On January 22, 2017 I attended the Tri-Cities Cask Festival Winter 2017 Pro-Am with my wife and Mike.
This may be my favourite festival going forward. It was well organized, busy but not crowded, full of one-off casks and there were a ton of extras that came with the ticket. Plus I got to debut my drinking horn.
Let me apologize for the lack of pictures, I was having too much fun. You can see Mike’s post for his pictures.
Tickets are $49 and you get 10 tasting tokens, 1 custom burger with beef, chicken or veggie patty and fixings and a poutine with beef, mushroom or butter chicken gravy and fixings. On top of that there was live entertainment, a large, easily accessible water station and good seating.
I know layout isn’t really interesting but I do have to point out that everything was really well laid out. The event was held in a ballroom at the Coquitlam Executive Plaza Hotel and the hallway outside of the ballroom. Inside the ballroom the casks, seating and entertainment were setup, casks in the middle and seating on either end. Out in the hall were the food stations along one wall and a huge water station on the other wall. This allowed people to circulate so well and water was always easily available. I never waited more than a minute for a sample and all of the people manning the casks could chat for a moment because there weren’t huge lines.
The “Pro-Am” part of the event title stands for “Professional-Amateur” so there were homebrew clubs with casks to show off, including the Cow Town Yeast Wranglers who brought an Anise casked beer which was my favourite of the day. Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s Brewing program brought two beers, one brewed by students the other by their instructors. This really added some fun to the event and ensured there were new beers I had never tried.