Social media feeds and the Beer Bloggers Conference

We’re gearing up to head out to the Beer Bloggers & Writers Conference in Tampa and in addition to following along here on the blog, I wanted to make sure I had a current list of social media feeds you might want to follow for all of the good stuff!

And if you’re interested you can also follow along the conference overall on Twitter and Instagram, just search #BBC16 on Twitter, and #bbc16 on Instagram.

The Session #113: Mass Observation

The SessionThis month’s edition of The Session is hosted by Boak & Bailey and they asked us to engage in a little bit of research study (Mass Observation):

In the late 1930s a team of social researchers descended on Lancashire and spent several years observing the people of Bolton and Blackpool as they went about their daily lives. As part of that, in 1937 and 1938, they made a special study of pubs, which led to the publication of one of our favourite books of all time, The Pub and The People, in 1943.

What we want people to do for The Session is to recreate this exercise in 2016: take a notebook to a pub or bar — any one you fancy — and write a note of what you observe.

  • How many people are drinking?
  • Which beers are on tap, and which are people actually drinking?
  • What are they eating?
  • How are they passing the time?
  • What are the topics of conversation?
  • How is the pub decorated?
  • How many TVs are there and what are they showing?
  • Are there pot plants, parrots, spittoons?
  • How many smokers are there? And vapers?
  • Is there a dartboard, pool table or quiz machine, and are they in use?

I have to confess I didn’t do my homework on this one—as in, sitting in a bar with notebook, observing and writing. (It’s also Sunday as I write this, so my timing is off as well.) But yesterday (Saturday) I did spend a small amount of time in Deschutes Brewery‘s Bend pub, drinking their latest anniversary beer, and I can offer a few answers to those questions:

  • A lot. All of them.
  • The taplist looked something like this. Judging by the array of colors, people were drinking quite a variety.
  • Burgers, salads. Possibly house-made tater tots.
  • Many who were not engaged in conversation were watching the Germany vs. Italy soccer game on television, with lots of cheering.
  • Pretty standard “American brewpub.”
  • I saw three within easy view from where I was; two were showing the soccer game, the third golf I think.
  • “Pot” plants? Er, no. There might be some potted plants. There’s a spittoon behind the bar, that patrons can try to toss coins into.
  • None. There is no smoking in most places here any more.
  • No, no, and no.

What a great idea though, and a good exercise for writers (i.e., us). If I get a chance sit and observe in a pub sometime soon, perhaps I’ll revisit this with more in-depth notes.

Central Oregon: Beverages Farm Tour (tomorrow)

High Desert EATsIt’s a bit of last minute notice, but here in Central Oregon there’s an event taking place Saturday, June 25 (that’s tomorrow!) that might be of interest to beer-minded folks: a Beverages Farm Tour with High Desert EATs (Educational Agriculture Tours). Full details are below, but be aware you will need to sign up/purchase your tickets today for $35 (Friday the 24th).

Join us in the third farm tour event in the Jefferson County Farm Tour series, High Desert Educational Agricultural Tours (EATs). Have you ever wondered how our local libations are produced?

Taste milk fresh from Poland’s Organic Diary cows, tour Jefferson County’s only malting facility at Mecca Grade Estate Malt, check out how spirits are made at New Basin Distilling, and learn what makes the high desert soil great for growing grapes at Maragas Winery!

Tour Runs from 8:30am – 1:30pm
Lunch and wine tasting is included in ticket price: $35.00
This tour is recommended for ages 21 and up!

Tour Starts/Finishes at Maragas Winery.
Free Shuttle departs Maragas Winery at 8:30.

Tour Stop #1: Poland’s Organic Dairy Farm, 9:00 – 10:00
3751 NW Elm Lane, Madras

Tour Stop #2: Mecca Grade Estate Malt, 10:15 – 11:15
2048 NW Columbia Drive, Madras

Tour Stop #3: New Basin Distilling, 11:30 – 12:15
1789 NW Mill St., Madras

Tour Stop #4: Maragas Winery, 12:30 – 1:30
15523 SW Hwy 97, Culver, OR

Shuttle with 4-H Club guide service available for the first 24 registrants.
Water is available on the tours courtesy of Earth20.
We love pets but please leave yours at home for the tours.

Questions? Contact Maura at 541-325-1064.

Especially relevant to beer lovers is the Mecca Grade Estate Malt tour—Central Oregon’s only (as far as I know) maltster. They will have a selection of estate-malted and brewed beers pouring specially for this tour. I’ve had some of those beers at homebrew club meetings—they are very good and showcase the malts nicely!