Just like the drink itself, these days there's much more to beer festivals than drinking pints of god-knows-what in some dodgy old sports hall. Once patronised only by balding men sporting pot-bellies, shorts and sandals (with socks of course), a younger crowd along with serious foodies are now likely to be among the clientele.
Where once beer festivals were the exclusive preserve of real ale, at many of them you'll now also find modern, micro-brewed keg beers along with bottles and cans. Many festivals offer third of a pint measures to enable (responsible) sampling of many different beers and the only thing some of them need to catch up on is the right food stalls to enable beer and food matching. Nevertheless it's still one of your best bets for supping new beers, and old favourites, brewed locally or from further afield.... [click headline for more]