Backpocket Brewing, the craft brewery and taproom at the Iowa River Landing, hopped across the border to bring regional beers to the Corridor on May 24 from 1 to 5 p.m.
The first Border Hop Fest featured breweries and beers from around the Midwest that are not normally available in Iowa.
Headlining the event was be Surly Brewing Company from Brooklyn Center, Minn. One of the most highly-regarded breweries in the country, craft beer enthusiasts from around the Midwest are familiar with Surly's bold beers and aggressive style. RateBeer has named Surly one of the top 15 breweries in the world for several years.
Other breweries included Lucid, Flat Earth and Brau Brothers from Minnesota.
"The Border Hop Fest will give Iowa craft beer enthusiasts a chance to enjoy great beers they would otherwise have to drive several hours to try," says Jake Simmons Backpocket co-owner and brewmaster. "This event will celebrate great beers brewed around the Midwest that Iowans may not have had a chance to enjoy, and the breweries that make them. We hope to give attendees part of the experience of a beer pilgrimage so to speak, without the long journey."
Two other beer fests are coming up:
l Corridor Beer Fest: noon to 7 p.m. June 7, NewBo City Market, Cedar Rapids; Corridorbeerfest.com. Beer tasting and brewmasters on-site from more than 30 national and local breweries. Tickets are $30 in advance and include unlimited samplings.
l Festival Of Iowa Beers: 1 to 5 p.m. Aug. 31, Millstream Brewing Co., Amana; Music, food, craft and home brews, meet the brewers;. Tickets $22 sold in advance only, beginning July 1.