Brewers of masterful concoctions will fill Fremantle to the brim this weekend as the annual Beerfest returns for its seventh year!
In Esplanade Park on November 8 to 10, festival goers will sample any number of the beers, ales, lagers, pilsners and more from nearly 60 WA craft breweries, cider-makers and distillers.
Beerfest founder and organiser James Harding said Beerfest is the oldest beer festival in Australia, having run nationally for 11 years, and has come to Fremantle for seven.
The Fremantle festival kicks off the series of seven events around Australia before returning to WA for the final festival in March next year.
“Fremantle is by far the biggest and is the only one that runs for three days,” Mr Harding said.
“We’ve seen the craft beer scene evolve massively. When we started there were only about 100 craft breweries nationally and now there are more than 600.”
Fremantle is also the only festival in the series to feature only WA brewers, focusing solely on the creatively and flavour of the State. Craft brewers from across the eastern states will also be invited to the Perth Beerfest, hosted in Langley Park in the CBD.
A new feature of the Fremantle festival this year is the Paddle Bar; a project unique to Beerfest in which brewers are challenged to show their creativity by designing a 50-litre beer of their choice.
Brewers from across Australia collaborated with WA brewers to make a collection of 40 beers, including a sweet tropical cider called ‘Pining for a Kiwi’, a Ginger and Lemongrass Sour, a Lemon Myrtle Pale Ale and a Smoked New England IPA called ‘Smoke Hazy’.
“Usually what people drink at a beer festival is not what they drink at home, its about challenging the status quo and trying something new,” Mr Harding said.
“You could say it’s Disneyland for adults, it’s a beer haven.”
Catering for all taste-buds, there will also be a Crafted cocktail bar, an espresso martini bar, a gin and cold-pressed juice bar and a melted cheese bar.
In celebration of the festival, Little Creatures are releasing a specially brewed Juicy IPA, the "Little Love Coastal IPA". The best bit? all proceeds will help fund the Yallingup Project, a Coastcare sustainability initiative that will help reduce the human impact at Yallingup Beach.
Even as the taste buds are savouring such variety, what is there for the ears?
Well, Aria Award-winning band Art vs Science will be headlining the festival on Saturday November 9 as part of their 10-year anniversary tour, while WA band Drapht will hitting the stage on November 8.
In an appropriate twist, a unique one-off summer session ale will also be launched at the festival called ‘Art vs Science vs Beer’.
Even if you’re a fan of the brews but don’t have the know-how behind the craft, the WA craft beer industry will be hosting a range of masterclass workshops and tastings for you to have a go.
Make like a connoisseur in sessions on Distilling 101, Exploring Beer and Smoked Meats, Beer and Chocolate, From Paddock to Pint to Mouth – The Sustainability of Brewing, and Future of WA Craft Beer.
Families are welcome at the events with a range of entertainment for kids including a bouncy castle, face-painting and roving performers!
Tickets range from $15-$25 depending on the day and are available online now.