My Kind of Beer with Chris Goddard
Summer Beer Festivals
Every season brings a whole whack of new beers from great breweries all over the world. It can be a real challenge keeping up with all of the new releases — not to mention that some are only available for a limited time or direct from the brewery. For those who hate being left out, like me, there are beer festivals. Every festival is a little different so it’s important to find the one that’s best for you. Some offer a party atmosphere while others cater to a more refined audience. Some offer a wide range of beers from macro to microbreweries, while others focus on a more curated beer experience. Me? I like a little of both so I plan to hit all the festivals!
Summer Craft Beer Fest
July 9th, 2015 — Liberty Market Building Galleria, Liberty Village
If you live in Liberty Village then you have no excuse to not come. This area is brimming with craft beer, with more breweries and bars moving in daily it seems. One of the nicest communities to live in is now one of the best to go to for beer. This festival looks beyond Ontario’s borders for some of their breweries and has one of the most diverse selections of beers that you probably won’t see at other festivals.
Toronto Festival of Beer
July 24th–26th, 2015 — Exhibition Place
One of the oldest beer festivals in Canada and also one of the largest. TFOB has really evolved over the years from a somewhat raucous past to something a little more refined (but not pretentious). Sure they have plenty of macro beers to sample but they also have more micro brews than you can shake a stick at and a great selection of food too. Beer classes and cooking demos are part of the regular program along with some rocking bands all day long on the stage. Plan on spending the whole day there but many spend two of three to get through the whole festival. If you are just getting into beer and like a good time this festival is for you.
Hart House Craft Beer Festival
July 30th, 2015 — Hart House Outdoor Quad
This fest is on the more intimate side and has a strong focus on education (complete with a beer and cheese tasting by Master Cicerone Mirella Amato), but that comes with the territory since you are on the U of T campus. Instead of food trucks they have a gourmet BBQ prepared by Chef Marco Tucci. If you don’t like getting bumped into by a boisterous beer fan this may just be the beer fest date night for you.
Roundhouse Craft Beer Festival
August 8th & 9th, 2015 — Roundhouse Park (Steam Whistle Brewing)
A relative newcomer to the circuit, this festival was started by Steam Whistle to celebrate some of Ontario finest beers along with some of Toronto’s best food trucks. This festival runs as smooth as glass and was built to make sure you have a great time. It’s also one of the most accessible festivals as you can get there easily by TTC and Go Transit so leave the car at home. Can’t come this summer? That’s okay — they have a winter festival too!