Connecticut Beer Fests to Fall for This Autumn Last Updated 9/19
Our CT Ambassador, Kevin Mardorf of CTBeer.com is back with a new list of great spots for beer lovers over the next few months (including Oktoberfest celebrations)! Check out his list below, and make sure you bookmark CTBeer.com and follow @CTBeer on Instagram for upcoming beer fests and other events!
Autumn is like Christmas time in the world of beer festivals. The weather is more comfortable than in the summer and usually more stable than in the spring. Most importantly – the flavors and styles tend to get more diverse. And then there’s a little thing called Oktoberfest…
Ocean Beach Park, New London
Sept. 6, 2019
Don’t abandon the shore after Labor Day. Sample from among 150 brews, indulge in some local brew-friendly food favorites and enjoy beautiful Ocean Beach Park, chosen by National Geographic as one of the best beaches in the Northeast. Live music and a wine tasting are included in the admission price.
Sept. 7, 2019
Now in its 14th year, this classic starts with more than 275 beers, including newcomers New England Brewing Co. (Woodbridge), Relic Brewing (Plainville) and Night Shift Brewing (Everett, Mass.). Pay a little extra for the early VIP Hour and you can sample exclusive craft specialty and small-batch brews. Like competition? Check out the expanded homebrewers contest and the amateur Pit Master grill-off. In addition to live music and awesome food (check out Hard Core Sweets “beer battered” cupcakes), guests can also attend free workshops on brewing, beers and BBQ.
Sept. 7, 2019
After five years, this beer-and-wing fest is now a beer and FOOD fest. Its expanded menu features local restaurants along with an expected 80 craft beers to sample. If you purchase your tickets at least a week in advance online, you are automatically entered in raffle to win a “barrel of beer/booze.”
Now THIS is unique. The birthplace of the father of the modern dictionary hosts more than 20 state brewers (including last year’s champs, Counter Weight Brewing of Hamden) who compete to brew a one-off cask of “real ale,” unpasteurized and available only that day. The catch? They must feature flavorings, such as horseradish, lemon verbena and whortleberry, from the 18th-century home’s garden or pantry. A special “Sours, Funky & Foreign” tasting room will offer samplings from Switzerland, Belgium, Italy and beyond.
Sept. 14, 2019
This one-day, two-session event creates a true festival atmosphere in downtown Hartford with lots of live music and a food truck plaza. It features Connecticut breweries exclusively (more than 45 in all) and offers unlimited tastings.
Lighthouse Point Park, New Haven
Sept. 15, 2019
This fest celebrates its fifth year by getting bigger by going smaller. Along with a dozen-plus Connecticut breweries, it’s adding several microbrewers and small-batch makers like Center Street Brewing (Wallingford), 2nd Bridge Brewing (Manchester) and purely solar-powered Nod Hill Brewery (Ridgefield) along with returnee, Brew Haven – a homebrewing collective from New Haven.
Sept. 21, 2019
Back for a second year, the Borough Brew Festival lets attendees sample libations from more than 50 craft breweries and also from a large selection of area vineyards. As for food, you can indulge in items from local restaurants and food trucks or grab a plate at the pig roast.
Two Roads Brewing Company, Stratford
Sept. 21-22, 2019
Get your lederhosen on! Two Roads transforms itself for two days into a stateside version of Munich, Germany, to pay homage to that world-famous beer festival (pictured above). Authentic German music and food will be featured, along with German-style beers (your first one is complimentary when you attend, along with a free stein to bring home). While there join in or just watch the bratwurst-eating and traditional stein-holding contests.
Sept. 21, 2019
Beer & BBQ. Need I say more? Tickets will include all-inclusive brew n’ que featuring only regional and state breweries, 5 whole Berkshire hogs, and barbecue sides galore. Plus, live music, souvenir sampling glassware, games and prizes. The Stack is one of our favorite BBQ joints in the state for their sweet pad and “Collab lab” brewing facilities, hosted by our pals at Black Hog Brewery. Proceeds to benefit Vie for the Kids. Help us kick kid's cancer.
Sept. 20-21, 2019
Milford Oktoberfest is the largest and oldest continuously operating Oktoberfest in Connecticut. Come enjoy our BIER GARTEN with three Milford breweries and 15 different kinds of beer, German and American food vendors, German Dancers, an Oompah band and popular music by some of the areas top bands.
Sept. 27, 2019
This more intimate Friday night event lets you enjoy a lovely view of the Long Island Sound while tasting whiskey and beers from more than two dozen vendors, including all-women owned and operated Hartford Flavor Company.
Sept. 28, 2019
Connecticut breweries go head-to-head in a friendly tasting competition and let attendees decide who is the best in the state. Categories will include IPA, double IPA, lager, ale, stout, sour and seasonal. Competitors will be breweries big and small, such as Black Hog (Oxford). Stony Creek (Branford), Lock City (Stamford), Witchdoctor (Southington) and Hoax (East Haven).
Mohegan Sun, Uncasville
Oct. 4-5, 2019
How do you make this annual event featuring more than 150 brews (with unlimited sampling) in a 270,000-square-foot casino convention center even bigger? Add a special, more intimate two-hour Taste of New England event the night before (Oct. 4). This separate entry event will celebrate favorite foods and beers from Connecticut to Maine. You can also add entry in a cornhole tourney to the Oct. 5 main event for a chance to win $200 in Mohegan Sun gift cards.
Mount Southington Ski Area, Southington
Oct. 12, 2019
If you get tired of trying the 100+ brews here, sample Blood Marys and vote for this event’s annual contest. Local and national distilleries and vineyards will also be offering tastes. Bash promoters promise a few special surprises for those attending, along with trivia contests, games and raffles, with proceeds benefiting the Farmington-based REACH Foundation’s Shop with a Cop program for children.
Rosedale Farms & Vineyards, Simsbury
Oct. 13, 2019
The sixth edition of this annual event continues to bring together home brewers and around 40 great state and regional breweries, including Beer’d (Stonington) and Willimantic Brewing Company, to celebrate the harvest with tasty, fresh food at historic Rosedale Farms and Vineyards.
Oct. 19, 2019
Does anything taste as good as a beer in a ballpark? How about a nice glass of wine? Beautiful Dunkin’ Donuts Park, home of the Double AA Hartford Yard Goats and two-time winner of Best Ballpark in America by Ballpark Digest, adds vino from local and regional vineyards to its samplings of Connecticut and Northeast beers in a spacious downtown setting that’s always a home run with visitors. You’ll be able to sample offerings (including gluten-free brews) from more than 50 vendors, listen to bands as they rock atop the dugouts, and play a round of mini golf on this diamond in the state’s capital.
Oct. 19, 2019
The Manchester Beer Fest is a first-year beer fest featuring a wide variety of beers from local CT breweries. Price of admission includes a commemorative tasting glass, unlimited samples (while supplies last), entertainment, and access to food trucks. Our friends from Cousins Maine Lobster will be in the house too. RSVP for this event ASAP!
Nov. 23, 2019
Now in its fifth year, the Elm City Brew Festival boasts 50+ beers and 200+ brewers at this annual event. VIP (including one-hour early entry) and General Admission tickets are available. Be sure to pre-game (or post-game) right next door at the Owl Shop Cigar Lounge--one of my favorite places in New England to relax and enjoy a smoke and brew, including New Haven's own Rhythm Brewing Company's craft lager.
Since 2013, Kevin from CTBeer.com has been dedicated to supporting and promoting the Connecticut Craft Beer scene. His is also the Founder of BeerFests.com, now widely considered to be the go-to resource for beer festivals nationwide. His mission is to bring people together to enjoy craft beer all while directly supporting the folks who brew it. Follow his Instagram account @CTBeer for the latest news about your favorite Connecticut craft beers, upcoming events and so much more.