This story is adapted from a column
which originally appeared in
Mid-Atlantic Brewing News.

A Maibock Named George

by Jack Curtin

You're sitting at the bar minding your own business and a guy walks behind you carrying a goat, you gotta figure you've had one too many or else something strange is going on, right? Fortunately it was the latter case on a blistering hot Sunday afternoon in early May at Collegeville's New Road Brew House.

George, a black haired speedster unaccustomed to public adulation, was being hauled to the back bar stage area to be cheered as the winner of the goat race which served as the centerpiece of the brewpub's newly inaugurated Annual Bock Festival.

With head brewer Brian O'Reilly acting as ringmaster and introducing the competitors ("Princess is a mother of two from Pottstown and enjoys tin cans"), a passel of goats, small and large, horned or bearded or sometimes both, sprinted around a short course in the parking area, dragging their owners behind.

George, owned by Matt Hoffman, burst across the finish line, pulled free of his leash and hurled himself into the safety of his trailer, from whence he had to be dragged kicking and fighting and carried to the winner's circle upstairs. Once there, he immediately relieved himself on the floor. Like I said, unaccustomed to public adulation.

Hoffman's employer is Black's Livestock Inc, of Skippack, the company which hauls away New Road's spent grain, so George actually prepared for his triumph by eating the very grain which produced his namesake brew. "He's been in serious training since early yesterday afternoon," said a proud Hoffman.

The goatly reward? New Road's just-released Maibock was named in George's honor. And he and his owner also received a sparkling gold medal, which they will presumably wear on alternate days, and Hoffman also was presented with a $75 gift certificate at the bar.

Then, as the victorious goat looked on, the first keg of George Maibock was ceremoniously tapped while the Das Immergrun Trio of Mountville, PA led the assemblage in song and a dance group from Philadelphia, G. T. R. Ver. Almrausch, well, danced. You had to be there.

The Maibock? Delicious, which is what we've come to expect from O'Reilly. I also had a couple of pints of his earlier-released Slacker Bock, already a personal favorite, and am looking forward to sampling the Ice Bock which complete's New Road's spring triumverate on my next visit.

Copyright (c) 2000 Jack Curtin

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