STOW THOSE GOODBYE BLUES: If you're a maven of bespoke brews and the finest of foams, summertime is your time if you live within shouting distance -- or, more accurately, driving distance -- of Marin and Santa Cruz. That's because the hotter stretch is also when the generously sized, highly tap-laden California Beer Festival shows up, bringing with it beermaker after beermaker after beermaker (and all of the beers they make). It's a pretty big to-do, and draws a pretty big crowd, but once it hits the road for Southern California, as it does each August? It's over, at least 'round NorCal, for another year.
FLAVORFUL FOLLOW-UP: But there is one more fest to go, a fest of the most spirited proportions, and while it doesn't take the foamy road, it will likely appeal to many fans of the beer bash, as well as fans of tacos and tequilas. Whoops, that was total tip of the hand right there, as to the nature of the happening (well, that and the fact that "Tequila & Taco" appears up above). The California Beer Festival organizers are staging one final 2014 grub-filled, libation-lively delight for the people above our state's halfway-up line, and it happens in Santa Cruz on Saturday, Aug. 23.
TOP-SHELF TEQUILAS... from Los Tres Tronos and Tequila Alquimia and Ocho Cientos and Mezcal Vago will be in the half-ounce tasting cups, while piquant ingredients folded inside soft tortillas will be plated by Taco Factory, Conscious Creations, and other spicy eat places. As with the California Beer Festival, live tunes complement the sipping and supping. The location for your taco-ing and tequila-ing? San Lorenzo Park in Santa Cruz. Tickets? It's $30 for the Tequila Experience, ten for admission, and you'll want to pocket cash for the people making/selling tacos.