[FESTIVALS&FOODIES] I traded eggnog for winter ales long ago. Potent, rich and generous on the booze, they're a better allocation of calories for the professional eater. Unfortunately (like eggnog), they vanish with the arrival of cherry blossoms, and that's the best single reason to attend the Holiday Ale Festival, held under a big tent this weekend in the middle of Pioneer Courthouse Square.
Steve's Cheese's proprietor Steve Jones won't be selling his curds and whey at the Ale Fest, but the Portland cheese-slinger doesn't hesitate to extol the merits of what he calls his favorite winter beverage. Tucked into a back corner of Northwest Portland's Square Deal Wines, Jones rightly calls beer "bread in a bottle." And what goes better with bread than cheese? He reminds me that cows get fat noshing the grains that become beer. So it's all the same—whether poured from the keg or yanked from the teat.
Here are some of our favorite seasonal ales (along with cheese recommendations for hungry drinkers). You can try some of them at the Holiday Ale Fest, and you can buy all of them at beer emporium Belmont Station (4500 SE Stark St., 232-8538) . Psst: Steve's Cheese is located at 2321 NW Thurman St., 222-6014.
Click on the image of each beer below to find out more.
WEDNESDAY NOV. 28
[MUSIC] DAMO SUZUKI’S NETWORK
Legendary Can vocalist Damo Suzuki is an improvisational Jedi master—indeed, he is a bit Yoda-esque in appearance these days. And with his simpatico Network, one can easily imagine him as Can first found him, shouting for spare change outside a German cafe.
FRIDAY NOV. 30
[MOVIE] FOR THE BIBLE TELLS ME SO
The documentary that taught Byron Beck why Jesus doesn't like gay-bashers opens for a weeklong run. Take that, Leviticus!
SATURDAY DEC. 1
[OUTDOORS] GRAND SLAM, BABY!
Did you know Stan Smith is alive? The tennis legend (and shoe inspiration) is not only still kicking it, but he'll be making a rare appearance, in honor of the Davis Cup, at the Adidas Originals store. To celebrate, Adidas commissioned a few local artists to create work in honor of Stan!
The Dodgeball Project's massive six-on-six coed dodgeball tournament/battle royale goes down in Beaverton this Saturday and Sunday.
SUNDAY DEC. 2
[HOLIDAY] FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS
It's that marathon of caroling madness, that chill-inducing display of several thousand frosty little lights, that cockles-of-the-heart-warming tradition that is the Grotto's Festival of Lights. A tip: Go drunk.
MONDAY DEC. 3
Just imagine if girls weren't weirded out by our boners and stuff, and just, like, wanted to see them. That's the world I one day want to live in. Today is that one day. Today is the day
is released on DVD.
TUESDAY DEC. 4
[MUSIC] TEGAN AND SARA
When it comes to Canadian electro-pop duo Tegan and Sara, what's not to love? They're adorable twin sisters and they write some of the catchiest melodies—sung in dual voices, of course—this side of, well, anywhere.
Holiday Ale Festival, Pioneer Courthouse Square, 701 SW 6th Ave. 11 am-10 pm Thursday-Saturday, Nov. 29-Dec. 1; 11 am-6 pm Sunday, Dec. 2. Free admission, but a $5 mug is required to drink. $1 per beer taste. 21+. Visit holidayale.com for more info.