The line for wristbands likely will begin to form at dawn Saturday, and there is talk among fans of camping overnight in the parking lot to assure a prime spot. Already there are Internet negotiations from around the country to barter with those lucky enough to score. The price may be steep: The last time something like this happened, the eBay markup to buy just one was more than 2,500 percent.
Beatles tickets, with John and George risen from the Great Beyond?
No. It’s beer. But not just any beer: It’s the legendary Maple Bacon Coffee Porter from the Funky Buddha Brewery in Oakland Park, which will celebrate its first commercial bottle release with an all-day festival, including live music and food trucks, from 11 a.m. to midnight Saturday at the brewery (1201 NE 38th St.).
The brewery website includes a list of specific rules for the thousands of people expected to show up for a shot at the limited batch of 3,000 22-ounce bottles that will be available.
“It’s not bigger than Jesus, but we want to be prepared,” the brewery’s John Linn says with a laugh.
Maple Bacon Coffee Porter has been available in draft form off and on since Funky Buddha founder and brewmaster Ryan Sentz put the first small batch in bottles at the original Funky Buddha Lounge in Boca Raton in April 2011. That fall, one of the 16-ounce bottles was listed on eBay for $250, Linn says.
At beer zombie headquarters, BeerAdvocate.com, the Maple Bacon Coffee Porter was ranked the No. 2 porter in the world, and the site is littered with effusive praise from Connecticut to California for the breakfasty, maple-scented beer. (Note to vegans: Spices are used to simulate the smoky "bacon" flavor, which reviewers say is almost indistinguishable.)
“One of the most unique beers I have had the pleasure of trying,” homebrew 311 from Illinois posted.
“I drove through a hailstorm just to get the chance to try this, and I'm so glad I did. Worth the money, the hype and the trouble,” Immortale25 of Delaware wrote.
This response put the Funky Buddha name on the national beer map and convinced Sentz it was time to build a stand-alone brewery devoted to his “culinary" beers, Linn says. When the Funky Buddha micro brewery had its grand opening in Oakland Park last June, 2,500 fans were there.
“It’s safe to say there would be no Funky Buddha Brewery if it weren’t for this beer,” Linn says.
Saturday's festival, beginning at 11 a.m., includes music from Snow Leopard (featuring Julius Pastorius), Spred the Dub, Short Straw Pickers and others, plus a phalanx of food trucks, among them the popular Rolling Stove and Pescados Unido.
Maple Bacon Coffee Porter will be available in 22-ounce bottles for $15 per bottle (cash only), limit two per customer, while supplies last. You'll also find many other popular examples of Sentz's hopped-up craft-beer scorcery on tap, including Snow Day, No Crusts, Rice Crispy Treat and Pineapple Jalapeno Hop Gun, to name a few.
For more details, go to FunkyBuddhaBrewery.com.
NO LAS OLAS BLUES
Blues fans can rejoice that the 16th annual Coral Gables Blues Festival, typically a four-day affair, will run 11 days beginning Thursday (Jan. 16). But it comes at a cost: No Las Olas Blues Festival this year.
The organizer of both events, Harald Neuweg, of Fritz and Franz Bierhaus, had targeted Thursday through Jan. 19 for a reprise of his inaugural Las Olas Blues Festival, which debuted under rainy skies last January on the lawn next to the Riverside Hotel. Shortly after his Las Olas Oktoberfest ended on the lawn, Neuweg began booking acts for a 2014 Las Olas Blues Festival. But it turned out the lawn, once home to the popular O’Hara’s blues bar, was committed to another event that weekend, according to Heiko Dobrikow, Riverside Hotel’s general manager.
With no other appealing option, Neuweg added the Las Olas-bound acts to the lineup performing in front of Fritz and Franz Bierhaus in Coral Gables, and extended the festival to Jan. 16-26. The conflict was “unfortunate,” says Dobrikow, who hopes a 2015 Las Olas Blues Festival will happen. “The feedback we had [on last year’s festival] from the local community was very supportive.”
Neuweg is planning to bring the blues back to Fort Lauderdale, as well. “I love Las Olas,” he says.
The inevitable kicker to the story? Dobrikow says the business group that had secured the lawn next weekend subsequently pulled out.