For beer lover’s in Ireland your calendar is now well and truly full. Over the summer season rarely a weekend goes by without some kind of beer event taking place. In the last few months we have seen meet the brewer nights with the mighty Stone brewing. Whitehag throw an epic birthday bash the Hagstravaganza which involved a very unique train journey and the always innovative Whiplash took over an off licence for a beer launch #BAGOFCANS. A full and deadly case of FOMO is never too far away.
Unfortunately you can’t attend every event your health and bank account just can’t take that kind of punishment, so how do you whittle it down to events you just can’t miss. For the last few year’s I’ve been using a home and away format. One local beer festival and one I travel too. Luckily for me the closest beer festival to me is also located in one of favourite places in the world west Clare the Doolin Beer and Roots festival . Of course I am totally biased when it comes to my home county. I have been living in Galway for quite some time now but I never need much of an excuse to visit the Burren or west Clare. On a fine day the coast road from Galway to Doolin is worth the effort alone.
For the last five years the festival a blend of Craft beer and Music has been run by hotel Doolin. Set in the garden and marquee of the Doolin hotel the atmosphere is a heady mix of a boutique music festival with one of the best stocked bars in the west of Ireland. Long German beer hall style tables stretch from one end of the marquee to next where they meet a stage that hosts 3 days of eclectic music,everything from Gypsy jazz to hardcore Irish trad. The majority of the beer on offer is available from the bar with some of the best breweries in Ireland on offer 8degrees, Rascal and Metalman to name a few. The rest of the beer is served by the breweries themselves last year Independent brewing, JJs from County limerick, locals Western Herd and the party animals from the sunny south east Yellowbelly where all pouring and chatting with the punters.
From a beer perspective Yellowbelly stole the show last summer. For the hardcore beer fan they had all bases covered everything from cheek picking sours too 9% cask IPAs. Having the brewers pouring the more challenging styles is a real bonus, pouring samples and talking about the beer gets the punters more involved. The majority of which are not necessarily the hardcore beer fans you’ll find at your more typical beer festival. If you are thinking of attending this year keep an eye out for Western Herd. The local Clare brewery has been growing in confidence over the last year. Two new IPAs Coast road and Cliff road are sure to keep any hop heads more than happy.