The Brew Site

Oregon Garden Brewfest, this weekend for Father’s Day

The 11th annual Oregon Garden Brewfest has been moved out of the month of April where it’s taken place in years past and lands on Father’s Day weekend—June 19th through 21st, kicking off this week! This Brewfest has one of the most unique venues of any I’ve been to, the Oregon Garden in Silverton, “an 80-acre botanical garden, featuring more than 20 specialty gardens showcasing the diverse botanical beauty that can be found in the Willamette Valley and throughout the Pacific Northwest.” The festival itself is held indoors (in the event center) but with admission you’ll be able to explore the Garden with beer in hand.

Immediate disclosure: Once again I was invited to attend the OGBF under media credentials, which includes passes for two to the Friday session of the brewfest, as well as one ticket to the Brewer’s Tasting Dinner taking place Thursday night, and an overnight stay for two at the Oregon Garden Resort Thursday night. As in past years we’ve bought an extra dinner ticket, and in the past we’ve also paid for a second night at the Resort. (This year we’ll be leaving Friday after attending the festival.)

The Fest is usually ages 21-and-over only but this year because it’s Father’s Day they have opened up Sunday to be “Family Day” which will include kid’s crafts and free root beer. Hours are noon to 5pm that day, with the first two days running from noon to 11pm (and no minors allowed those days).

Other features they highlight:

It is of course the Oregon Garden itself that makes this festival stand out from others—it is quite simply stunning in its garden and botanical variety and beautiful landscaping. The beer portion of the Brewfest itself follows the same common model of most beer festivals these days: you get a souvenir glass and tasting tickets (for $1 each) good for a small pour. (One thing I think would make the beer part stand out a bit more would be to have some breweries make a “Garden Beer” using edible botanicals that you find in the Garden.)

In fact, tickets are available online and this is the pricing scheme:

There is additional at-the-door pricing to accommodate other scenarios.

The beer list (PDF) is once again impressive, with the usual appearance of standards and a nice selection of new and/or unusual beers that pique my interest in particular. Like last year, I don’t a particular set of recommendations or “must try” beers to steer you towards, but here’s the current list with beers in bold indicating my own interest in trying:

And finally let’s not forget the Brewer’s Tasting Dinner taking place Thursday night at 7pm at the Oregon Garden Resort! This features six courses paired with different Oregon beers (varying quite a bit across styles and ingredients) and if it’s as good as last year’s dinner I’ll be very happy! (I expect it to be as good or better, the dinners have gotten consistently better over the past several years I’ve been attending.)

The price to attend is $50 and there are still 18 left as of this writing. It’s well worth it. And to further whet your appetite, here is the menu along with the beers:

If you’ve never been to the Oregon Garden Brewfest, this weekend is a great time to come—the weather is looking to be perfect and the Garden itself will be lush and vibrant. The beers will be great too and if you can make it to the Brewer’s Tasting Dinner, don’t wait to get tickets!

Hope to see you there!