Saturday's Giants Brewfest Was a Clusterf#%k. Here's Our Advice for Next Year

Categories: Beer, Food Fests

rsz_beerfest_crowd.jpg
Brian Yaeger
We don't mind rubbing elbows. It was the rubbing of everything else that got to us.
​Saturday's Giants Brewfest was only a success if you consider that the event sold out. But packed N-Judah cars more than three hours before game time was an early indicator that there would be more fest-goers than "collector's edition" sampling glasses provided to the first 1,700 to enter the gates through AT&T Park's Lot D. There were reports that between 2,300 and 2,600 tickets were sold.

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Brian Yaeger
Magnolia's Dave McLean was one of seven Brewers Guild members pouring suds.
​With so many beer festivals in and around the city (including three this Saturday ― click back soon for a preview), it was tough to justify the Brewfest's one long line to get in, followed by nine beer lines that were, it stands to reason, one-ninth as long. At first, attendees groaned about being poured only seven three-ounce samples from the one or two beers each member of the SF Brewers Guild had on tap, but we didn't see anybody complete their sample card. Everyone seemed to opt for buying proper pints at Public House or elsewhere before the game.

If the Guild plans to partner with the Giants again next year, here are some recommendations for the organizers:

rsz_beerfest_line.jpg
Brian Yaeger
Note for next year: Get more ticket takers.
​1. Stage the fest in a larger lot. It's great rubbing elbows with fellow brewfesters, just not shoulders, knees, and toes, too.
2. If you're going to make everyone wait in the same line, how about more ticket takers spread farther apart to prevent the bottleneck?
3. Finally, seven breweries does not a beerfest make ― you know this since you actually brought in two others. Of course, in addition to Lagunitas from Petaluma, the other add-on brewery at this fest celebrating local, craft beer was ... MillerCoors? Don't worry, we get it. They probably -- hopefully -- foot a hefty portion of the bill to promote their "craft" beers such as Blue Moon and Batch 19. But if the A's can lasso some 30 breweries to their beer fest, why can't you?

At least beer fans got to see rookie Buster Posey get an RBI single at his first at-bat and swing .750 in his first game.

Follow us on Twitter: @SFoodie. Follow Brian Yaeger at @yaeger.
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