Response to first event 'overwhelmingly positive'
With people looking for something different than what mainstream beer companies produce, the craft beer market is “exploding,” said Paul Loewenberg.
“Nothing against the big companies, but they produce an accessible beer by millions of hecalitres where there's not a lot of strong, distinctive flavours,” said the manager of The Townehouse Tavern. “It's a very clean, simple taste.”
Not being hindered by these requirements, craft beer producers across Canada are experimenting with different roasting levels and added flavours, Loewenberg said. “There's a million tastes of beer,” he said.
The response to last year's festival was “overwhelmingly positive,” Loewenberg said, estimating that at least 1,500 people attended.
As it did in 2013, the event is set to take place from 12 p.m. to 12 a.m. Aug. 9 on Grey Street — which will be closed for the occasion — along with the nearby Townehouse and Laughing Buddha.
This year's festival features 12 craft brewers — up from nine last year — including Muskoka Brewery, Okanagan Spring Brewery, Unibroue from Quebec, Sawdust City Brewing Co. from Gravenhurst and Sudbury's own Stack Brewing.
Beyond beer, food from the Buddha and Townehouse kitchens will be joined by an outdoor barbecue pit.
There will also be live music from groups including The Bluez Brotherz, Sulfur City, Zamboni Slim and Alun Piggins and the Quitters.
Stack Brewing owner Shawn Mailloux said he'll be bringing along five of his beers — Saturday Night, Impact Altbier, Friendly Moose, Vanilla Amber Chai and Les Portes de L'Enfer.
“Pretty much every city in Ontario has a beer festival now,” he said.
“It's nice to see that it's back again for another year in Sudbury. It's promising for the craft beer market here in Sudbury, to help it slowly change, and make it a little bit more pro craft beer.”
Tickets to the event, which cost $20 each, pay for a souvenir sample glass and three beer samples. They're available at the gate and in advance at the Buddha, the Townhouse and Cosmic Dave's.
Because it's an event focused on alcohol, the craft beer festival is only open to those over the age of 19, with the exception of young children accompanied by parents.
For more information, search for “Elgin Street Craft Beer Festival” on Facebook.