Cask Days gets a whole lot bigger for 2012
Cask Days, a festival founded in 2005, started as a small but enthusiastic tribute to cask-conditioned ale-beer that's unfiltered and unpasteurized and allowed to mature via secondary fermentation in a cask. Now in their eighth year, Cask Days' organizers are ambitiously looking to build on what has arguably already become one of the Canadian craft beer industry's most popular events by hosting their homage to cask at a new and bigger venue, inviting a number of local artists, showcasing a handful of DJs, and serving food prepared by some of the city's most buzz-worthy chefs.
Tomas Morana, co-owner and creative director of Cask Days, is optimistic that the inclusion of artists this year will bring the event to another level. "We wanted to create a new vibe at a beer festival that's different from what you usually experience," he told me. "This year we are introducing a new gallery space within the festival which will run throughout all the sessions. It will showcase some of our favourite local visual artists (comic, typographic and graffiti based) alongside some beer-label artwork by Jordan Bamforth (from Beau's All Natural Brewing Company) and Yannick Brosseau (from Dieu Du Ciel brasserie). Elicser and Jimmy Chiale will also be doing some live painting which is going to be dope, and we're planning a silent auction for most of the work to help raise money for The Remix Project."
And naturally, when festivities kick off at the Evergreen Brickworks on Friday October 27th, the art, music, and food will be accompanied by an epic lineup of beers comprising 75 different brewers from across Canada pouring over 150 cask-conditioned ales, one-offs, and collaboration ales-including some gluten-free offerings and ciders.
The list of beers, which was just released on Monday, includes a few intriguing local offerings like:
- "Double Barrel Pumpkin Abbey," a belgian strong from Indie Alehouse;
- "Full City Tempest" an imperial coffee stout Amsterdam Brewing Company;
- "Hellwoods," a Russian imperial stout from Bellwoods Brewery;
- "Stalin's Choice," a bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout from Great Lakes Brewery;
- "Local Option Ale, " an American pale ale from Junction Craft Brewing;
- "Fisheye-Pa," an India Pale Ale from Kensington Brewing Company;
- "Paradise Pale Ale" an American pale ale from Mill Street; and
- "Top Hat Ale" a gluten-free English Amber Ale from Snowman Brewing.
And this is just a sample of some of the offerings from Toronto brewers. Rounding out the list are a number of Ontario micro-brewers as well as selections from British Columbia, Manitoba, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia.
Accompanying the beer will be food selected by Guy Rawlings of Brockton General and Bellwoods Brewery fame; whose list of vendors already includes Grand Electric, who will be making their first appearance outside of their busy Parkdale restaurant.
The festival, running from 12pm Saturday until 5pm Sunday, is divided in three "sessions;" 12pm-5pm Saturday, 7pm-midnight Saturday, and 12pm-5pm Sunday. Attendance for each session will cost you $35.00 (tickets still available online or in person at barVolo) and while that $35 gets you a commemorative 8th Annual Cask Days 2012 souvenir pint glass and four beer sample tokens, you can probably plan on this being an expensive outing. The beer tokens are only good for a quarter of a pint and if you want extra ones (which you will), they'll run you $2.50 each, so bring your wallets. And while there is an ATM at the Brickworks, the event is cash only so hit the bank before you go--every minute spent waiting in line at the bank machine is a minute you could be drinking cask ale.
For more information on Cask Days, including a complete list of the beers that will be on hand, visit the Cask Days website.
Photo by keehotee on Flickr