Big Beers Festival Begins Thursday

Big Beers Festival Begins Thursday

Vail, CO – The Sixteenth Annual Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Festival will be tapped at the Vail Cascade Resort on Thursday, January 7th, and will continue through the Commercial Tasting finale on Saturday. Known nationally and internationally as one of the top annual events featuring outstanding beer, the Big Beers Festival boasts an impressive roster of brewing talent, exceptional dining events, and an eclectic schedule of top notch educational seminars.

The 2016 Featured Brewmasters, Geoff Larson of Alaskan Brewing & Bottling and Omar Ansari of Surly Brewing Co., will each be presenting seminars on Saturday afternoon as one of the four available seminar tracks. The other three tracks, Sensory, Technical, and “Random”, will each contain two workshops as well. Each seminar is supported by samples of beer, which attendees will evaluate and taste as part of the experience. For further information, see

Leading off the workshops for the weekend is Ray Daniels, Creator of the Cicerone Program. The Cicerone Program is similar to the Sommelier program for wine, and provides a certification based on measured knowledge of all things beer. Daniels will be presenting a workshop Friday morning from 8:30 – 11:30am that is free to the public, thanks to All About Beer Magazine. follows Daniels’ lead with the first ticketed seminar on Friday evening at 6pm. Their “Beer & Food Experience” showcases the savvy pairings of Chef Adam Dulye with the wisdom of Julia Herz, veteran tour guide in the world of craft beer and Craft Beer Program Director for the Brewers Association.

Experimental Brewing is an annual seminar that is at the core of the Big Beers philosophy, and the topic changes each year. “Koelschips” is the 2016 topic, with a panel of outstanding brewers available to discuss their brewing programs that utilize this brewing approach with the audience.

The Vail Cascade Fireside Bar is the center of non-ticketed fun, with brewers and attendees mingling all weekend. Enjoy a full weekend of Happy Hour on all draft beers, compliments of Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine. In addition, the Cigar Pairing Experience Friday night and The Yoga of Brewing on Saturday morning are open to the public at no charge.

The Commercial Tasting wraps up a weekend full of amazing beer on Saturday afternoon, with over 350 big (7% abv or higher), Belgian in style, and experimental beers for the attendee to sample. Each guest receives a small commemorative tasting glass and food coupon at the entrance, and is guided by their sizeable educational program to explore the event.

Tickets for the Big Beers Festival are sold out online, but can be purchased at Vail Valley liquor stores while they last. Alpine Wine & Spirits, West Vail LiquorMart, Avon Liquors, Beaver Liquors, Riverwalk Wine & Spirits, and Wine or Wort Home Brew Supply are the places to track them down. In addition, free ECO Transit bus passes for Friday and Saturday can be picked up at Wine or Wort and at the Vail Cascade. Please plan your transportation, and do not drink and drive.

For more information about the Big Beers Festival, see or contact event organizer, Laura Lodge, at To learn more about the Big Beers’ worthy beneficiary, The Vail Valley Charitable Fund, see or call 970-926-9795.

Contact Info

Company: Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Festival
Contact: Laura Lodge