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Craft Brewers Conference Brings Best in Beer to Chicago

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Apr 5, 2010 6:20PM


In this recession, craft beer has become a success story. The combination of more breweries and a better educated consumer have resulted locally in a brewing renaissance that shows no signs of ebbing soon. the Brewers Association is holding the biennial World Beer Cup in Chicago this week, and its annual Craft Brewers Conference at the Sheraton Hotel and Towers from Wednesday to Saturday. With crowds five deep around the bar at Revolution Brewing, Half Acre installing its canning operation, Metropolitan chugging along, Haymarket Pub and Brewing targeting an autumn opening and sales of Stone Brewing's beers making Chicago their fifth-strongest market in 2010 after one week, the timing couldn't be any more perfect to for brewers and sales reps around the country to see what a market Chicago could be for them.

The conference itself is long sold out, but a litany of events are happening around town this week which should appeal to even fans of the High Life. We've compiled some of our recommendations after the jump. For the full list of events, view the PDF file here.


Two Brothers Brewing and the Publican will introduce their collaborative beer at a dinner this evening. The five-course meal costs $75 and will be served between 5;30-10:30 p.m. (837 W. Fulton Market, 312-733-9555).


Clark Street Ale House (742 N. Clark St., 312-642-9253) has a rare beer tapping starting at 6 p.m. featuring Allagash Curieux, Bear Republic Crazy Ivan, boulder Oak Aged "Mojo Risin'" Double IPA, green Flash Belgian Stout and Two Brothers Paradise Stout

The monthly tasting at the Bluebird (1749 N. Damen, 312-217-3349) will feature selections from California's The Bruery. $25, includes passed flatbreads. the tasting runs from 7:30-9:30 p.m.

The second annual Dogfloydapalooza goes down at Bottom Lounge (1375 W. Lake St., 312-666-6775) from 9 p.m. - 2 a.m. Dogfish Head's Sam Calagione and head Floyd Nick Floyd will be in attendance, with music provided by Jon Langford's Cash Johnnies and Andre Williams and the Goldstars. Tickets are $20 in advance.


Mrs. Murphy & Sons Irish Bistro (3905 N. Lincoln, 773-248-3905) has declared this night Lagunitas Beer night.

Erin Phillips of Brasserie JO (59 W. Hubbard, 312-595-0800) will be tapping Stone's Cali-Belgique IPA, The Bruery's Mélange #3, Two Brothers oak-aged Can & Ebel, Moylan's Wet Hopsickle '09 and Ska Strong Foreign Stout aged in merlot casks. The tapping commences at 6 p.m.


Hopleaf has a beer dinner every night this week. The one we'd be most interested in — if we weren't attending the sold-out Stone-Jolly Pumpkin-Nøgne Ø dinner at Blackbird — would be Hopleaf's Vanberg & DeWulf beer dinner from 5-11 p.m.

Cobra Lounge is getting in on the CBC act, featuring Ska Brewing Co. Beers on all taps, specials on all Ska cans, and music (ska, natch) provided by the Pinstripes (235 N. Ashland, 312-226-6300) starting at 8 p.m.

The Local Option (1102 W. Webster) will feature beers from Shelton Brothers distribution all day. This can also give you an excuse to visit Kith & Kin across the street.


Goose Island Clybourn (1800 N. Clybourn) will be serving up Boulder oak-aged Mojo IPA, green Flash 7th Anniversary Ale, Two Brothers Project 31, Surly Furious Firkin, and Great Divide Espresso Oak-aged Yeti, starting at 6 p.m.

Metropolitan will host a rare beer tapping at Jake Melnick's Corner tap (41 E. Superior, 312-280-4084) starting at 7 p.m.