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2015 Brewmasters' Dinners

Dinner tableIf you love craft beer, you must come have dinner with us!
The 2015 events will be a tremendous treat. The original weekend event was suggested by Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, and much ado has been made of them by our guests.
The celebrity beer pairing dinners show off the ultimate flexibility of beer with food. The Traditional Brewmasters’ Dinner shows off our Featured Brewmasters for this year’s event, and the Calibration Dinner with Avery & Dogfish Head really starts our celebration weekend off “calibrating your palate”!

Our 2015 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines event host is the Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, and they have again enthusiastically wrapped their arms around both the Calibration Dinner and the Traditional Brewmasters’ Dinner.

New last year, the 2015 Village Brewmasters’ Dinner will be held at a location yet to be determined. This dinner will have new hosts each year, just as our Traditional Brewmasters’ Dinner does.

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Calibration Dinner

In turn, both welcoming us to the Vail Cascade Resort & Spa and opening our 15th Anniversary weekend, the Calibration Dinner on Thursday night will begin in the Library and Mountainside Room, and continue in Atwater on Gore Creek. As is traditional, Adam Avery and Sam Calagione will be co-hosting the opening festivities.

Sam Calagione, Founder/President, Dogfish Head Brewing & Eats, Milton, DE
Dogfish HeadSam CalagioneWhen Sam Calagione opened Dogfish Head in 1995 it was the smallest commercial brewery in America making 10 gallons of beer at a time. 

Today Dogfish Head is among the fastest growing breweries in the country.  Dogfish Head has focused on brewing stronger, more exotic beers since the day it opened as the motto “Off-centered ales for off-centered people” attests to.  Dogfish Head has grown into a 180 person company with a restaurant/brewery/distillery in Rehoboth Beach and a production brewery in Milton, Delaware, selling beer in 27 states. 

Sam currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Brewers Association and was a finalist in 2011 and 2012 for a James Beard Foundation Award in the Outstanding Wine & Spirits Professional category. Fast Company Magazine named Sam one of The 100 Most Creative People in Business in 2011.   He is the author of “Brewing up a Business” and “Extreme Brewing,” and co-authored “He Said Beer, She Said Wine.”  Sam lives in beautiful Lewes, Delaware, with his wife and Dogfish VP Mariah and their two children Sammy and Grier.

Adam Avery, Founder/Brewmaster, Avery Brewing Company, Boulder, CO
Avery Brewing“My love of beer began as an infant. My aunt would put a few drops of the precious liquid on my pacifier to ease the pain of teething. My passion grew through the years as my parents had a "European attitude" towards alcoholic beverages. As I grew into adulthood, I found it difficult to find brands that challenged me. My tastebuds required more flavor than breweries at that time were creating.

I was forced to homebrew. All kinds of strange concoctions poured from my kitchen. The cases stacked up.....my friends and I couldn't quaff as fast as I brewed. The creations, I was told, were great. "Start a brewery!" they said. So with the aid of Dad and his friend, Steve Wagner, I turned my hobby into a profession.Twenty years later, my singular goal is to challenge your tastebuds, taking brewing to another level of flavor, quality, and consistency. I am......a beer junkie!”

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Traditional Brewmasters’ Dinner

This year our Featured Brewmasters are globally diverse, hailing from Belgium and the United States. We are always pleased to welcome our international colleagues, and sincerely thank them for making the trip to join us.
Brouwerij Van SteenbergeJef Versele

Jef Versele, Owner of Brouwerij Van Steenberge is our International Brewmaster for 2015.

Jef was born in Ghent, which is in the East Flanders region of Belgium, and is the seventh generation owner of Brouwerij Van Steenberge. He received his degree in social science and began working in the brewery in 1999. A member of the board of directors, he is responsible for the Brouwerij Van Steenberge Sales Department.

Jef and his wife, Theresa Deroose, have been married since 2001 and have 3 children that would comprise the eighth generation of ownership going forward. Theresa is a member of the Brouwerij Van Steenberge board of directors as well, and is responsible for the Marketing Department, the Financial Manager and the HR manager.

Ron Kloth, Founder/Owner of Papago Brewing Company is our American Featured Brewmaster for 2015.
Papago BrewingRon Kloth

Ron got into fermentation at an early age, and started winemaking in the 6th grade with a kit he received at Christmas from Sears.  In college in the early 80's at the University of Colorado he was introduced to homebrewing. He was a founding member of the Arizona Society of Homebrewers which is now one of the largest homebrew clubs in the country and is active in the Arizona Craft Brewers Guild.

In 2001 he became President of Papago Brewing Company in Scottsdale, AZ. Papago has since been recognized as one of the top craft beer bars in the country by numerous magazines and online beer sites. Once opened Papago immediately began contract brewing small batches of beer which quickly became the focus point of the business for the unique beers being made and have gone from small batches made just for Papago to now canning and being distributed throughout Arizona. Papago was the first in Arizona to make a Wheatwine, a Double IPA, Belgian Quads and even a GABF bronze medal winning Black IPA even before the style was officially identified.

Ron is a Certified Cicerone and BJCP Judge.  Ron has led dozens of trips to Europe and throughout North America visiting breweries and exploring the regions beer culture. On one of these trips to Belgium while visiting Van Steenberge, the idea was developed for Van Steenberge to contract brew a Belgian Strong Ale for Papago and it quickly became a reality. In 2013 Ron and many of his partners invested into a new brewery start up called Huss Brewing in Tempe which now produces the Papago line of beers. When he isn't doing one thing or another in the beer business Ron is an active competitive curler.

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Village Brewmasters' Dinner

Village Brewmasters' Dinner will be held at (tbd).

Featured Brewmasters at this dinner will be (tbd).

This dinner will take place on Friday evening, kicking off at 8:30pm to give everyone time to get there from the Cascade following the 6:30pm seminar. Transportation will be provided.

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Now that you are familiar with this year’s Hosts, here’s the lowdown on the Dinners themselves:
The format of the Brewmasters’ Dinners is rather unique. It is a “double” beer pairing in the full sense of the term. The chef for each dinner is challenged to design a menu around the creations that the Brewmasters offer. Each course features one beer from each brewery, therefore considerably more difficult than a single pairing for each. And Chef is pairing five courses for each dinner, which makes for an incredible beer adventure as well!

This year Avery Brewing Co.,  Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Papago Brewing Co., Brouwerij Van Steenberge, and the Village Brewmasters’ Dinner hosts have all agreed to follow the historical precedent of donating product and assisting us with our special event, and it has made it possible to keep the cost of dinner to our guests quite reasonable. The cost of dinner will be $82/person, plus tax and gratuity. Tickets can be purchased online by going to our Big Beers Festival Tickets page. Should an event be sold out, a waiting list will be kept by the coordinator, and you can contact us directly. Cancellations are fully refundable, providing that we can rebook your seat. (Thus, refunds will only be issued after the replacement reservation has been paid in full.)

For historical Brewmasters’ Dinner information, scroll down toward the bottom of this page. All previous Brewmasters’ Dinner menus are available, as well as Marty Jones’ review of our first Brewmasters’ Dinner.

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Previous Brewmasters' Dinners

As our Fifteenth Annual Brewmasters’ Dinner gets underway, we offer an overview of  our previous Brewmasters’ Dinners, including menus and a review, so that you can peruse the culinary extravagance that has gone before…

2014 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Todd Bemis and the Vail Cascade Culinary Team
Brewmasters:
Cam O’Connor, Deschutes Brewing Co., Bend, OR
Scott Vaccaro, Captain Lawrence Brewing Co., Elmsford, NY

Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Atwater on Gore Creek
Deschutes
Captain Lawrence

2014 Calibration Dinner

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Todd Bemis and the Vail Cascade Culinary Team
Brewmasters:
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Adam Avery, Avery Brewing Co., Boulder, CO

Calibration Dinner Menu

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa
Avery Brewing
Dogfish Head

2014 Village Brewmasters' Dinner

The Lord Gore Restaurant, Manor Vail Resort, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Weston Schroeder and the Lord Gore Culinary Team
Brewmasters:
Gordon Schuck, Funkwerks, Ft. Collins, CO
Jared Jankoski, Goose Island Brewing Co., Chicago, IL

Village Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Lord Gore Restaurant
Funkwerks
Goose Island

2013 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Todd Bemis and the Vail Cascade Culinary Team
Brewmasters:
Kevin DeLange, Dry Dock Brewing Co., Aurora, CO
Matt Brynildson, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Pasa Robles, CA
Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Atwater on Gore Creek
Dry Dock Brewing
Firestone Walker

2013 Calibration Dinner

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Todd Bemis and the Vail Cascade Culinary Team
Brewmasters:
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Adam Avery, Avery Brewing Co., Boulder, CO
Calibration Dinner Menu

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa
Avery Brewing
Dogfish Head

2012 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Todd Bemis and Sous Chef Jay Spickelmeier
Brewmasters:
John Mallett, Bell's Brewing Co., Kalamazoo, MI
J. Todd Usry, Breckenridge Brewery, Denver, CO
Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa
Bell's
Breckenridge Brewing

2012 Calibration Dinner

Atwater on Gore Creek, Vail Cascade Resort & Spa
Executive Chef: Chefs Stephen Belie and Maria Sacconi
Brewmasters:
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Adam Avery, Avery Brewing Co., Boulder, CO
Calibration Dinner Menu

Atwater on Gore Creek
Avery Brewing
Dogfish Head


2011 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Adam Votaw
Brewmasters:
Steven Pauwels, Boulevard Brewing Co., Kansas City, MO
Chris Bauweraerts, co-Founder of Brasserie d’Achouffe, Ardennes, Belgium
Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa
Boulevard Brewing
Brasserie D'Achouffe

2011 Calibration Dinner

Atwater on Gore Creek, Vail Cascade Resort & Spa
Executive Chef:  Adam Votaw
Brewmasters:
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Adam Avery, Avery Brewing Co., Boulder, CO
Calibration Dinner Menu

Atwater on Gore Creek
Avery Brewing
Dogfish Head


2010 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Adam Votaw
Brewmasters:
Peter Bouckaert, New Belgium Brewing Co., Ft. Collins, CO
Lodewijk Swinkels, Brewmaster for LaTrappe at Bierbrouwerij Koningshoeven, Berkel-Enschot, The Netherlands
Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Vail Cascade Resort & Spa
New Belgium Brewing
La Trappe

2010 Calibration Dinner

Atwater on Gore Creek, Vail Cascade Resort & Spa
Executive Chef:  Adam Votaw
Brewmasters:
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Adam Avery, Avery Brewing Co., Boulder, CO
Calibration Dinner Menu

Atwater on Gore Creek
Avery Brewing
Dogfish Head


2009 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Centre V Restaurant in the Arrabelle at Vail Square, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef:  Darrell Jensen
Brewmasters:
Vinnie Cilurzo, Russian River Brewing Co., Santa Rosa, CA
Matt Brophy, Flying Dog Brewing Co., Fredericktwon, MD

Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

2009 Calibration Dinner

Vail Marriott Mountain Resort
Executive Chef: Mercer Mohr
Brewmasters:
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Adam Avery, Avery Brewing Co., Boulder, CO

Calibration Dinner Menu

Centre V
Russian River
Flying Dog


2008 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Ocotillo Restaurant,  Vail Marriot Mountain Resort, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef: Mercer Mohr        Guest Chef: Bruce Paton
Brewmasters:
Tomme Arthur, Port Brewing & The Lost Abbey, San Diego, CA
Doug Odell, Odell Brewing Co, Ft. Collins, CO
Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

2008 Calibration Dinner

Blue Tiger Restaurant in Cascade Village, Vail, CO
Executive Chef:  Dario Santelli
Brewmasters:
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Adam Avery, Avery Brewing Co., Boulder, CO

Ocotillo
The Lost Abbey
Port Brewing
Odell Brewing

2007 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Restaurant Kelly Liken,  Vail Village, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef/Owner: Kelly Liken
Brewmasters:
Hildegard Van Ostaden, Brouwerij de Leyerth, West Flanders, Belgium
Brian Dunn, Great Divide Brewing Company, Denver, Colorado
Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Kelly Liken
Urthel
Great Divide


2006 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner

Lord Gore Restaurant, Vail Village, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef, Richard Mason
Brewmasters:
Eric Wallace, Left Hand Brewing Company, Longmont, Colorado
Rob Tod, Allagash Brewing Company, Portland, Maine

Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Lord Gore
Left Hand
Allagash


2005 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Brewmasters’ Dinner
Montauk Seafood Restaurant, Lionshead Village, Vail, Colorado
Executive Chef, Dimitri Souverin
Brewmasters:
Adam Avery, Avery Brewing Company, Boulder, Colorado
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, Delaware

Brewmasters' Dinner Menu

Montauk
Avery
Dogfish


For further endorsement, here’s what Marty Jones said about the 2005 Brewmasters' Dinner in the February/March 2005 issue of Celebrator:

"…about 50 judges, brewers and beer fiends gathered at Montauk Seafood Grill for a Brewmasters’ Dinner. The hosts were boundary-pushing cult hero Sam Calagione (Dogfish Head Brewery) and his Colorado counterpart, Adam Avery (Avery Brewing Company).

The extreme-beer dinner featured 14 muscular, genre-bending beers from Dogfish Head and Avery, along with elevated cuisine from Dimitri Souvorin, Montauk’s chef. Souvorin — conducting his first beer dinner — faced the daunting task of pairing his food with high-gravity beers. Dinner patrons faced the equally daunting task of squaring off with the night’s highly alcoholic beers.

Group
Brewer Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, Delaware speaking

The affair started with guest-mingling and appetizers of calamari, crab cakes and smoked salmon crostinis. These choice nibbles were paired with snifters of Avery’s hop hammer, Hog Heaven, and the company’s winter beer, Old Jubilation. There were also servings of Dogfish’s dreamily aromatic 60 Minute IPA and its heartier sibling, 90 Minute IPA.

The sit-down portion of the meal matched expertly prepared food items with a pair of large beers from Avery and Dogfish Head. A bowl of mussels and clams steamed in saffron-infused cream was partnered with Dogfish’s Raison d’Etre and Avery’s Salvation. A toothy Black Angus filet was served alongside Dogfish’s deceptively strong Olde School barley wine and Avery’s Belgian-inspired heavyweight, Reverend.

The meal ended with a gooey chocolate lava cake and assorted cheeses matched with Dogfish’s portlike elixir, World Wide Stout, and Avery’s imposing Czar Imperial Stout. By dinner’s end, guests had enjoyed their fill, with some passing on finishing their beer portions. The over-the-top beer, fine food and fellowship benefited from tasty repartee from Calagione and Avery, who shared gonzo beer info and beer-blessed anecdotes with their smiling fans."

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