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Nineties-era beer ads taught us the perils of "bitter beer face," but there is nothing to fear from the outlandish expressions brought on by the acidic zing of sour beers. In fact, once one becomes acclimated to this age-old and skillfully crafted style of beers, they're likely to flash a "sour-beer smile."

Ranging from light and citrusy to dark, woody, and vinegary, sour beers have taken the craft beer drinking public by storm over the past several years. They've become my personal favorite even though, upon first hearing of them, I turned up my nose and thought, how can that possibly taste good? Like any good craft beer fan, I eventually gave it a whirl and soon found out just how interesting, unique and downright delicious these brews are.

I'd hate for anybody out there to make the same mistake that I did, and so I want to inform the uninitiated and acidically addicted about an opportunity to enjoy a wide variety of sours from all over the world. It's the Best Damn Sour Fest and will take place at Bootlegger at 805 Market Street in the East Village on Saturday, October 22. Why the advance notice? Because tickets ($40 for 10 three-to-four ounce tasters, with additional taster tickets available on site at a reduced price) are going fast and are sure to sell out soon.

The list of breweries whose hard-to-find sours will be available includes locals (Alpine Beer Co. and The Lost Abbey), out-of-town Golden Statesmen (Russian River, Telegraph, and The Bruery), plus innovative operations from the U.S. and the old country (namely, Belgium).

The list of 50-plus beers is the kind that makes even a well-traveled beer enthusiast like me salivate. Tickets are available at the Best Damn Beer Shop (inside Super JR Market at 1036 Seventh Avenue in downtown) or online.


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