Beginner’s Guide to Pittsburgh Craft Brew Week

A guide to PCBW for local-brewery newbies.




 

As a 21-year-old college student, I won’t pretend to be a beer expert (unlike most of my contemporaries). My palate is pretty limited and the chief factor determining my drink of choice is price.

But I have to admit that the upcoming Pittsburgh Craft Beer Week (PCBW) intrigues me. I may not have a favorite IPA or know what makes the perfect brew — but after hearing about the event, I wanted to tap into beer subculture in preparation for PCBW. The rabbit hole must go pretty deep; a look at Wikipedia exposed me to zythology, the formal study of beer.

During PCBW — ten days of craft-brew celebration — there are tons of events for beer connoisseurs but also some interesting experiences if you’re new to beer culture. Below is a newbie’s guide to some gems among this year’s 42 featured events. If you’re not already an expert planning on attending, here are the festivities you should consider checking out to get a taste of life as a Pittsburgh beerhead.

“Pancake Apocalypse”
10 a.m.-2 p.m., April 23, Caliente Pizza & Draft House Mt. Lebanon
“All you can eat pancakes.” Few can resist the allure of those words. But Caliente is offering a little something extra during PCBW.

While enjoying Caliente’s unlimited supply of hotcakes, taste their collection of breakfast beers, (a subcategory which, prior to this writing, I had no idea existed). Apparently brews like Founders KBS and Weyerbacher's Sunday Morning Stout are socially acceptable while the sun is still rising.

“Between Two Fermenters: Collaboration” Panel Discussion
7-9 p.m., April 25, East End Brewing
If you want to discover what beer culture is all about, there’s no better way than to listen to a talk between leaders in the field. This panel discussion will be addressing the artistic side of brewery, and how two beer makers collaborate to build a different, distinct concoction.

Panelists include Scott Smith of East End Brewing, Al Kominski of Pizza Boy Brewing and Caroline Moore, author of “Punk Rock Entrepreneur.”

Plus, this talk is monitored by our very own food critic Hal B. Klein. Believe me, Hal’s a smart guy. Unlike me, he knows what he’s talking about when it comes to beer.

“Battle of the Breweries”
6-9 p.m., April 27, Pig Iron Public House
If you’re interested in broadening your palate, this is a great way to taste the best of the best. Breweries submit their proudest craft offering and a one-off wildcard brew in a taste test to crown the year’s best beer.

If nothing else, you’ll be able to add voting in the 2017 PCBW Best Beer competition to your portfolio when applying for your eventual licensure as a certified beer sommelier.

“Unofficial Sendoff of PCBW 2017”
4-11:30 p.m., April 30, Caliente Pizza & Draft House Bloomfield
Say goodbye to Pittsburgh Craft Beer Week in style by heading to the unofficial send-off party at Caliente’s in Bloomfield. There’ll be 24 unique beers to try out, and by the end of the week, you may even be able to match wits with a few beer nuts.
 

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More From The 412

5 Things You Need to Know About Open StreetsPGH

5 Things You Need to Know About Open StreetsPGH

Sunday's event will transform more than 3 miles of city streets into a motor-vehicle-free festival area.
Vintage Photos of Pittsburgh’s First Snow Plows

Vintage Photos of Pittsburgh’s First Snow Plows

Plows were attached to asphalt trucks, but most of the snow was still removed the hard way: with shovels.
Remembering John E. Murray Jr.

Remembering John E. Murray Jr.

The former Duquesne University president died Wednesday of a heart attack at age 82.
President Obama Coming to Pittsburgh to Address VFW Convention

President Obama Coming to Pittsburgh to Address VFW Convention

The convention opens Saturday at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Top Ten Things to Do in Pittsburgh in May

Top Ten Things to Do in Pittsburgh in May

This month's best bets in the ’Burgh.
Best Doctors in Pittsburgh 2017

Best Doctors in Pittsburgh 2017

Pittsburgh’s medical lifesavers rated by their peers, including anesthesiologists, cardiologists, dermatologists, neurologists, ophthalmologists, pediatricians, psychiatrists, surgeons, urologists & many more.
Health Care in Pittsburgh that Goes Beyond the Office

Health Care in Pittsburgh that Goes Beyond the Office

Innovations in Postpartum Depression Treatment, First-Aid Training and Food Security.
Restaurant Review: DiAnoia's Eatery Bridges the Gap

Restaurant Review: DiAnoia's Eatery Bridges the Gap

With a little work, the Strip District restaurant could become a Pittsburgh classic.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

On the Blogs


Why Hotel Rates are Dropping in Downtown Pittsburgh

Why Hotel Rates are Dropping in Downtown Pittsburgh

Rents for Downtown apartments also are declining.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Scratch Food & Beverage Has a New Executive Chef

Scratch Food & Beverage Has a New Executive Chef

Brandon Blumenfeld introduces an American gastropub menu at the Troy Hill bar.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
Five Inexpensive But Memorable Date Spots in Pittsburgh

Five Inexpensive But Memorable Date Spots in Pittsburgh

These spots are tailored for couples who are looking for a simple, chill night out on Valentine’s Day (or any other day). If your significant other isn’t the type to be wooed by expensive wines and chocolates, this is the list for you.

Comments


Five Essential May Events

Five Essential May Events

Comics (the kind on paper), comics (the kind with microphones), cats and more upcoming delights.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
‘Use Him Like ‘Troy Polamalu’ – Steelers Should Jump on This Pick

‘Use Him Like ‘Troy Polamalu’ – Steelers Should Jump on This Pick

If Michigan’s Jabrill Peppers is still available, the Pittsburgh Steelers would be wise to make him their first-round pick in the NFL draft.

Comments


Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
Pittsburgh on a Plate

Pittsburgh on a Plate

The way to a beer lover’s heart is mapped out on notNeutral’s plate, which highlights Pittsburgh breweries (and other points of interest) across the city.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
Sink Into a Trippy High School at Row House Cinema

Sink Into a Trippy High School at Row House Cinema

The Pittsburgh premiere of offbeat cartoon "My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea" is the local film event of the week.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Beautiful Blooms: Twists on the Traditional Bouquet

Beautiful Blooms: Twists on the Traditional Bouquet

You’ll definitely want the story behind these stunning wedding flowers.

Comments


Weekly inspiration for your home from the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine
Rare Plants, Accessories, Up for Grabs at 2017 Garden Marketplace

Rare Plants, Accessories, Up for Grabs at 2017 Garden Marketplace

Hosted by the Penn State Master Gardeners, the free event, which includes the local daffodil society’s annual show, features exclusive and hard-to-find flowers, shrubs, fruit and vegetable plants and other garden accessories from a variety of vendors.

Comments


The hottest topics in higher education
A-Rod to Talk Baseball and Steroids at Slippery Rock

A-Rod to Talk Baseball and Steroids at Slippery Rock

Considered one of the greatest baseball players of all time, Alex Rodriguez also is one of the league's more controversial stars.

Comments