Thursday, April 28, 2016

West Virginia Bites & Brews 2016

WV Bites & Brews


This past weekend saw another great fundraiser: West Virginia Bites & Brews 2016. The Children's Discovery Museum of West Virginia, which is now known as SPARK Imagination and Science Center, held the food and beer event on Saturday, April 23 from 5-9 p.m. at the WV National Guard Readiness Center.

WV Bites & Brews
The mission of the Children’s Discovery Museum of West Virginia is "to inspire children and their grown-ups to explore, discover, and grow together through exceptional learning experiences and interactive play." While I haven't had a chance to visit -- and have no kids to which this caters -- I think it's great to have a place where parents and caregivers can participate in their children's learning experience. The museum operates on admission, memberships, donations, fundraisers, grants and sponsorships. So, the tasty bites and brews event served to raise money for the organization.

WV Bites & BrewsTickets for the event were $30 for "bites" only or $40 for "bites" and "brews." If you purchased before April 4, there was a $5 discount. Not too shabby! Plus an 80s/90s cover band "Cover Me Badd." Unfortunately, I'm pretty stupid, and they sold out before I had a chance to purchase one. They sold 235 tickets! So, I got in touch with the organizers to let them know I wanted to write about this first-time event, and they comped me a media pass! Lucky!

WV Bites & Brews
Cupcakes from Alayna's Sweet Treats
So, for the food, there were Hash Browns & New Grounds, Jersey's Subs, Russ's Ribs, and Hometown Hot Dogs. Each had a sample to try, as well as full items to purchase. Dessert vendors included Almost Heaven Cupcakes, Apple Annie's and Alayna's Sweet Treats. Microbreweries included Chestnut Brew Works, Morgantown Brewing Company, Big Timber Brewing Company, and Northern Eagle Distributing with Charleston Brewing Company and Bridge Brew Works beer - which attendees received a souvenir mug in which to drink all the delicious brews.

Food trucks were stationed outside, which was cool, and the desserts and brews were inside.

WV Bites & BrewsHash Browns & New Grounds gave out samples of their gnocchi macaroni & cheese, which is one of my favorite things in the world. The added spice of the grilled pepperoni pulls it all together. Plus, I got to chat with Cody a little bit about the new restaurant he's opening. So excited to see the cool, crazy, awesome, weird stuff he's doing soon!

WV Bites & BrewsJersey's Subs gave out samples of their cheesesteak sandwiches - tasty, as always. And, definitely good for the kinda cool, sunny day outside.

WV Bites & BrewsRuss's Ribs handed out samples of a rib and cornbread. At first, I was going to use my fork so I didn't look like a barbarian, but these were so tender, it wasn't even needed.

WV Bites & BrewsHometown Hot Dogs dished out half a hotdog with any of the fixins you would like! I went for chili, mustard and onions, which hit the spot.

WV Bites & BrewsAlayna's Sweet Treats handed out these chocolate cupcakes, which, what I think I heard her say, was that it was her grandma's chocolate recipe from Germany. The band was loud, so it was tough to tell. But, this girl, who is 14 years old, is incredible. She makes all these delicious cupcakes (look at the photo at the top for full size ones to purchase), and they're beautiful, too! Just super cool.

WV Bites & BrewsAlmost Heaven Cupcakes made strawberry shortcake cupcakes, which were very tasty, as well. And, they just look super cute!

WV Bites & BrewsApple Annie's also ended up making cupcakes - oreo ones! Another mini cupcake that was quite tasty.

For the beers, there was:

Morgantown Brewing Company - Brookside Farmhouse Saison
Chestnut Brew Works - Halleck Pale Ale & Class II Wheatwater
Big Timber Brewing - Sluice Dry Stout & Bit Double IPA
Northern Eagle Distributing providing: Charleston Brewing - The Raj and  Bridge Brew Works - Coffee Stout

WINNERS:

Best Food Truck: Hash Browns & New Grounds
Best Dessert: Alayna's Sweet Treats
Best Brew: Big Timber Brewing

Lots of good prizes were also up for silent auction and raffles; I ended up snagging a Blenko water pitcher for $40! Great event, with great prizes, and I hope they raised enough money to make this an annual event! If so, I'll see you next year!