WINTER WARMTH: Say "beer festival" to most anyone, whether they regularly attend beer festivals or not, and an image very often pops into the mind: People in sundresses and baseball caps, milling about some park at high noon on a swelter of a July day. But, of course, fine suds parties take place throughout the year, and even in winter, when a fine brew, hearty and hale, can be a welcome thing. If you're in the camp that the beer festival doesn't always have to be about the baseball cap and the swelter, make for the San Jose Women's Club's Landmark Ballroom on Saturday, Jan. 28. If you do, you'll find that the Winter KraftBrew Beer Fest 2012 will be happening, and loads of lager lovers'll be milling and sipping.
THE BEERS: Belgian Strong Ale from Allagash Brewing Co., Oatmeat Stout from Anderson Valley, and Dogfish's own Pumpkin Ale will be in some of the cups. Food'll be for sale, too, like cocoa-braised beef stew. Now that sounds like most excellent brew food to us. The KraftBrew Beer Fest charges no entry, so hooray for that; it all starts at 3 p.m., and you'll want to pack some cash for eats and drinks. Wait. How did we miss this on the menu? Home fries with porter ketchup. If you see someone hunkered in the corner of her second serving of those, wave hi, because that most likely will be us.