On Friday, January 25th, the swankiest of all Minnesota beer festivals is happening downtown St. Paul at the Union Depot from 7-10 pm. This festival is put on every year by the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild and it is not to be missed. Tickets may be purchased online for $90. I would not wait too long, however, this event typically sells out.
Beer & Food Pairings
Like last year, Winterfest will once again showcase how beer and food make wonderful bedfellows. For a complete list of the Beer & Bites, click here. I love pairing beer with food and I hope that there is a little better synergy between the restaurants and the breweries this year when it comes to pairing.
Of the successful pairings from last year, I really thought that the Threat Level Midnight from Barrel Theory with the Nosh’s whipped foie gras parfait was a match made is decadence heaven. The way the richness of the foie gras parfait went perfectly with the texture of the beer actually highlighted flavors instead of canceling them out. It was an amazing sip and a bite.
Is It Worth It?
While the $90 price is a definitely up there, you will not find a more unique food and beer pairing event. The unlimited pours of beers that, quite frankly, are some of the best that the Minnesota breweries have to offer, more than make up for the price of admission. When you factor in the restaurants and their curated bites, it is really a fantastic value.
I major benefit of being at the festival is that the brewery owners are typically the people at the booths. So, you can engage them in dialogue in a meaningful way that you cannot at some of the other, oversold festivals. They do a nice job of capping the number of tickets sold at Winterfest so that it does not feel crowded or like you can’t ask questions about the food and beer.
For a detailed recap of last year’s Winterfest event, check out my article. I am sure that once you read my detailed report of the delicious sips and bites, you will be ordering your tickets sooner than later. Winterfest is my favorite beer festival in Minnesota because of the eating, drinking, and conversations. I fully recommend you give Winterfest 2019 a try.
Dan Beaubien has been involved with Beerploma since 2014 although his passion for craft beer dates back to 2006 when he started traveling for beer. Dan mostly covers craft beer events, festivals, brewery openings/releases, and beer reviews. Dan has a soft spot in his heart for authentic British Style ales, IPAs, and all things barrel-aged. If you have any questions or comments about this article feel free to email Dan at firstname.lastname@example.org .