Okanagan Fest of Ale coming up in Penticton

Suds to sip this spring

With the popular Fest of Ale preparing to pour craft brews and ciders from around the province in Penticton on April 12 and 13, plus the weather already pointing towards 20 C days, it feels like a good time to ponder ales and more.

The Okanagan Fest of Ale was founded in 1996 making it one of the largest and longest-running annual beer festivals in the Pacific Northwest. Operated by a non-profit society, $800,000 in event proceeds has been gifted to qualifying registered charities and other not-for-profit societies.

Just by sipping samples of suds, attendees support numerous community initiatives, while also raising a glass to the craft beverage industry.

Close to 70 beer and cider producers will show off their creations this year for a total of around 225 tastings available, so sample responsibly. There will also be live entertainment and a plethora of food choices.

As for the stars of the show, here are a few brews to seek out.

Howling Moon Craft Cider from Oliver will have its Lavender Plum Craft Cider. Described as a fragrant floral cider, made with heritage apples and an infusion of Italian plums and English lavender, the cidery suggests pairing it with a ham quiche.

Coming from Prince Rupert, Wheelhouse Brewing Co. is bringing three brews, and the most intriguing one may be its All Inclusive Pineapple Coconut Sour, while the Bramble - Raspberry Vanilla Wheat Ale from Prince George’s Trench Brewing and Distilling sounds equally compelling.

From the Okanagan, Kelowna’s Barn Owl Brewing Co. will put Escape (The Pina Colada Sour) up against Penticton’s Barley Mill Brew Pub’s Nitemare Brown Ale, Love Potion – Raspberry Berliner Vice from Kelowna’s Vice & Virtue Brewing Co. and a non-alcoholic Peach Cream Ale from Penticton’s Tin Whistle Brewing Co. up for votes in the People’s Choice award category.

Local favourite Cannery Brewing will have four brews at the Fest this year, including its Penticton Vees Lakeboat Lager, a special edition beer that just returned to the brewery’s lineup, paying tribute to the Penticton Vees hockey team.

On International Women's Day last month, the women of Cannery Brewing and a couple of special guests got together to brew a new Pink Boots fundraiser beer. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this beer will go to the Pink Boots Society which helps women beer professionals pursuing their education.

A West Coast Pilsner, Pink Boots will be launched at the Fest of Ale on April 12, when It will also be available in the Cannery Brewing taproom and at select private liquor stores in four-packs of 473ml cans.

With so many choices, it’ll be easy to sip for a good cause this spring.

This article is written by or on behalf of an outsourced columnist and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

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About the Author

A creative thinker with more than two decades of experience in communications, Allison is an early adopter of social and digital media, bringing years of work in traditional media to the new frontier of digital engagement marketing through her company, All She Wrote.

She is the winner of the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association's 2011 and 2012 awards for Social Media Initiative, an International LERN award for marketing, and the 2014 Penticton Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Award for Hospitality/Tourism.

Allison has amassed a following on multiple social networks of more than 30,000, frequently writes and about social media, food and libations as well as travel and events, and through her networks, she led a successful bid to bring the Wine Bloggers Conference to Penticton in June 2013, one of the largest social media wine events in the world, generating 31 million social media impressions, $1 million in earned media, and an estimated ongoing economic impact of $2 million.

In 2014, she held the first Canadian Wine Tourism Summit to spark conversation about the potential for wine tourism in Canada as a year-round economic driver.

Allison contributes epicurean content to several publications, has been a judge for several wine and food competitions, and has earned her advanced certificate from the Wine and Spirit Education Trust.

In her spare time, she has deep, meaningful conversations with her cats.

She can be reached at [email protected]

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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