Ultimate Guide to CT Summer Beer Fests and Events — 2015

18 Jun

Summer is just around the corner (6/21) and we want to make sure that you soak up every last drop of beer, so we’ve put together the ultimate guide for summer beer fests and hop-heavy events here in Connecticut. As the events pass, we’ll shift them to the bottom so that you don’t have to scroll as much. Also, if you have anything to add on here, please let us know by replying or sending us an e-mail. Cheers!


Craft Brew Races + Brew Festival

Date: 8/1 from 12-4

Location: Edgewood Park at the corner of West Rock Avenue and Whalley Ave in New Haven

Cost: $53.74 for the 5k and Brew Festival; $43.19 for just the Brew Festival; $16.82 for DD

Why you should go: Look, we know you like drinking, so you just might need to work off some of that beer belly with a 5k run! When you cross that line (whether you walked or ran), you’ll get a medal, a pat on the back, and your own Craft Brew Races commemorative event glass that you can use to rehydrate with some brewskis. And, thank God, they’ll have food at the finish line too, so chow down on Bounty Burger, Get Your Irish On, Cowabunga, and Fryborg.

Breweries rep’d: 30+ breweries including Charter Oak, Beer’d, Kent Falls, Overshores, Allagash, No Worries Brewing, Stony Creek, Stone, Powder Hollow, NEBCo, Stubborn Beauty, Pioneer, Relic, Black Hog, Broad Brook, Troegs, Half Full, Cottrell, Long Ireland, Hooker, Grey Sail, Sierra Nevada, and more.

Charity tie-in: Westville Village Renaissance Alliance

Eli Cannon’s Charity Beer Fest

Date: 8/3 from 5-9 (VIPs enter at 4:30)

Location: Eli Cannon’s Tap Room @ 695 Main Street in Middletown

Cost: $37.92 (VIP Sold Out!)

Why you should go: There will be over 60 breweries represented, live music, various vendors, and food trucks including Whey Station, Ted’s Steamed Cheeseburgers, Bear’s Smokehouse, and NoRA Cupcake Company. You’ll also get a customized Eli Cannon’s tasting glass!

Breweries rep’d: 60+ including Foolproof, Shebeen, Thimble Island, Willimantic, Oskar blues, Stone, Olde Burnside, Finch’s, and Baxter.

Charity tie-in: Middlesex Coaltion on Housing and Homelessness

A Hot & “Sour” Summer 2: Acidic Adventures

Date: 8/15 from 12-7

Location: OEC Brewing @ 7 Fox Hollow Road in Oxford

Cost: TBD

Why you should go: OEC will not only be presenting their killer sour beers that they have become known for, but they’ll also be serving up sour beer from across the world. Pucker up and get ready.

Breweries rep’d: OEC Brewing and various other sours from across the world.

Shore 2 the Pour Beach Run

Date: 8/22 from 8:30-?

Location: Short Beach Park and Two Roads Brewing in Stratford

Cost: $35

Why you should go: There’s nothing quite as rewarding as conquering a challenging run then drinking afterwards. And while this run won’t be too long (3 miles), it’ll definitely be a challenge because 3/4 of the race will be on sand or grass. But, you’ll hit the sweet spot, er Honeyspot, when you get to the finish and start drinking some brews. 

Breweries rep’d: Two Roads

Charity tie-in: Audubon Connecticut @ Stratford Point

ShakesBeer Festival

Date: 8/22 from 1-7 for VIP and 2-7 for GA

Location: American Shakespeare Theatre @ 1860 Elm Street in Stratford

Cost: $60 for VIP or $40 for GA

Why you should go: Because it’s an awesome name and because beer. Oh, and there will be plenty from CT and across the Northeast! Adding to the excitement, there will be lots of rare brews on tap including some speciality casks being brewed just for this night including one from Two Roads. Oh, and VIPs get to try a few more speciality casks, so the VIP tix are worth it! To sweeten the pot, you can purchase some iambic pentameter inducing food from Vazzy’s Brick Oven Pizza, High on the Hog, The Spud Stud, Lobstercraft, and Zack’s Frozen Yogurt.

Breweries rep’d: Two Roads, Sam Adams, NEBCo, Charter Oak, Otter Creek, Brooklyn, Dogfish Head, Cisco, Shebeen, Long Trail, Clown Shoes, Back East, Foolproof, Half Full, Sixpoint, Black Hog, Ommegang, and more.

Charity tie-in: Tix help to fund the revival of the American Shakespeare Theatre!

Secret Stash Beer Bash

Date: 8/29 from 5-8

Location: Goodwin College @ 1 Riverside Drive in East Hartford

Cost: $42.99 for GA; $16.74 for DD; $105.99 for Pilsner Sponsor

Why you should go: Not only will you be helping to fund money for Goodwin College scholarships, you’ll also get to taste one-of-a-kind brews for over 20 CT breweries. Why so unique? Well, Onyx Moonshine sent them their Secret Stash whiskey barrels and the breweries will be making their own beer right inside. You taste, you vote! Plus, you’ll get some tastes from local restaurants and will also be able to purchase some food from local food trucks.

Breweries rep’d: Back East Brewing Company
Black Hog, Broad Brook,Bru Rm at Bar, Charter Oak, City Steam, DuVig, Half Full, Hooker,
Firefly Hollow, Outer Light, Overshores, Powder Hollow, Relic, Shebeen, Southport Brewing Company, Stony Creek, Stubborn Beauty, Thimble Island, Willimantic Brewing

Charity tie-in: Goodwin College Scholarships

Hops for Hope Brewfest

Date: 8/30 from 12-1 for Early Birds (sold out) or 1-4 for GA

Location: The Quartette Club @ 225 Wooster Street in New Britain

Cost: $45

Why you should go: It’s always nice to go to a beer fest that has a heart and this one definitely does! What we also love about this brand new fest is the quality breweries they nailed down. Beer’d, Lasting Brass, Steady Habit, and Kent Falls? All in the same place. Hell yes. Smokin’ with Chris and Whey Station will also be on hand to provide your nomming needs.

Breweries rep’d: NEBCo, Beer’d, Steady Habit, Lasting Brass, Captain Lawrence, Willimantic, Firefly Hollow, Kent Falls, Back East, Relic, Thomas Hooker, Overshores, Stony Creek, Black Hog, Grey Sail, Stubborn Beauty, Long Trail, City Steam, Broad Brook, Two Roads and more.

Charity tie-in: Smith-Magenis Syndrome Research Foundation

Beer Fest & Pig Roast

Pulled pork at Dinosaur Bar-b-que StamfordDate: 8/30 from 1-6

Location: Harugari German American Club @ 66 Highland Street in West Haven

Cost: $5 entrance; free for under 18

Why you should go: Slow roasted pork, German food, and German beer. But, if that ain’t enough, there will be live music from The Adlers along with dancing from The Harugari Schuhplattlers.

Breweries rep’d: Various German brews.


Brass City Brew Fest

Date: 9/12 from 1-5 for GA and from 12-1 with a Preview ticket

Location: Library Park @ 267 Grand Street in Waterbury

Cost: $30 for GA; $10 for a Preview ticket; $10 for Belgian and International tent

Why you should go: This is probably the most epic beer fest of them all with over 125 breweries in attendance with more than 275 brews in total for sampling. Holy crap, people. That’s insane! In addition to all that sampling (no doubt you’ll be busy doing that), you can check out free seminars, listen to some bands, and munch on some food.

Breweries rep’d: TBD, but will be epic.

Charity tie-in: Main Street Waterbury

America on Tap 2015

Date: 9/12 from 3-6 for GA or 2-6 for VIP

Location: Ives Concert Park @ 43 Lake Avenue Extension in Danbury

Cost: $35 for GA; VIP for $55 (you get access to rare beers)

Why you should go: We went last year and we had a great time, so we’re excited to see what American on Tap has . . . er . . . on tap this year! Right now, they are set to have over 100 brews from over 50 different American craft breweries. In addition, there will be a silent disco which will be pretty freaking amusing with all the tipsy people as well as some live music. Plus, there will be food from The Spot, Northern Smoke BBQ, Rita’s Italian Ice, The Cookhouse, Bull and Barrel Brew Pub, Mima’s Meatballs, and Hog Wild BBQ as well as fun stuff to purchase and check out from Buttheads Tobacco Emporium, Ireland on the Road, Danbury Tattoo, and more.

Breweries rep’d: The list should be released sometime in July.

Get Lei’d Charity Pub Crawl

Date: 9/19 from 1-10 pm

Location: West Hartford, details TBD

Cost: $22.09

Why you should go: The Craft Beer Enthusiast Union is an awesome group on Facebook that has grown from its Connecticut roots to expand into other states. And, Jeff Roberts is organizing a pub crawl that will go down in the books as purely awesome. Jeff has picked out some great spots, bars will have specials for attendees, and he promises that everyone will get lei’d! So, make sure to throw on your Hawaiian shirts and grass skirts then hit up the mean streets of West Hartford with some great people.

Breweries rep’d: whatever’s at the pubs!

Charity tie-in: CT Children’s Hospital

3rd Annual Ok2berfest from Two Roads

two roads logoDate: 9/19 and 9/20 from 12-6:30

Location: Two Roads Brewery in Stratford

Cost: $20 for either day or $35 for both days. 

Why you should go: Two Roads does it right when it comes to Ok2berfest! Entry gets you a stein made just for the event and one free beer. If you buy the weekend pass, you’ll get two steins and two free drinks. After that, beer costs just $5, but remember that it’s cash only. And, you’ll get hungry, no doubt, so check out some of the many food trucks that they’ll have available. And, of course you’ll need to start to sing along to some music, so they’ve got you covered with plenty of live bands on both days. We definitely recommend this one, as we’ve been there for both years and we’ve had a great time.

Breweries rep’d: Two Roads will have their Hef, Pils, Road Jam, Marzen, and Fester pouring. 

Oktoberfest @ Harugari German American Club

Date: 9/20 from 1-6

Location: Harugari German American Club @ 66 Highland Street in West Haven

Cost: $5

Why you should go: Brats, bier, potato pancakes=happy times. In addition, there will be live music from Bernie’s Orchestra and The Harugari Schuhplattlers will be back to dance up a storm.

Breweries rep’d: Various German breweries.


Past Beer Fests

Half Full Brewery Hop Skip & a Run 5K & Beer Festival

Date: 6/20 from 10:30-2:30

Location: Waterfront (17 Harbor Point Rd.) @ Harbor Point Stamford

Cost: $40.03 for 5k, t-shirt, festival, and 1 free beer; $34.75 for under 21 including t-shirt and festival; $16.82 for festival entry and 1 free beer.

Why you should go: Half Full is hosting their second annual 5k and it’s like none other that you’ve probably ever run. At times you’ll hop, at times you’ll skip, and at other times maybe you’ll run . . . or walk: hey, no one is judging! After the 5k, head back where you started for some cold and refreshing Half Full brews and pick up some food from The Brunch Box and Christophe’s Crepes.

Breweries rep’d: Half Full

Charity tie-in: Achilles International

Ski Sundown Summer Brewfest

Date: 6/20 from 4-8

Location: Ski Sundown @ 126 Ratlum Road in New Hartford

Cost: $30 in advance; $35 at the door; $20 for DD (includes water and soda)

Why you should go: The Ski Sundown Summer Brewfest is one of the best festivals that you’ll attend all year long. This one shines because of its heavy focus on CT breweries. There will be over 30 breweries on hand and, chances are, that you haven’t had a good deal of them, so you’ll want to come out and explore. Also, there will be live music from Uncle Polly & The Family Jam and plenty of good food from Prime Meats and KC Dubliner.

Breweries rep’d: Nearly all are CT breweries including Back East, Black Hog, Broad Brook, City Steam, DuVig, Firefly Hollow, Half Full, Kent Falls, Overshores, Relic, Stubborn Beauty, Thimble Island, Thomas Hooker, Two Roads and more!

Charity tie-in: Connecticut Brewers Guild

Brew with a View 

Date: 6/20 from 3-5

Location: Community Health Center roof @ 675 Main Street in Middletown

Cost: $15 in advance; $20 at the door (anyone who attended the March event and brings their tasting cups will get $5 back!)

Why you should go: This is one of the most anticipated events of the year, beer-wise, so you’ll want to make sure that you come on down. There will be a nice amount of homebrewed beer that you get to taste and ultimately vote on. While you’re sipping on the homebrews, jam out with your kilt out with the Middletown PBA Bagpipe Band and chill with some jazz from Clay Selmont

Breweries rep’d: CT Homebrew!

Charity tie-in: North End Action Team

Veracious Brewing Grand Opening Party

Date: 6/20 from 5:30-8

Location: Veracious Brewing @ 246 Main Street in Monroe

Cost: $20 in advance; $25 at the door

Why you should go: Veracious Brewing is CT’s newest brewery and you need to check that out, right? As if that wasn’t enough reason to go, listen to this: you get a tour, a pint/a flight of four brews, and your own unlimited supply of pizza and fried dough from Vazzy’s Pizza Pie Wagon. Oh hell yes.

Breweries rep’d: Veracious Brewing

Two Roads Road Jam Fest

Date: 6/27

Location: Two Roads Brewery @ 1700 Stratford Ave. in Stratford

Cost: $25 with first beer free; $18 for DD (water and soda extra)

Why you should go: This is the second year for the Road Jam Fest and it’s definitely gonna be another great time. Beer is just $5 (you buy tickets with cash, btw) and there will be food trucks there too to help you soak up all that Two Roads. Also, don’t forget the “jam” part of the event with Snooty Garland, McLovins, The Alpaca Gnomes, and The Soul Rebels.

Breweries rep’d: Two Roads

Kent Falls Tasting & CT Beer Book Signing

Date: 7/2 starting at 6

Location: Westbrook Lobster @ 300 Church Street in Wallingford

Cost: Per pint and whatever you order; specials

Why you should go: Not only is Kent Falls Brewing so killer good, but Westbrook Lobster is one of the most popular seafood spots here in this fine state of ours. So, why not bring them together with special pairings of their Field Beer w/ Spelt, Waymaker Brett IPA, and Farmer’s Table? There will also be a deal for ya: $20 gets ya a lobster roll with a Kent Falls beer! Wrapping this all up will be Will Siss (@beersnobwrites) who will be signing copies of his book Connecticut Beer: A History of Nutmeg State Brewing.

Breweries rep’d: Kent Falls Brewing

German Bierfest

Date: 7/12 from 1-6

Location: Harugari German American Club @ 66 Highland Street in West Haven

Cost: $5 entrance; free for under 18

Why you should go: The Austrian Boys will be on hand to slap you in your polka face . . . boom! Like their other events (2 more listed), they’ll have plenty of great German food and brews to partake in.

Breweries rep’d: Various German brews.

Moo & Brew Festival

Date: 7/12 from 4-8

Location: Rosedale Farms & Vineyards @ 25 East Weatogue Street in Simsbury

Cost: $45 (tax and tip extra)

Why you should go: The 7th Annual Max Chef to Farm event series is now in full swing and heats up with the Moo & Brew Festival. Your ticket gets you not only tastes of brews, but also gives you food pairings. Oh, but they aren’t any ol’ food pairings. Nope: each brewery will be paired with a speciality from the state or region where they are from! There will also be music from Will Evans. 

Breweries rep’d: Abita, Allagash, Ballast Point, Full Sail, Google Island, New England Brewing, Oskar Blues, and Victory Brewing.

Beers at the Beach with Kent Falls Brewing

Date: 7/16 starting at 6:30 or 6 for VIP

Location: Calf Pasture Beach in Norwalk

Cost: $30 for GA or $42 for VIP; $10 to park at city beach

Why you should go: Drinking beer at the beach is an American birthright! Plus, we freaking love Kent Falls Brewing and they’ll be there with their stellar farmhouse ales. All entrants get to pick between a burger, 2 hot dogs, or a veggie burger. VIP tix get you in half an hour early, access to a special release beer brewed just for that night, and a Beers at the beach tee.

Breweries rep’d: Kent Falls Brewing

Bethel Beer Fest

Date: 7/17 from 6-9

Location: 1 School Street in Bethel CT

Cost: $20-$45 ($20 for entrance, $25 with mug, $30 with pub glass, $35 with t-shirt, or $45 for pub class and t-shirt.

Why you should go: Because Fairfield County doesn’t have enough beer fests! But, seeing past that, it’s a great time to check out a nice assortment of CT breweries. They also promise to have lots of new brews and even some limited releases.

Breweries rep’d: CT Breweries, TBD

Local Craft Beer Tasting & Concert in the Park

Date: 7/17 from 6:30-8:30

Location: Mill Pond Park in Newington

Cost: $20 in advance or $25 at the door (advanced tickets can be bought at Parks and Recreation office)

Why you should go: Summer’s all about beer and music, so definitely check out this tasting and concert going on in Newington. Your ticket gets you unlimited tastings of some breweries in CT and the Northeast. Also, you’ll get to check out In Deep, one of the area’s most popular classic rock bands. For more info class (860) 665-8666.

Breweries rep’d: Broad Brook, Grey Sail, Half Full, Harpoon, Two Roads, Shebeen, Otter Creek, and Wachusett breweries.

Bacon & Brew Festival

Date: 7/18 from 3-9

Location: City Center @ 186 Main St. in Danbury

Cost: $15 online or $20 at the door; $5 for children 12 and under

Why you should go: Bacon, bacon, and bacon. Seriously, it’s bacon and it’s beer. This is a no-brainer, people. While this isn’t an unlimited sampling event, the entry is cheap enough so you can knock back plenty of brewskis and bacon-laden goodness. Plus, there will be some great bands including Unclaimed, Them Bones (Alice in Chains anyone?), Quicksand Planet, Black Rock Social, Cracker, and Leslie West.

Breweries rep’d: As of now, they’ll have Shebeen, Hooker, Stony Creek, Beaver, Blue Point, Widmer Brothers, Red Hook, Goose Island, and (gulp) Bud.

Freedom Beer (and Root Beer) Fest

Date: 7/18 from 1-4:30 or from 12-4:30 for veterans and active duty military

Location: Warsaw Park @ 119 Pulaski Hwy. in Ansonia

Cost: free to visit and get food, $35 for unlimited samples; $45 at the door ($35 for vets and active duty members)

Why you should go: Aside from all the awesome artwork of scantily clad women in retro uniforms, it’s a great deal with over 70 breweries in attendance. Plus, it’s great to note that this is organized by Valiant in the Valley which is an all-volunteer non-profit organization who will be donating profits to Wounded Warrior Project. Plus, did we mention food trucks like Ruff’s Wood Fire Pizza, Poutine Gourmet, High on the Hog, The Whey Station, and Bricks & Barley Tavern will be there! Plus, there will even be live music from American Babies, Balkun Brothers, and Remember September. Oh, and don’t forget that there will be a pretty impressive of artisan root beers available for purchase for the youngins.

Breweries rep’d: Over 70 including Pies & Pints, New England Cider Company, Thimble Island, Ithaca Beer Co., Shebeen, Hooker, Two Roads, Spiked Seltzer, Berkshire Brewing Company, Onyx Moonshine, Widmer, CBC, Willimantic, Firefly Hollow, Outer Light Brewing, and Heritage Brewing.

Charity tie-in: Wounded Warrior Project

3 Responses to “Ultimate Guide to CT Summer Beer Fests and Events — 2015”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. CT Food News: Food Trucks, Tastings, Fairs, Cowboys, Openings + CT Beer – 8/21/15 | OmNomCT - August 21, 2015

    […] Shore 2 the Pour beach run is this weekend and you can recharge at the finish line (2 Roads) with The Meat Truck, […]

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  2. 203 Food News: CT Beer, Food Trucks, Deals, Meals, Classes + Free Events – 7/10/15 | OmNomCT - July 10, 2015

    […] We hope you all had a really nice 4th of July, OmNomivores. And, we hope you’ve had time to recover from, perhaps, some major league drinking efforts because there are a ton of things going on in Fairfield County and beyond over the next two weeks. For more info on the German Bierfest, Moo & Brew Festival, Beers at the Beach, Bethel Beer Fest, and Bacon & Brew Fest, check out our extremely popular Ultimate Guide to CT Summer Beer Fests and Events. […]

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  3. 203 Food News: Openings, Markets, Fireworks, Props, Cheese, Jobs + CT Beer—6/25/15 | OmNomCT - June 25, 2015

    […] going with an awesome list of events, deals, jobs, and CT brew news. Also check out details on upcoming beer fests or last week’s news. Here we […]

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