A Religious Experience

Casey, Andrew, their two friends, and I got to Guerneville for the Russian River Beer Revival around 2 on Saturday, and I have to admit, at first glance it looked pretty trashy. I kind of felt like we’d arrived at some small town in the south—which made me feel somewhat at home. And then we saw the BBQ.

Teams were competing, each with a grill surrounded by tables, usually under a canopy (if they were lucky), and we could just walk up to any and grab a rib or a chicken wing. More than one if we wanted. Alternating with the BBQ stands were breweries which had anywhere from 1 to 4 beers on tap that we could taste with our official tasting glasses. And it was all free! By which of course I mean it felt free. We only paid once, $26 for each ticket to get in.

Me with beer at the Russian River Beer Revival

All told, I must’ve had 8-10 ribs, all cooked a little differently, as well as some suprisingly good barbecued chicken wings (mostly dry rub). Of course we also drank a fair amount, I’m not sure how many breweries there were (maybe 20?). They were all based in Northern California, and I’m definitely sure we didn’t make it to every one. The sun was out and the temperature was up, so we even managed to take a break and stick our feet in the Russian River, watching the paddlers drift by.

Casey, Andrew, and friends in the Russian River

The Revival started to wane around 5pm, so Andrew and I began tossing the frisbee, eventually some other random folks joined in, and we threw for like an hour. I felt thoroughly redeemed getting all sweaty (in jeans no less) after consuming so much wonderful food.

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