I say this without hyperbole, New Belgium Brewing‘s Lauren Salazar may be one of the nicest people in all of brewing.  That’s a pretty big compliment when you realize just how nice most people in the brewing industry are.  Lauren’s job of Sensory Specialist has her as the ears, eyes, nose, and mouth of New Belgium.

But, the coolest part of her job is that she’s the primary person to to do New Belgium’s barrel-aged blending.  She gets to taste all of the sour/funky beers coming out of the New Belgium and blend them into things like La Folie or the more recent Le Terroir.

Well, she’s coming to town and she wants to meet all of you.  Here’s a list of events she’ll be attending next week:

Wednesday May 4th:
New Belgium Night at International Tap House Soulard at 8pm. The highlight of brewery nights is usually the beer and we’ll have a couple of great New Belgium Beers to choose from. However for this event it’s probably equally important to point out who will be in attendance. So who will be there? Non other than Lauren Salazar the sensory specialist and the person in charge of New Belgium’s sour and aging program. This is a great chance to “chat up” someone with a wealth of knowledge and experience. Oh, and all New Belgium beers will $1 off!

Thursday, May 5th:
Lips of Faith Beer Dinner at Dressel’s…starts at 7pm. All interested can call Dressel’s and make a reservation (314) 361-1060. The dinner will feature Vrienden, Le Terroir, Sahti and Transatlantique Kriek. Menu will be presented by Sous Chef Mike Miller. Dinner starts at 7pm in the Pub Above at Dressel’s. Cost is $50 per seat plus tax and gratuity.

Friday, May 6th:
New Belgium Love Beer Tasting at Bridge…starts at 9pm. We will be pouring three different New Belgium Love beers. 1) Felix (our lighter light-colored sour beer) aged in a peach whiskey barrel, 2) Oscar (our heavier dark-colored sour beer) aged in a blackberry whiskey barrel (this is supposed to be out of this world), and 3) an Oscar/Felix blend barrel aged in an apple whiskey barrel. All the whiskey barrels come from Leopold Brothers Distillery in Denver, CO (http://www.leopoldbros.com/Whiskies.html).

Saturday, May 7th:
Microfest…Lauren will be leading two separate seminars that day about Sour Beers (history of sour beer in Europe, US, and New Belgium’s Sour Beer program). FYI…we just purchased some new wood foeders from France which will increase our wood aged beer capacity by leaps and bounds. This purchase will make New Belgium’s Wood Beer cellar the largest in the United States. Pretty cool.

A bunch of great events next week for you to meet Lauren and tell her what you think of some of these great wood-aged beers that New Belgium’s been putting out.