Auckland’s City of Ales Festival returns to the beer festival calendar this year.
After last year’s event was cancelled, this year’s COAF is all-on, confirmed, lock, loaded and set in concrete for Saturday 14 October at the Maritime Room on Princes Wharf. There will be two three-hour sessions starting at noon and 4pm. 300 tickets are available for each session, available here for $42.50.
Organiser Steve Wood says it will be an all-Auckland affair for the first time.
“I think Auckland has enough breweries and enough brands to showcase. It’s a really good way to show people what Auckland has to offer. There will be nearly 30 beers. Some of them will be made specifically for the festival; some will be seasonals to be launched at the festival; and some will be mainstays that showcase their brand.”
Look out for festival brews from Mythica, Alibi and Brothers. And listen out for a funky good time – Steve has brought music to COAF for the first time.
“I wanted there to be a bit of atmosphere this year. Last time I thought it missed a bit of atmosphere and music to get people in that festival mood. We’ve got a band called Hopetoun Brown. They did a collaboration brew with (Steve’s day job) Hallertau last year and brought their trumpets and were dancing around the brewhouse. I think it’s the happiest I’ve ever been at work!”
Right now there’s two ways you can get involved with COAF.
You can vote for the Festival collaboration brew here. Once the style’s chosen, a competition will choose the beer’s name (Beery McBeerface is totally banned Neil). The winning name-chooser gets to meet Society of Beer Advocates president Maree Shaw and together make the festival beer at Colab Brewing.
Or, you can volunteer. Steve needs 20-25 volunteers – you’ll get a ticket to the second session if you volunteer at the first. Volunteers at the second session will get a session in an Auckland craft bar.
“Working fulltime at Hallertau and organising City of Ales, it’s been a busy couple of months. I don’t think you know how much work it will be until you actually start, but no, loving it! Hopefully we can make it the best City of Ales yet with the music and some unique Auckland brews, and show people from outside Auckland that we have a good industry here and we make just as good beer as Wellington!”