How to enjoy a Beer Festival


  1. Eat just prior to the event but give yourself time to get the flavor of the food out of your mouth. Continue to seek out food during the event. The food will give you a much-needed buffer between food and alcohol.
  2. Try and drink equal parts water and beer. This will keep you from becoming dehydrated, which will impair your taste.  And the water will cleanse your palate between tastings.
  3. Have a list of brewers and make a plan. Try and match styles, like Belgium, pale ale, wheat  etc…then move to another style. Engage the brewers and learn about their inspiration, creativity and brewing techniques.
  4. IBU (international bitterness units). The higher the IBU, the more bitterness.   Start lower on the scale and work up.  Too much hops at the start will leave you with only the taste of hops for the rest of the day.  Hops are bitter and are used to offset the sweetness of the malt, as well as contributing aromas and flavors.
  5. The event is not a 6-hour kegger. To enjoy the festival and create an impression, take time to taste the beer.  Try and taste the aroma and smell of the beer.  What is its appearance?  What does it feel like in your mouth?  Is there texture?   Maybe sample the beer in two tastes. Beer festivals celebrate local and regional craft beers.  This is your opportunity to try new flavors and explore many options.
  6. Take notes
  7. Have a designated driver