Victory Brewing Co: Wild Devil and Anniversary 19

    Southern Tier: Creme Brulee

    Upland: Sour Reserve

    Traveler Beer Co: Lemon Ale and Apple Ale

    Dark Horse (MI):Jolly Pumpkin

    Flat 12 Bierworks: IPA and Porter Stout

    Kentucky Ryde Chicken

    BBC: Bourbon Ale

    Apocalypse: Pie Pa

    Great Lakes Stout

    Bells Brewing: Hop Slap Dippa

    Founders: Curmudgeon

    Cumberland Brown Ale

    One of the cooler local spots that stood out to me as being more interesting was the guys from My Old Kentucky Home Brew. Their shop is located in the Highlands off Baxter Avenue. We sampled the Cranberry Lemonade, Cold Broot Beer (a mix of cold coffee and root beer-delicious!), and Pine Mango Choco Spice (went down fruity with a spicy aftertaste). These guys were really cool and loved sharing their product(s). 

    This marked the second year of the Tailspin Ale Fest; last year’s event sold out and this event came close to doing that. If it hadn’t been for the weather all week they may have. The event space was crowded so beer lovers united in spite of the cold, ice, and leftover snow and rain on the roads. Hoping the event moves to a bigger venue, although it’s hard to beat the historic hangar at Bowman Field. It is quite crowded inside, but everyone is quite jovial which makes it bearable! There are tables in the middle of the space and tall tabletops around the hangar, making great places to hang out and chill together with your beer.

    The event is all about beer. If you’re a beer lover or connoisseur, I highly recommend checking out the Tailspin Ale Fest in 2016. We’ll have to see what kind of weather Louisville brings, but I know it will be a winter warmer nonetheless. Look for information about the Ale Fest in December or January next year. Follow them on Facebook and Twitter as well.

    Photo credit: Erin Nevitt

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    About Erin Nevitt

    Longtime Louisvillian, I am a children's librarian at heart and have a passion for children's lit. I am most recently a stay-at-home mom who is always on the move, searching for family fun in Louisville. If it's free, it's preferable!

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