Chicago Labor Day Weekend Craft Beer Events

Chicago Labor Day Weekend Craft Beer Events
The South Side-Bronzeville-Motor Row area is becoming a new Chicago beer destination.

Yep, I am going to have go on a bit of a hiatus after this column. As I have hinted before, I have a lot of freelance work, some of which actually pays, and I have a proposal I need to put together for a book on beer and culture. But I do have a few feature articles in the hopper I need to put together in the meantime. Just no more time to sort through 100 web sites for bars and brewers to compile this excellent calendar for you great readers. But I will still be tracking through events as they are emailed to me or pop up on my Facebook page. You can keep track of a less comprehensive beer guide on my Calendar page that may one day grow up to be an app, and follow new events and news on my Facebook fan page.

Friday, August 29

4:00 pm ♦ Vice District Brewing Company Opening Day
Vice District Brewing Company, 1454 S. Michigan Ave, Chicago
After months of construction, Vice District Brewing Co. is excited to announce that the taproom will officially be opening Friday, August 29. “We would really like to thank everyone for their patience and support along the way,” said co-owner, Curtis Tarver II. “It’s taken a bit longer than we originally planned.”
Vice District Brewing Co. occupies a landmark building and pays homage to the history of the area. Exposed brick, communal tables and an open-air concept refresh the space without taking away from the building’s character. Serving tanks are nestled alongside patrons and viewing windows allow guests to watch the brewers in action.
Though Vice District plans to offer 14 different beers on tap, their opening line up will consist of a more curated selection. A Black IPA, Extra Special Bitter, IPA, Blonde, and Molasses Porter will be available for patrons to try as well as a special collaboration release that is being kept under wraps until opening day.

4:00 - 6:00 pm ♦ Beer Sampling at Kenwood Liquors
Kenwood Liquors, 12037 W. 159th St., Homer Glen, IL (708) 590-8210
Strongbow & Amstel Radler

5:00 - 8:00 pm ♦ Artful Dinner with Blue Moon
Jewel-Osco, 4660 W. irving Park Rd., Chicago, IL
Try some food samples paired with Blue Moon's Belgian style ale, including their new Cinnamon Horchata Ale. Another sampling Saturday, 12 - 3 pm at Jewel-Osco at 1340 S. Canal, and Sunday, 12 - 3 pm, at 1300 S. Milwaukee in Libertyville.

Saturday, August 30

2:00 pm - 5:00 pm ♦ Beer Sampling at Kenwood Liquors
Kenwood Liquors, 12037 W. 159th St., Homer Glen, IL (708) 590-8210
Staropramen; Shiner Oktoberfest/White Wing, Bridgeport Hop Czar.

3:00 - 4:30 pm ♦ Beer Tasting at the Bottle Shop
The Bottle Shop, 1148 Central Ave., Wilmette, IL (847) 256-7777
Lagunitas is back. $10 reimbursed with purchase.

4:00 pm - 8:00 pm ♦ Heritage BBQ at Goose Island
Goose Island Barrel Warehouse, 605 N. Sacramento Blvd., Chicago
Heritage BBQ presented by Goose Island Beer Co. is kicking off a five city global BBQ tour in Chicago on August 30th over the Labor Day weekend.
The local-food focused BBQ tour started by Brady Lowe, Founder of Cochon 555, invites five notable chefs to put their love of globally-influenced whole pig BBQ to the test in a friendly but fierce competition to promote the consumption of heritage breed pigs raised by local family farms.
This year’s competing chefs include Chrissy Camba of Laughing Bird, Carlos Gaytan of Mexique, Abraham Conlon of Fat Rice, Cary Taylor of Big Star and Nathan Sears of The Radler and D.A.S..
Each chef will be given a 200 pound heritage breed pig to create six dishes for a crowd of pork-loving enthusiasts. A panel of 20 respected judges will vote for Chicago’s “BBQ King or Queen.” The BBQ will take place at Goose Island’s new Barrel Warehouse – a facility dedicated to the art of aging beers in wine and liquor barrels.
Additionally this year, Heritage BBQ will debut “BBQ TRADITIONS,” a series of pop-up pairings where notable chefs will serve one dish that best exemplifies a culinary tradition and BBQ culture from anywhere in the world. Guests will have the chance to pair spectacular wines, brews, and spirits with globally inspired BBQ dishes such as Braai from Africa, Char Siu from China, Churrasco from Brazil and Barbacoa from Mexico. Heritage BBQ is an edible education on the finest social tradition in human history. Together with local food producers, craft brewers, winemakers and prestigious distillers, the Heritage BBQ tour motivates grilling communities worldwide to support local food producers, and to break ground on a new hyper-local, globally-themed BBQ while celebrating National Bourbon Month.
The 500 person event features over 1,400+ pounds of heritage pig in an all-inclusive tasting. In addition to the 35+ chef-prepared global BBQ dishes, guests will also experience:
• The Goose Nest, an area featuring the Bourbon County Brand Stout, and Vintage Ales from Goose Island Beer Co.
• Pop-Up Butcher Shop with Rob Levitt of The Butcher & Larder, benefiting Kendall College and Le Cordon Bleu with the support of Williams-Sonoma
• Special “Summer Citrus” cocktail from Four Roses Bourbon
• “Perfect Manhattan” Bourbon Bar to celebrate National Bourbon Month, featuring Eagle Rare, Buffalo Trace, Breckenridge Bourbon, Templeton Rye, Four Roses and Luxardo
• TarTare Bar featuring Creekstone Farms, an artisan cheese bar with Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine featuring Rogue Creamery, and Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheese
• Portfolio tasting of Crispin Ciders, amazing wines, and a Mezcal Bar featuring Fidencio and Mezcales de Leyenda
• Pre-awards “Ice Cream Social” with James Beard Award Winner, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams
Tickets for general admission start at $125, and VIP tickets for early admission are $200. VIP includes 60-minute early access to all the food (special, limited dishes) and a chance to mingle with chefs, judges and media. Both ticket prices are all-inclusive of food and beverage.
To purchase tickets, visit this website.

7:00 - 10:00 pm ♦ Beverly Brews Fest
Beverly Arts Center, 2407 W. 111th Street, Chicago
The Beverly Arts Center will host its first annual craft beer festival. More info and tickets at this link.
Featuring over 20 great craft breweries, the fest will also host music from The Leadfoot Band and Brown Bag, food trucks in our parking lot, beer artists, raffles with great prizes, and Brews Cruise Chicago. A special VIP hour will feature short lines and food pairings from chefs and restaurants who have teamed up just for Beverly Brews Fest! All festival goers will also take home a commemorative Beverly Brews Fest glass.
Breweries: Argus, Bucket List, Destihl, Flesk Brewing, Hailstorm, Horse Thief Hollow, Lake Effect, Lagunitas, Middle Brow, Nevin's, New Holland, One Trick Pony, Revolution, Rockford Brewing Company (MI), Sierra Nevada, Ten Ninety, Transient Artisan Ales, Two Brothers ...and more to be announced!
General Admission 7p-10p $30 ($35 Day of Event)

  • Unlimited Craft Beer Samples from 7p-10p
  • Commemorative Festival Glass
  • Live music by The Leadfoot Band and Brown Bag
  • Tour info and signups with Chicago Brews Cruise
  • Beer Art and demonstrations by artist Kyle Bice

VIP Admission 6p-10p $45 ($50 Day of Event)

  • Early entrance and limited access to ensure short lines
  • Beer Centered Food Pairings from local chefs and restaurants who have teamed up with brewers specifically for Beverly Brews Fest
  • Unlimited Craft Beer Samples from 6p-10p
  • Commemorative Festival Glass
  • Live music by The Leadfoot Band and Brown Bag
  • Tour info and signups with Chicago Brews Cruise
  • Beer Art and demonstrations by artist Kyle Bice

Sunday, August 31

7:00 - 11:00 pm ♦ Chicago Fringe Fest Annual Benefit
Fischman's Liquors & Tavern, 4780 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago (773) 545-0123
Chicago Fringe Festival is having its second annual benefit at Fischman Liquors & Tavern. We'll be shutting down Central Ave. for the evening to support and celebrate our beloved Fringe.
Through the support of generous donors, your $25.00 ticket ($20.00 in advance on our website by August 29th; $10.00 for 2014 volunteers at the door with a volunteer tee-shirt) will give you access to 3 drink vouchers, delicious eats, and an exciting silent auction and raffle. Come early to enjoy the accordion tunes of Captain Ambivalent (from 7:00 to 8:00 PM) and stay late for DJ tunes (from 8:00 to 11:00 PM), The evening not only provides a great opportunity to support Fringe, but also to mingle with staff and board members, 2014 artists, and Jefferson Park community members. All proceeds benefit the festival. Join us!

Monday, September 1

11:00 am - 2:00 am ♦ Labor Day Gose Wild!
Northdown Cafe & Taproom, 3244 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago (773) 697-7578
Join us for our 2nd Annual Gose/Berliner Weisse Labor Day Extravaganza!
Some highlights on tap:
Stillwater Artisanal/ Westbrook Brewing Company Gose Gone Wild; Monarchy/ Kissmeyer Beer & Brewing Viking Gose; Off Color Brewing Fierce; Bahnhof Gose (with pine needles); Boulevard Brewing Company Hibiscus Gose. More draft info, syrup varieties, what-not to follow!

1:00 pm ♦ Ticket sales open for Map Room Beer School
The Map Room, 1949 N. Hoyne Chicago (773) 252-7636
Greg Browne, brewmaster at Mickey Finn's Brewery in Libertyville, is our guide. Study several beers and learn exactly what you're tasting and the roles that the ingredients and the brewing process have in forming those aromas and flavors. Enjoy fine beer, good company and expert tutelage.
Tickets go on sale today at 1 p.m. for the next class, to be held September 27, 4 p.m. Topic: Oktoberfest beers. Limit, 45 people. Price, $25 per person. Cash only, maximum 2 tickets per purchase, and first come-first serve until all tickets have been sold. You must have a ticket to attend Beer School. Sorry, no exceptions.

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    Mark McDermott

    Writer, trivia maven, fan of many things. I thought to learn all there is to know about beer as a way to stay interested in learning. It is my pleasure to bring Chicago's craft beer scene to you.

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