A Real Beer Festival comes to Oahu

On Saturday, July 27th, Oahu will host its first Real Beer Festival. Organized by Real a Gastropub, the event brings in more than 60 beers, many that have never before been available in Hawaii. Beer, food, music, what’s not to love? Some tips on enjoying (and surviving) the festival:

  • Be prepared: Purchase your tickets online before the event. Who wants to stand in line for tickets when you could be tasting beers?
  • How to get there: There will be plenty of parking in the parking lot next to TJ Maxx. But even better, get a designated driver to pick you up or take advantage of the taxi stand that will be located at the end of Ward Warehouse near Menchies. Many of the beers that will be served are high in alcohol; you might get drunk faster than you think.
  • Get there early: Plan on getting there early so you can get in when the gates open at 2 p.m. The earlier you get in, the more time you have to eat and drink.
  • Remember your ID: No ID = no entry. No excuses, you’ve been warned.
  • Plan your attack: Each festival ticket includes eight tasting tickets and a commemorative mug. There will be more than 60 beers available so you’ll have to narrow your choices down. I’ll be hitting the local Hawaii breweries first, which will be sampling some of their newer/seasonal brews, such as:
    Hawaiian Island Brewing Co., pouring a Mango Wheat Ale
    Maui Brewing Co., pouring HI Standards IPA
    Aloha Beer Co., pouring its new Gose-style beer

    Then, pick out some of the breweries that you can’t normally find in Hawaii like Stone, Green Flash, Breckenridge Brewery and Pizza Port. I’m looking forward to trying Pizza Port’s Saison Du Mule & Dawn Patrol Dark Mild.

    The great thing about beer festivals is that it allows you to try new beers and find new favorites. I plan on sampling Anchor Steam’s Zymaster Series #4 Fort Ross Farmhouse Ale. Check out the complete list of breweries and the beers they will be pouring at: https://www.facebook.com/RealBeerFestival2013

    Eight tickets not enough? There will be extra drink tickets available for purchase for $2.

  • Water and food: Your ticket includes unlimited food tastings from 15 restaurants including Roy’s, Town, Side Street Inn, Murphy’s, J.J. Dolan’s, Tiki’s and Fire House, cooking up its chicken kelaguan tacos.

    Bring a water bottle: There will be water stations throughout the festival. You can also buy bottled water at the T-shirt booth.

  • Still not enough beer? Real a Gastropub will be open during the festival and is planning on tapping a number of rare and special kegs including the newly released Black Butte XXV from Deschutes Brewing. You'll be allowed to go in and out of the festival as long as you keep your wristband on.

$60, Saturday July 27, 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., tickets available at realbeerfestival.eventbrite.com

Timothy Golden is a homebrewer and beer lover. Find more of his writing on Hawaii’s beer scene at beerinhawaii.com