Craft Brewing Business is based in Cleveland, and we make no qualms about our love of local Cleveland craft (from Great Lakes Brewing Co. to Fat Head’s Brewery). One of the greatest weeks in America is next week — the sixth annual Cleveland Beer Week — taking place from October 10-19. It will feature more than 350 keg-tapping, beer-sipping events at 125 bars, restaurants and grocers in Cuyahoga County, and this year we may hit’em all.
Traditionally ending on a Saturday, this year the Cleveland Beer Week celebration extends to Sunday, Oct. 19, to accommodate new flagship events.
“We are not only about craft beer education, but also about philanthropy. We are very dedicated to our charity partner, Malone Scholarship Program, which is the benefactor of net proceeds from all flagship events,” explained Christine Montague, director of Cleveland Beer Week. “We look for ways to increase our annual donation the program, but are mindful of ensuring the right fit with other offerings. Yet, our flagship events sell out year to year and patrons keep asking for more. We’ve wanted to add music and leisure events to the mix for some time, and this year found perfect opportunities for new flagship events.”
COLLABORATION KICKOFFS, Oct. 10 and 11 from 7-10 p.m. The official opening ceremony, Collaboration Kickoffs, is sponsored by Heinen’s and features five collaboration brews at retail locations in five neighborhoods including East 4th, Lakewood, Tremont, Ohio City, and Cedar/Lee. The small-batch brews were created specifically for Cleveland Beer Week by teams of five Ohio and five renowned, out of state breweries. In the Cedar/Lee neighborhood only, Collaboration Kickoffs will run instead on Oct. 11 and in partnership with Heights Music Hop. The collaboration beers will only be available together on draft for Collaboration Kickoffs and then singularly, in limited supply, at other retail locations. Advance tickets are required at $25/person for tastes of all collaboration beers. The beers are:
- Yadig?, a Berliner Hopfen-Weiss with 4.8 percent ABVby Great Lakes Brewing Co. and Oskar Blues Brewery of Longmont, Colo.
- OH-MI!, an English Mild Ale with 4.5 percent ABV by Buckeye Brewing and Saugatuck Brewing Co. of Douglas, Mich.
- Brooklyn Dog, a Saison with 4 percent ABV by Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. and Brooklyn Brewery of Brooklyn, N.Y.
- Fat Devil, a Black India Pale Lager (IPL) with 6 percent by Fat Heads Brewery and Devils Backbone Brewing Co. of Roseland, Va.
- Dead Canary, a Grisette Ale with 4 percent ABV by The Brew Kettle and Full Pint Brewing Co. of Pittsburgh.
Here’s a listing of the coolest events:
- Belgian Social, Oct. 11 from 2-5 p.m. A fun, social celebration of the homeland, Belgian Social features Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired fare. This boutique event is hosted by Duvel USA and Butcher & the Brewer in their newly opened space on East 4th Street in downtown Cleveland. Advance tickets are required at $40/person for 15 beer samples and unlimited food sampling.
- Ales on Rails, 10/11 from 4:30-7:30 p.m. For the first time, Ales on Rails is running a daytime excursion so that patrons may enjoy the October scenery. Heidelberg Distributing hosts this delightful ride on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad that features seven craft brews and a boxed supper. Advance tickets are required at $49-82 depending on car selection.
- New Flagship Event: Browns/Steelers Tailgate, Oct. 12 from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Whether you have tickets to the game or not, head to the Huntington Surface Lot for the mother of all tailgates. Great Lakes beer will be flowing along with a special tapping of Cleveland Brown Ale. The Jolly Scholar, winner of numerous reqional BBQ awards and as seen on Food Network, will be on hand with a sausage bar and all the fixings. Also featuring a Tito’s Bloody Mary bar. Advance tickets are required at $25/person.
- Culture Yourself, Oct. 14 from 6-9 p.m. A premier beer and cheese pairing event, Culture Yourself is being held for the first time in the historic West Side Market. One of the only known public events to be held at the Market in its 100-year history, Culture Yourself features 16 top breweries sampling beers that have been carefully paired with artisanal cheeses and other fare from the Market’s own vendors. Meet the brewers and food specialists and enjoy this interactive, walk-around event while discovering your favorite pairings. Advance tickets are required at $40/person for 20 beer samples and food pairings.
- New Flagship Event: Rock and Brew Showcase, Oct. 14 from 8-11 p.m. Revolution Brewing of Chicago presents this inaugural music showcase that brings its philosophy of supporting music to its fans in Cleveland. The Beachland Ballroom will be rocking with eclectic music from both cities including This Moment in Black History & Wooly Bullies from Cleveland; The Lemons, Meat Wave, and Lasers and Fast and Sh!t from Chicago. $10/person for concert entry which includes free shuttle running all night between Market Garden Brewery and Beachland Ballroom.
- New Flagship Event: Offshore Pour, Oct. 15 from 6-9 p.m. Premium Beverage Supply hosts this nighttime cruise aboard the Nautica Queen that features 16 of the best craft breweries in the world and light appetizers. Enjoy the sights of the Cleveland skyline and Lake Erie at cruising speed as you meet brewery reps and taste their beers. Advance tickets are required at $40/person for 20 beer samples and appetizers.
- New Flagship Event: Can Jam, Oct. 16 from 7-11 p.m. An evening of Oskar Blues beer in a can and popular jam bands at the historic Cleveland Agora. Featuring Austin Walkin’ Cane and the Bad Boys of Blues and special headliner Alan Evans of Soulive and his Alan Evans Trio. $20/person includes concert and two Oskar Blues canned beers or standard Agora offerings.
- Brewzilla, Oct. 18 from 6-10 p.m. This monster of a beer tasting, at its new location in the restored 5th Street Arcades in downtown Cleveland, features more than 80 breweries, hundreds of beers, an Ohio brewery feature, a Gnome Garden with Belgian beers, and complimentary appetizers. Advance tickets are required. $75/person for Brewer’s Circle tickets including private lounge open all evening, exclusive beers, additional food pairings, a commemorative t-shirt and all General Admission perks. $50/person for general admission including tasting glass, 25 beer samples and complimentary food. Purchase 10 or more General Admission tickets and save $5 each.
- New Flagship Event: Bluegrass Brew Bash, Oct. 19 from noon-5 p.m. Cleveland Beer Week has extended a day to bring you this outdoor event featuring top local and regional Bluegrass acts for a day of jamming at Whiskey Island’s lakefront setting. Rain or shine, the bash hosted by Beverage Distributors includes great craft brews and popular food trucks. Bands include Boy=Girl, Johnny and the Apple Stompers, The Bluegrass Platter, and special headlining act The Larry Keel Experience. $20/person includes festival entry and two pints of choice from craft breweries or standard Whiskey Island offerings. Cash purchase for food and additional beers; ATMs will be onsite. Children permitted with ticketed adult.
For additional information on Cleveland Beer week or its more than 350 events, to purchase tickets to Flagship Events, or to create your own personal Cleveland Beer Week itinerary, visit www.clevelandbeerweek.org.