Thursday, February 21, 2013

Fourth Annual Ontario Craft Brewers (OCB) Province-Wide Festival Launches June 16, 2013

Toronto, ON


"Mark your calendars, craft beer lovers," says Steve Abrams, co-chair, Ontario Craft Beer Week 2013 and partner/owner, Mill Street Brewery. "Ontario Craft Brewers' annual celebration of craft beer, the people who make it and the people who drink it, will return to communities across the province this Father's Day."

The goal of Ontario Craft Brewers' week-long, province-wide festival is to celebrate the local craft beer scene and expose consumers to the premium quality and culture of Ontario craft beer. OCB breweries will host events on-site at their breweries, in pubs, restaurants, and event venues throughout Ontario in cities such as Toronto, Guelph, London, Ottawa and smaller communities from Cambridge to Vankleek Hill and Muskoka to Niagara.

"This is an awesome opportunity for people to join in on the Ontario craft beer revolution," says Cam Heaps, co-chair, Ontario Craft Beer Week and founder, Steam Whistle Brewing. "It's a great way for people to experience the flavour and fun of craft beer and celebrate the success of our homegrown industry."

Last year's Ontario Craft Beer Week 2012 saw 23 breweries hold 120+ events in 25+ towns and cities across the province. For the past four years, OCB Week has grown in size and scope, with more breweries, pubs and people participating in craft beer events and tastings. This year's beer week promises plenty of unique opportunities, such as:

Father's Day celebrations: Take Dad to your local craft brewery or Father's Day event
Visit your local brewery: Tours, tastings and meet the people behind the brands; brewmasters, owners, sales and production people

Craft beer 101: experience beer tastings and food pairings with the experts, including cheese, BBQ & chocolate

One-offs, cask & collaborations: Taste new, creative and collaborative brews not normally available
Craft beer and music: Battle of the Brewery Bands and other indie music events

Large-scale tasting festivals: Toronto Wine & Spirits Festival, Beach BBQ & Brews Festival at Woodbine Park and the official closing event, SESSION 99, A Craft Beer Festival, this year to be held at Artscape's Wychwood Barns

Pub crawls: Grab your buds and taste your way through multiple craft-friendly licensees
Brewery Tours: Sign up for a personalized regional beer tour, such as: the Old Toronto Beer Tour™ by Toronto Beer Lovers Tour Co., http://www.beerloverstour.com/toronto.html OR Ontario Group of Touring Companies, Ontario Craft Brewery Tours http://www.ontariogroupoftouringcompanies.com/en-CA/ontario-craft-brewery-tours/

Collaboration is a key theme of OCB Week. Ontario Craft breweries and their brewers will partner together to host events, make new beers and have fun. There will be many new, one-off beers, casks and special brewery collaboration beers for consumers to taste.

"OCB Week also exemplifies the close community that exists within Ontario's craft brewing industry," says Abrams. "It's a great way for consumers to rub shoulders - and raise elbows -- with members of the craft brewing industry".

First round of event listings will be posted on May 1st, 2013 at www.ocbweek.ca or visit www.ontariocraftbrewers.com

Interested parties with event ideas or requests should contact their local brewery or send an email to ocbweek@ontariocraftbrewers.com.

"Plan your trip to Ontario in June," says Heaps. "And discover the great taste of Ontario and its thriving craft beer culture."

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