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Held at Bandshell Park in Exhibition Place, this summer marked the 19th year of Toronto’s Festival of Beer (@TOBeerFestival). It also marked my first year checking it out and you can bet I’ll be back again next year.

Beer Fest

The outdoor festival was held at the end of July and featured over 60 brewers with over 200 brands onsite from all over the world.

Beer Fest

In order to sample any beer, tokens had to be purchased for $1 each. While there were some brewers which charged more, most brewers charged one token for half a glass (4oz) and two for a full glass (8oz).


There was some great local representation at the festival including the likes of the Hogtown Brewers, Left Field Brewery, Wellington Brewery and Kensington Brewing Company. The festival is a great opportunity to give smaller brewers exposure. There were many I’ve never heard of and the festival was a good chance to sample some of their offerings.

The “Local” Tent

In addition to some local brewers, there were some big names and European brewers like Pilsner Urquell, Stiegl, Erdinger and Krombacher.

Beer Fest

There was something for everyone…even for non-beer drinkers! I was impressed by the selection of ciders (including Foundry and Somersby to name a few) and gluten-free options at the festival.

Somersby Blackberry Cider

The festival also featured a stage with live entertainment which included performances from the Spin Doctors and Big Sugar over the weekend.

The music stage

So they’ve got beer and entertainment covered. The last thing you’d need is food and they had that covered too with a roster that included Fidel Gastro, Smoke’s Poutinerie, Pizzeria Libretto, Melt Grilled Cheese and many more.

Smoke’s Poutinerie

Here’s a look at a few things we sampled, starting with the Bacon on a Bun – British-style with brown sauce ($6) from Rashers (@RashersTO) which has a bacon sandwich shop over in Leslieville.

Although the bun was on the small side for the price, it was certainly delicious. The bacon had nice crisp edges while a little soft in the centre – just how I like it! Rahshers makes their own brown sauce which they say has over 25 ingredients in it. It tasted similar to HP sauce and went perfectly with the bacon.

Bacon on a Bun from Rashers

Our next stop was the Real Jerk (@RealJerkToronto) who had a whole BBQ going. After mulling over the menu, we decided to go with the ¼ Jerk Chicken ($5).

The Real Jerk

The rub was tasty and had just the right amount of kick. I washed it all down with some beer and off we were to the next food vendor!

1/4 Jerk Chicken from the Real Jerk

We stumbled along the Rock Lobster (@RockLobsterFood) tent and decided to pick up a Lobster Roll ($5). It’s basically a mini lobster roll which consists of two bites. Trust me, this little tease will leave you wanting more!

Lobster Roll from Rock Lobster

Our last food stop was Campagnolo (@Campagnolo_) where they were selling Meatballs – with ragu and bread ($6). Delicious, moist and perfectly seasoned!

Meatballs from Campagnolo

Good beer, good company and good food. I couldn’t think of a better way to spend an afternoon. I’m already looking forward to next year’s beer fest!

Beer me!

  1. Teena in Toronto (Reply) on Wednesday 14, 2013

    We went on the Friday evening … it was fun!

    • Jess (Reply) on Wednesday 14, 2013

      It was so much fun. I can’t believe it was only my first year!