The Brew Site

Bend’s biggest beer event returns

The 15th annual Bend Brewfest returns to Bend, Oregon’s Les Schwab Amphitheater this week, running from Thursday the 10th through Saturday the 12th. Normally taking place the third week of August, this year the eclipse prompted the organizers to move it a week earlier. This is the region’s largest beer event, with an expectation of up to 40,000 visitors attending over the three day period.

Here’s the description and details from the media release:

The Bend Brewfest showcases some of the most innovative breweries in the country, large and small. West Coast heavyweights Deschutes, Lagunitas and Sierra Nevada will once again be at the Bend Brewfest, as will regional favorites like Crux, pFriem, Fremont and Hopworks Urban Brewery. Craft beer aficionados will also have the chance to sample some of the Pacific Northwest’s smaller standouts such as Sedition Brewing out of The Dalles, Oregon; Ashtown Brewing from Longview, Washington; and Incline Cider Company based out of Auburn, Washington. Overall, more than 200 beers, ciders and wine will be showcased during the festival.

One of the yearly highlights at the Bend Brewfest is its X-Tap program. Essentially a specialty beer festival within the Bend Brewfest itself, the X-Tap program is reserved for small batch and experimental beers. The X-Taps are where festivalgoers can indulge in big barrel-aged beers like Anderson Valley’s Wild Turkey Bourbon Barrel Aged Salted Caramel Porter or Deschutes Brewery’s Black Butte XXVII, both of which will be on tap at this year’s Brewfest. The 2017 X-Tap program also includes a number of hard-to-find sour and farmhouse ales, such as pFriem’s Kumquat Farmhouse Ale, Buoy’s Benedict Cumberbatch and Boneyard’s Gooze Cruze. Approximately 40 breweries and cider houses are participating in this year’s X-Tap program.

Families are welcome during the day but the Bend Brewfest is 21 and over after 5 p.m. No dogs allowed.

Visitors can enter the event for free. A one-time purchase of a souvenir mug is required for tasting. Mugs start at $20 and include five tasting tokens. Additional tasting tokens can be purchased for $5 for five tokens. One token equals a 4-ounce taste.

When visitors drink beer at the Bend Brewfest, they’re also helping the community. This year’s charity beneficiaries will be the Deschutes River Conservancy, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Oregon, NeighborImpact and the Bend Fire Community Assistance Program. Money raised at the event will go to the nonprofit organizations to help them achieve their missions.

The beer and cider lineup is listed here, and the X-Tap schedule of specialty beers is here. I haven’t run the numbers but this looks like the largest number of beers they’ve ever had pouring.

It’s going to be hot, too—so if you’re attending, be sure to drink plenty of water!