Event benefits Rotary of Key West
In its sixth year, Key West BrewFest expands to three-dozen events over six days including the Signature Tasting Festival featuring nearly 200 beers and a second-line parade to the after-party. Originated in 2010 by Key West Sunrise Rotary and the Southernmost Beach Resort, Key West BrewFest has raised more than $150,000 for college scholarships and charitable causes.
Brewfest 2015 kicks off on Wednesday, Sept. 2, with a party at Waterfront Brewery, dinner at Isle Cook featuring Chef Wayne Keller and beers by Brown Distributing, and, at Island Dogs, Oskar Blues and Funky Buddha limited release drafts.
Daily elbow-bending events Sept. 3-7 include beer breakfasts at Camille’s Restaurant and cigar-beer pairings at Green Street Cigar Company.
Thursday events include a beer run where participants drink beer at Waterfront Brewery, run (or walk) to The Porch to drink beer, and then run back for the grand finale chug. There will also be the East Coast vs. West Coast Krawl off Duval, Brew Dance Party at Sloppy Joe’s, the Funky Buddha and Barrel of Monks Beer Dinner at 2 Cents, Dog Fish Head Beer Dinner at Bagatelle, and the Shipyard Brewery Tap Invasion at the Green Parrot.
Friday brings the Scavenger Hunt Pool Party with Florida Keys Brewing Company at Southernmost Beach Resort, the New Belgium Brewing Pool Party featuring DJ Jimmy Jamz at the Marker Waterfront Resort, Steins and Stogies at Smokin’ Tuna, The All AmeriCan Summer’s Eve craft beer tasting at Sunset Pier, the Kona Beer Dinner at Southernmost Beach Café, the Boulevard Brewing Co. Kansas City-style dinner at Charlie Mac’s, and the Drink Like a Local Tap Takeover at Waterfront Brewery.
Saturday morning begins with a Funky Buddha and Floridan beer brunch at Square One while Hot Tin Roof offers brunch with craft beer pairings.
The big event, the Signature Tasting Festival, happens on Saturday afternoon at the Southernmost Beach Café, 1405 Duval, showcasing nearly 200 different beers. Tickets are $35 in advance at keystix.com or $40 at the door for the 5-8 p.m. tasting. VIPs pay $75 for the privilege of starting two hours earlier, 3-5 p.m., and getting hors d’oeuvres and BrewFest memorabilia. Designated driver tickets include unlimited water, soda or tea and one complimentary meal. No one under 21 will be admitted and pets are not allowed.
New this year is a New Orleans’ style second line. When the tasting festival wraps, participants can join the second line march following jazz/funk band Water Seed to the Green Parrot to continue the party, hosted by New Belgium Brewery. There’s also a late-night party at The Porch.
For a little “hair of the dog,” The Café offers a hangover brunch featuring Wynwood Brewery. There is also a brunch at 2 Cents and craft brews are paired with brunch at Hot Tin Roof. Shipyard Sunday Funday and Tap Takeover at Rum Row at The Gates Hotel includes flights of beer, food pairings, and live poolside music. Saturday evening, The Gates continues the merriment with discounted beer buckets, giveaways and a DJ at the Brown Distributors Pool Party.
Also on Sunday, Rick’s Bar presents The Last Flight Out with featured breweries and beer giveaways. The Sam Adams Beer Dinner at the Southernmost Beach Café includes eight tapa-style courses. And there’s Sunday Soundcheck with the Bucket of Oskar Blues at the Green Parrot Package Goods and Spirits Patio.
Labor Day brings the final beer dinner at Roostica and bingo at the Green Parrot.
For a full schedule of events, list of beers, pricing and reservation information, visit keywestbrewfest.com. Tickets are limited for each event.