6 best craft beer & spirits events across WV
As West Virginia’s craft beer and spirits scene has grown, so have events to celebrate these handcrafted flavors.
Some of these events have been around for years, and others are just starting to take off. New this year is Craft Beer Week. As the list of breweries, wineries, and distilleries continues to grow, we expect many more exciting events to come.
Here are some of the best craft beer and spirits events in West Virginia (so far!), both old and new:
1. Mountaineer Brewfest
August, Wheeling, WV
Mountaineer Brewfest celebrates West Virginia’s finest craft breweries. Brewmasters from around the state will showcase their craft at the scenic Heritage Port in Wheeling, WV. This event includes craft beer samples, brewing competitions, artisan food and merchant vendors, a craft beer garden and live music and entertainment.
Mountaineer Brewfest is an official event of West Virginia Craft Beer Week.
2. West Virginia Wine & Jazz Festival
September, Morgantown, WV
A 2-day event every September just outside of Morgantown at Camp Muffly, the West Virginia Wine & Jazz Festival celebrates West Virginia wines, spirits and more. Now approaching its 20th year, this festival boasts much more than wine. Local foods, crafts and music come together to make the event one of the best in the state.
Music the festival features both local and national acts, with performances by the West Virginia University and West Virginia Wesleyan jazz ensembles and the Bob Thompson Unit. Some proceeds from the West Virginia Wine & Jazz Festival help send WVU musicians to perform at schools throughout West Virginia.
3. Brew Skies Festival
August, Canaan Valley, WV
Organized and sponsored by Mountain State Brewing Company, the Brew Skies Festival in Canaan Valley celebrates the music and brewing heritage of West Virginia. Make a weekend out of it and take advantage of the family friendly environment. Both national and local music acts participate every year, as well as artisans and food vendors.
This year, 9 West Virginia breweries will be on site, offering samples and even performing homebrewing demonstrations. The event is a fun way for West Virginia breweries to collaborate and support each other as the industry takes off in the Mountain State.
4. A Taste of Parkersburg
June, Parkersburg, WV
Every year in May, an eclectic collection of tastes come together outside Parkersburg’s historic Blennerhassett Hotel to showcase wine, beer and food from across the region. Taste of Parkersburg began in 2006 and has always offered an exciting mix of food, wine and music, and in recent years, they’ve added craft beer. An art tent is another new feature that makes the event a well-rounded project that unites the Parkersburg community and shows visitors the region’s creative spirit and culinary offerings.
5. Rails and Ales Craft Beer Festival
August, Huntington, WV
With 2 years under its belt, Huntington’s Rails and Ales festival has more than doubled in size. To accommodate the growing demand, Rails and Ales will be moving to Harris Riverfront Park. More than 100 craft and import beers will be available, including West Virginia beers brewed exclusively for Rails and Ales.
Organized by the Better Beer Coalition, the event was created to promote craft beer culture. It also aims to bring more diverse brews to the area by showing micro breweries and distributors that West Virginians are thirsty for more options!
6. Brewery and Distillery Tours & Tastings
Can’t wait for these tasty events to come around? The good news is you can create your own! Most West Virginia breweries, wineries and distilleries offer tours and tastings. Pick your favorite and plan a trip! At stops like Smooth Ambler Spirits, Mountain State Brewing Company or Heston Farm Winery, you’ll be able to quench your thirst for authentic West Virginia beer and spirits anytime you want.
What’s your favorite West Virginia craft beverage?