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Home / Articles / Food / Food & Drink /  Utah Beer Festival: Beer Here
Food & Drink

Utah Beer Festival: Beer Here

City Weekly cooks up Utah’s biggest brewhaha.

By Ted Scheffler
Posted // September 7,2010 - A state like Utah, with an abundance of award-winning beer producers, deserves to have a great beer festival, right? It’s a no-brainer, which is probably why we at City Weekly got into the brewfest biz.

We’re not the first. I recall wandering around a sparsely attended beer festival back in the early ’90s at Deer Valley Resort. It’s where I first met Mark Alston, proprietor of The Beer Nut and The Bayou, who shanghaied me into taking a crack at homebrewing. I’m not sure whether to thank or smack him, such was my addiction to homebrew for many years.

I’ve more or less gotten that monkey off my back now; I leave the brewing to the pros. Which brings me back to the City Weekly Utah Beer Festival: It’s gonna be a gas, and loaded with Utah’s best suds, made by the pros. We’re so confident that this thing is going to rock that we’re calling it our first annual beer festival.

Here’s the nitty-gritty: The Utah Beer Festival takes place at the City & County Building in downtown Salt Lake City on Saturday, Sept. 11, 1-6 p.m. Attendees will get to sample 3-ounce pours from among more than 40 different Utah brews made by about a dozen different brewers, including full-strength varieties from brewers such as Epic, Uinta and Squatters. A portion of the proceeds from the Utah Beer Festival will be donated to Local First, a nonprofit organization that seeks to strengthen communities and local economies by promoting, preserving, and protecting local, independently owned businesses throughout Utah. Advance tickets are $25 per person, or you can foolishly wait until the day of the festival and pay $35. Needless to say, you must be 21 or over to attend. There are also $5 designated-driver tickets available for purchase at the City Weekly offices or the day of the event.

OK, so that’s the skinny. Who’s going to be there? Well, who isn’t? The lineup is a who’s who of Utah’s best beer makers, including Desert Edge Brewery, Red Rock Brewing Company, Crooked Line, Four , Wasatch Beers, Hoppers Brew Pub, Squatters, Epic Brewing, Roosters, Bohemian Brewery, Ruby River, Shades of Pale and Uinta Brewing. This is your big chance to sample beers from nearly all of Utah’s great brewers under one roof. Well, under one big, blue, (hopefully) sunny sky.

From Roosters, I’d look for their hoppy and justifiably well-known Polygamy Pale Ale, which should be a perfect pitch on a warm sunny day. Monkshine Belgian Style Pale Ale is my favorite offering from Four , while at the Squatters booth, longtime Squatters/Wasatch beermeister Mark Cleveland will be doling out full-strength Hells Keep golden ale. Speaking of Wasatch, I’d love to sip their Devastator Double Bock, one of my faves.

I’ve never had the chance to drink Shades of Pale beer but love the name, and I’m hoping to try Parley’s Pale White Ale, along with Ruby River’s Rockwell Porter, Hoppers’ Pale Morning Ale, Bohemian’s flawless classic Czech Pilsener, and Summertime Kristalweizen from Desert Edge, another of my longtime favorites.

I love Crooked Line’s 9.5 percent ABV Detour Double IPA, as well as Epic’s 9.6 percent Brainless Belgian-Style Golden Ale. From Red Rock Brewing, I’d be thrilled to sip the award-winning Black Bier or German Pilsner and, from wind-powered Uinta, their Anniversary Barley Wine. Prosit!

To buy tickets, go to

Editor’s note: As with any festival, some beers listed here may be in limited supply or substituted, based on availability. We recommend arriving early for best sampling.

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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Post a comment
Posted // September 14,2010 at 13:03

I went to The Beer Festival and paid $59.75 for the event it was a complete debacle and it was not what was advertise. It was advertised that we would be able sample as many beers as we wanted. I waited in long lines to get a 3.5 ounce sample average time was 40 minutes in a line and I got 3 samples in 3 hours. I want a significant refund I had 10.5 oz of beer from local brewers that would be less than 1 bottle. That was worth $3 to me and I waited my whole day frustrated and disappointed that the City Weekly did such a poor job and stole so much money from so many people that wanted to support this event. I’m sure you had lots of complaint. I'm frustrated feel ripped off the am very disappointed in how you prepared and went on with the even knowing before you had sold over 5000 tickets and you didn’t have the necessary amount of beer stations to handle that. You had one beer station able to serve people for each beer. What were you thinking? Most people were very unhappy accept the cheaters that didn't wait in line 40 minutes because you had no support to stop line cutting or just hanging out in the front with their friends. This was a joke the biggest fail in Utah for the year. Please write about it as your lead story next week. You need to provide a do over!!!! You have lot of my and other people’s money and were not too happy about it!!!!! You need to do a rent Brewvies night and give out beer from the venders for free private party for the people that paid and got take advantage of!!!!!!!


Posted // September 13,2010 at 12:44

Th crowd was friendly and the beers were great, the set-up sucked badly.

We hung areound long enough to try maybe 4 beers and that took about 3 hours.

Cmon City Weekly you can do better.


Posted // September 12,2010 at 06:59

A total bust. 40 minutes in line for a 3 oz beer. This was a complete waste of money. I would never go back. People left in droves - but it was good business for the pubs in the area.


Posted // September 13,2010 at 12:02 - You should consider yourself lucky. Only once did I ever recieve more than a single ounce at one time. Usually it was a warm 1 ounce poor. Hardly worth the wait


Posted // September 13,2010 at 05:35 - "40 minutes in line for a 3 oz beer" sounds par for the course in Utah. Sorry to those that lost money, I heard nothing but unfavorable things about the event. Fine tuning for 2011, or should it even be bothered?


Posted // September 10,2010 at 12:29

Just wondering who's bright idea was to have it on the same afternoon at a University of Utah home football game?? Seems you going to be losing a ton of people who would love to attend!! Oh well, sorry we'll be missing it. Maybe next year you'll look at that!


Posted // September 10,2010 at 22:56 - That is exactly why the event is "on the same afternoon". Go to a U game any Fall day, any year, anytime. Eff UNLV. "Lose(ing) a ton of ppl".. who nobody wants to deal with! I'm pleased u r going to the U game instead. fr Godsake go to the Greekfest if ya wanna be a jerk. You prob WILL be at the BeerFest, anyways, bitchin' about some stupid Utah law. Bright idea, is right! u dicksmack. I'm glad u'll miss it along w/ yr BYU Co-Eds. I despise SourPusses. I couldn't agree more. Babies!


Posted // September 10,2010 at 17:35 - I couldn't agree more.


Posted // September 10,2010 at 09:35

will there be snacks or food concessions there?


Posted // September 10,2010 at 12:21 - Here's the awesome list: Food Vendors: Casual Cuisine Catering Chow Truck* City Dogs* Hoppers Nibbles Donuts The Pie* Sage's/Cali's Natural Foods* That's My Dog Red Desert Candy Co. Lugano's (*Vegetarian/Vegan-friendly)


Posted // September 10,2010 at 12:14 - Yes, there will be food vendors.