After an extremely successful third year that included over 1,000 events and 195 participants, Philly Beer Week is already getting ready for a fourth go-around. This past week the powers that be behind Philly Beer Week announced the dates for 2011, and it looks like Beer Week is going to stay in the summer rather than move back to its old home in March. Next year’s dates are going to be June 3rd through June 12th.
For those of you that are unfamiliar with Philly Beer Week, PBW was the initial 10 day long festival celebrating beer heritage in its city that has thus sprung life into around 25 other cities throughout the country. During these 10 days, bars, breweries, restaurants, and other beer related industries team up to bring you some of the craziest, most impressive beer events they can think of.
This year’s festivities ranged from a world record tapping of the most Bell’s beers at once at the newly opened City Tap House in University City, where they tapped an amazing 32 unique Bell’s Beer, a handful of which have never entered the state of Pennsylvania, to Yards Brewing Company, home to the second annual “Smoke ‘Em if Yous Got ‘Em” event, which is quickly becoming one of the most anticipated events of the Philly Beer Week. Each year, Yards brings in a vast variety of smoke beers from throughout the world to pair with their amateur barbecue contest. This year’s event included a mighty tasty General Tso’s Brisket, which will be featured in the next issue of Philly Beer Scene Magazine.
Other notable events during Philly Beer Week 2010 included a lambic summit sampling of many rare and hard to find lambics, Zythos America, which brought out a dozen brewers to pour some of the best Belgian beers out there, and a traditional German Beirfest put on by the local German specialists at Brauhaus Schmitz.
On top of those events though, there were hundreds of other beer dinners scattered throughout the city, beer bunches every morning to cure the hangovers, and some of the biggest brewers from Belgium to California were in town to meet and greet. Philly Beer Week is a week like none other. If you have yet to check it out, I highly recommend you booking your plane tickets and hotel rooms now for 2011. Each year it just keeps getting bigger and better, and who knows what will be in store for year four.
Mat Falco is the founder of Philly Beer Scene Magazine.