On Saturday, August 10th, the Wharf hosted the second annual "Top of the Hops" beer festival in Orange Beach, AL. Crowds lined the streets waiting for the festivities which began at 4:00 p.m. officially, but we suspect some of the patrons had a head start. Once inside guests of the event were treated to 175 different beers from 52 breweries. The event took place under 4 large tents on the marina lawn.
Fairhope Brewing Company, Blue Pants brewery and Back Forty brewing Company were the in-state breweries featured in the Cask Garden serving unfiltered brews. The Cask Garden was billed as the place where brewers could experiment with unfiltered, small batches and Dan Murphy from Fairhope Brewing Company served a cucumber juice beer that was probably the "hit" of the festival. Murphy described his inspiration as coming from a trip to a local farmers market. When he asked for something in season to help juice his beer. He walked out with a cucumber and the rest, as they say, is history. "That's the beauty of the Cask," Murphy said. "I had no idea what it would taste like until I tapped it, but it worked. The results are even better than even I expected."
Some other unusual items noticed at the event were pretzel necklaces and bracelets, there was even a pretzel hat spotted. Brian Peterson recently moved from Illinois to Daphne to work at Austal USA. Peterson said the hat was worth the burns suffered from his hot glue gun and the time it took to make it.
The event was much larger this year than last and this time next year, hosts and sponsors expect it to grow further. The Wharf is home to a variety of different events including festivals such as the beer fest and the amphitheater draws in big-named musical talent year round. Click the link to view upcoming event info for the Wharf in Orange Beach, AL. You can also view condominium info at the Wharf by clicking this link.