Beer Bloggers & Writers Conference- Coming to Loudoun County, VA!

In just 2 months, on August 10 and 11th the Beer Bloggers and Writers Conference will hold its 9th annual conference, and this year it will be held in Loudoun Virginia! This conference is not only for beer bloggers and writers, it is also for breweries, brewery guilds, Destination Management Organizations, and PR companies. This event provides a forum for industry professionals to meet with writers and bloggers to discuss trends, tourism, and innovations in craft brewing.

Beer tourism is growing fast, and conferences like this are a great way to build awareness for local and regional beers, breweries, and beer trails.

This conference will feature a number of pre and post conference excursions such as a trip to the Guinness Open Gate Brewery & Barrel House in Maryland, and a visit to Dogfish Head Brewing in Delaware, to talk to the brewers, hear about trends, and of course lots of tasting.

At the start of the conference, there will be a Kickoff Party at Farm Brew Live, northern Virginia’s first destination brewery.  Then during the conference attendees will hear about the current state of the craft beer industry, diversity in craft beer, learn about the art of negative feedback, podcasting and Instagram, talk to brewers and brewery owners, and of course beer tasting. They will also hear from Sam Calagione with Dogfish Head Brewery, see a presentation by Devils Backbone Brewing Company, and do more beer tasting. There will also be a reception and dinner at Vanish Farmwoods Brewery where 24 of Loudoun County’s breweries will be present to offer still more tastings of some of their best hand-crafted brews!

Finally, after the conference wraps up, there will be yet another excursion, this time to Richmond, VA, for  a tasting tour of the Richmond Beer Trail!

This conference is going to be incredible! If are a brewery owner, an industry professional, or just want to raise awareness about craft beer in your area, there is no better place to meet with the bloggers and writers who can get the word out.  

I’ll see you there!



Special thanks to the conference sponsors:

Visit Loudoun,the Loudoun Convention & Visitors Association, is going all out to ensure the success of the conference.

The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) represents America’s 3,300 licensed, independent beer distributor operations in every state, congressional district and media market across the country., published by the Brewers Association, a website that supports independently owned breweries and the world of American craft beer.

Devils Backbone Brewing Company, born in the Heartland of Virginia, this craft brewery has created some amazing German and American style craft beers that has become the standard for what a craft beer should be.

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, after 22 years of brewing excellence, is still just as passionate and dedicated their craft as they were on day one, “to bringing off-centered goodness to off-centered people”.

Guinness Open Gate Brewery & Barrel House, which is the first Guinness presence on US soil since 1954 and a beer legend known around the world.

Prince William County, Virginia, close without being too close to Washington DC. Located only 30 miles from DC in northern Virginia, Prince William is known for their parks and trails, Civil War battlefields, amazing craft brews and wines, museums, and a robust arts and culture scene.

Kilfrost is a global leader in safety critical chemistry. They are probably best known for developing a range of Advanced Low Viscosity heat transfer fluids, including ALV Plus, which for the first time gives breweries a fluid that’s highly efficient and non-toxic, as well as cost efficient and environmentally-friendly.

This company will pay you to visit breweries and drink beer

IF YOU’RE A BEER CONNOISSEUR, always taking a “sick day” to catch the newest IPA launch at a brewery three hours away, this may be the side hustle for you. When you become a Secret Hopper, you can actually get paid to visit local breweries and try their beers.

Secret shopping with a hoppy twist. This company will pay you to visit breweries and drink beer appeared first on Matador Network.

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Cumberland Valley Beer Trail pt 5- My Final Stop: Molly Pitcher Brewing

10 E. South Street Carlisle, PA 17013

My final stop on the Cumberland Valley Beer Trail was Molly Pitcher Brewing. Named after the legendary Revolutionary War heroine who brought pitchers of water to colonial soldiers on the battlefield. Molly, who’s real name was Mary Ludwig Hays McCauley, famously jumped in to man a cannon during the Battle of Monmouth, earning the respect and admiration of those soldiers she fought with, and creating the legend of the fearless patriot in a petticoat. 

This place had the feel of a true neighborhood pub. The staff greeted me when I walked in, and asked what I’d like before I sat down. Everyone seemed to know each other, but still made you feel like you were one of them. There was even a young woman there celebrating her last night as a single woman with her maid of honor and bridesmaids. She’s the one wearing the veil in the picture above.

The place was accented with items from colonial America like a tri corner hat, a musket, and tap handles made from flintlock pistols and wooden beer taps. 

Patriot Pale Ale

The Patriot Pale Ale had a bright golden hue  with a fruity and floral aroma and a hint of citrus. The hop bitterness was nicely balanced by the malt with a touch of citrus. Delicious.

The Billy Haze-Jucy IPA had a hazy golden color and had a fruity/citrucy aroma, and a sweet but not too sweet tropical fruit flavor with a light citrus taste. Excellent.

Unfortunately, like all good things my time on the Cumberland Valley Beer Trail finally came to an end.  I had tasted some truly remarkable beer, had some good things to eat, and met some great people, but I was only able to visit a handful of the craft breweries on the trail, and sample only a tiny fraction of the beer. But that just gives me a good reason to come back, and something to look forward to. 

Until next time, may you always have good health, and may your cup never run dry.


Cumberland Valley Beer Trail pt 4- Market Cross Pub and Brewery, and Burd’s Nest Brewing


As I continued my journey along the Cumberland Valley Beer Trail our pizza lunch was beginning to be just a distant memory, so my group head to downtown Carlisle to the Market Cross Pub and Brewery. 

This English style pub has been around for nearly 25 years, and was voted “Simply the Best Local Pub” 4 years in a row from 2014 to 2017. However it didn’t start brewing its own hand crafted beers until 2002.   They brought a 10bbl brewing system  over from England, and use it to produce 12-14 styles a year with 3 or 4 on tap at a time.  In addition to their own craft beer, they also offer a variety of local, regional, and national craft beers, as well as some imports.

In addition to a comprehensive selection of beer, they also have a very impressive food menu with classic pub fare, assorted sandwiches, burgers, and a number of dinner selections such as crab stuffed salmon, prime rib, rack of lamb, and New York Strip. I ordered the New York Strip, and began sampling beer.

They had 3 of their own craft beers on tap, so I started with the Pub Daddy Pale Ale. It had a light amber color and an aroma that reminded me of pines and evergreens. There was a good balance between the hop bitterness and roast malt flavor with notes of evergreen and caramel malt. 

The English Red Ale had a deep red color and thick dense head. It had a very malty, slightly sweet bready aroma and flavor. 

The Dublin Your Luck Irish Stout was my favorite.  The head wasn’t very thick, but it lasted. It had a nice chocolate and coffee smell, and a dark, malty flavor, rich, faintly sweet, with a hint of bitter chocolate.

After finishing my delicious steak and another round of beer, we headed out to our next stop, Burd’s Nest Brewing.

19 N Hanover St. Carlisle, PA 17013

Just a couple of block away from Market Cross, the Burd’s Nest was very open and welcoming. They had 4 of their craft beers on tap, and food being prepared and served by local eatery Spoons Cafe’s  off-site location inside the brewery.

One of the brewery’s owner’s, Dave Hamilton, was still there when we arrived, and was more than happy to talk about the brewery in which he obviously took great pride. They have seven 10 bbl fermenters, which double as serving tanks, and a control system which allows them to set temperatures, and transfer beer from on tank to another at the touch of a button. And while co-owner Josh Hood is responsible for most of the brewing, Dave, an avid home brewer, is not afraid to step in and brew, or just clean tanks when needed. 

Their Cold Infused Citra Pale Ale had a slightly cloudy golden hue, a grapefruit/citrus aroma, and a fruity profile with a light caramel malt character.

This place had a very relaxed and comfortable atmosphere and a staff that was friendly and fairly knowledgeable. This would be a great  place to sit and relax with friends any day of the week, but they are only open Thursday through Saturday.

Next stop, Molly Pitcher Brewing.