Sunday recap and today’s Memphis Beer Week events happening Downtown

Rajun Cajun Crawfish Fest yesterday was a success. This is the second year they’ve expanded it to include Riverside Drive. It’s twice the size of what it was before and there were enough people to fill it up.

It’s funny… there was plenty of entertainment, with bands, crawfish races, and other events. What I found most entertaining, though, was leaning against the railing on Riverside Drive and watching people try to park on the cobblestones. At least 10 cars were completely blocked in thanks to other people’s stupid parking decisions. Some cars had only a few inches of room to get out between other cars, and had to back up and try again many, many times. One truck started spinning its wheels on the cobblestones and had to be pulled out by a larger truck. Many of the people were drinking beer as they attempted to navigate their cars through that mess. I was sure we were going to see a car go in the river, but it didn’t happen during the hour or so I spent watching.

Two mallard ducks, males with the green heads and ringed necks, were swimming nearby. I watched a grown man pick up a big piece of wood, probably a foot by 2 inches by one inch, and throw it at the ducks. Luckily they saw it and flew away just in time. Seriously? I understand hunting season to control the population, but apart from that, why would anyone want to hurt ducks?

The crawfish were all right but not the best I’ve had this year. Mudbugs in March’s crawfish were spicier. Then again, I ate fairly early in the afternoon and perhaps Rajun Cajun’s crawfish got spicier as later batches were cooked.

There was a line of porta-potties on the Wagner side of the festival, but restroom facilities seemed a little inadequate on the Riverside side. At one point I counted 24 people lined up for 2 portable restrooms.

Overall, though, great festival. Lots of vendors, lots of food trucks, lots of money raised for Porter-Leath.

Good day otherwise as well. The BBQ team picked up a new member, someone I’m thrilled to add. The Moody Ques are so strong and diverse this year. I’ve been hearing about the menus our pitmaster and his sous chefs are dreaming up, and they sound wonderful. I’m not going to promise a trophy because the difference between 1st and 20th is so miniscule by judging standards… but I am fairly certain the team members are going to have a fun year and many new friendships will be formed.

After brief stops at the Flying Saucer and Silly Goose, both of which got too crowded, I ended up on the patio at the Blind Bear with some of my poker buddies. It was a pleasure to hang out and drink beer with them apart from the table. By the time poker started at 6:30 I was worn out and tired. I knew I wouldn’t do well, and didn’t, unusual for the Blind Bear’s game where I almost always make the final table. I wrapped up the evening at Bardog to get food to go, where an off-duty bartender from another bar told me I was one of her favorite customers. That made me feel good and ended the day on a high note.

There are four Memphis Beer Week events going on tonight. At 7 PM Local will tap Red Brick Brewing’s The Lost Years keg. This will also happen at their Midtown location.

Also at 7, there will be a New Belgium and Yazoo beer dinner at the Downtown Central BBQ. Try how beers pair with Central’s famous ‘que. Beer dinners usually have limited seating, so if you’re interested in attending, it’s best to call the restaurant and make a reservation.

At 7:30, the Flying Saucer will have a Stone Brewery tasting, with a flight of Pale Ale, Cali-Belgie, Vertical Epic ’12, Sublimely Self Righteous, and Double Bastard for $10. This will be a seated event in the front room, and reps will be on hand to talk about the beers.

At 9, Aldo’s Pizza Pies will tap the sour that is a collaboration between the New Belgium and Yazoo breweries.

That’ll do it for now… before-work posts are unusual but I got out of bed early this morning. Tonight I will probably skip the Silly Goose’s poker game in favor of the Grizzlies watch party next door at the Saucer. Off to work. I hope the drivers on 240 south aren’t as stupid as the ones that parked on the cobblestones yesterday.