Philly Beer Week 2012: Our Guide To Philadelphia’s Fifth Annual 10-Day Beer Festival, Returning June 1-10

Below, we present Philly Beer Week 101: plan often and plan early — with hundreds of beer week events, we're here to help you find some of the best. Stay tuned all Beer Week long. (Photos by G. Widman for GPTMC)

Philadelphia is quickly becoming one of the most recognized suds scenes in the entire world, home to dozens of craft breweries and having been crowned “the best beer-drinking city in America.”

Local beer has become a must on Philadelphia restaurant and bar menus, and lay beer enthusiasts have begun a mini-revolution in home brewing.

From June 1-10, just days away, see why beer lovers from around the globe are heading to Philly with 10 days of special dinners and tastings, tours of Philadelphia’s best pubs and breweries, home-brewing technique demos, dedicated beer festivals and much more.

Since Philly Beer Week’s inception five years ago, more than 50 other U.S. cities have copied Philadelphia’s success to launch their own beer weeks.

Check out how the pros do it with our Philly Beer Week 2012 bird’s-eye-view guide, below.

Use this primer as a starting point, and stay tuned for more Beer Week coverage here on Uwishunu in the days and weeks to come. These are the really big events you don’t want to miss, but there’s lots more where this came from. Also be sure to check out Visit Philly’s guide to Beer Week.

With Love Beer Garden: June 4-8, 5-9 p.m. Four Seasons Philadelphia, 1 Logan Square. Pay as you go. Beer Week Central (unofficially) will once again be the With Love Beer Garden, returning triumphantly to the Four Seasons Hotel courtyard June 4-8, 5-9 p.m. Each day, a different local brewery will be featured, bringing a selection of their craft brews for guest to enjoy. That’s in addition to a nightly rotating menu of tasty bites. Stay tuned for more.

Philly Beer Week Opening Tap: Friday, June 1, 7 p.m. Independence Visitor Center, 6th and Market Streetes. $40 ($25 designated drivers). This is the official opening festival of the week, taking place once again at the Independence Visitor Center. Witness the arrival of the legendary Hammer of Glory; raise a toast with your favorite beer from one of 30+ local breweries; watch Mayor Nutter smash open the first official keg of the week: Brotherly Suds 3; all to the tune of live music.

Craft Beer Day On East Passyunk: Sunday, June 3, 11 a.m.-2 a.m. Along East Passyunk Avenue. Pay as you go. East Passyunk in South Philly is kicking off Philly Beer Week with a full 15-hour day of craft beer events. Try new eats, meet brewers and quench your thirst for craft beer. Nine East Passyunk bars are hosting events all day, from beer brunch to home brew demos to beer-bucket-and-pizza-deals to “Meet the Brewer” happy hours.

Fourth Annual Great Beer Expo: Saturday, June 2, VIP session at 12:30 p.m., general admission at 1:30 p.m., event goes until 5 p.m. Navy Yard. $75 for VIP, $46 for G.A., $10 for designated drivers. 50+ breweries from across the globe (Belgium, Germany, Japan and more) return to Philadelphia for the Fourth Annual International Great Beer Expo. The event will be held (rain or shine) outdoors under tents on the Marine Parade Grounds at the Navy Yard. There will be plenty of water and food available for purchase as well.

More, below.

Forum of the Gods: Wednesday, June 6, 2 p.m. Philadelphia Bar and Restaurant, 120 Market Street. $25. Philly Beer Week’s signature roundtable features beer world luminaries, moderated by beer reporter and Beer Week executive director Joe Sixpack. Ticket includes seating and samples of extraordinary, extremely hard-to-find ales and lagers from select breweries.

Sansom Street Block Party in University City: Thursday, June 7, 3 p.m.-midnight. 34th and Sansom Streets. Pay as you go. New Deck Tavern, White Dog and Baby Blues BBQ shut down Sansom for live music (reggae, blues and rock) on a big stage, local craft beers served from beer trucks and dancing in the street. They will be serving beers and food outside from 3 p.m.-midnight. Part of the proceeds will be going to Philadelphia Police and Fire Survivors Fund, Children’s Hospital of Pennsylvania and Fair Foods.

Pizzeria Stella’s Italian Beer Garden: Thursday, June 7, 5-10 p.m. 2nd and Lombard Streets. Pay as you go. Stephen Starr’s Stella gets in on the Beer Week action with an outdoor Beer Garden under the Headhouse Square Shambles. Try a sausage sandwich, home-made meatballs or a porchetta panini with Italian zeppoles or gelato for dessert. Choose from Italian craft beers, or stick with our favorite local beer, Victory Summer Love. There’s also Victory root beer and fresh lemonade for the kids. Plus a live accordian player, face-painter, balloon artist and bocce ball tournament.

Fishtown FestivALE: Saturday, June 9, noon-8 p.m. N. Frankford Avenue. Pay as you go. Johnny Brenda’s and Frankford Hall are teaming up to bring you a outdoor beer party with DJs, dunk tank and more. Can you say “epic”? We can.

2nd Annual Fried Chicken Run at American Sardine Bar: Saturday, June 9, 3-8 p.m. 1800 Federal Street. $35.Join the Fishtown Beer Runners for a run from Philly Brewing Company to the American Sardine Bar in South Philly. Price of the run include a T-Shirt, 3 PBC beers and a fried chicken all-you-can-gorge-yourself-on buffet. (Rest assured, there will be a vegetarian option.) Call or visit American Sardine Bar to purchase tickets.

Dock Street Philly Beer Run & Music Fest: Sunday, June 10, 2-7 p.m. 701 S. 50th Street. Pre-registration $35, on-site registration $40. Entry to music festival is free. Bryan Kolesar of The Brew Lounge returns as Race Director for a 5-K B-Tag timed race beginning and ending at Dock Street Brewing Company and looping through University City. All runners receive a token limited-edition pint glass, refreshments from Vita Coco, fruit, snacks and pizza/beer coupons. Plus, a free Dock Street Philly Beer Run t-shirt to the first 100 registered runners. The run ends at the Annual Free Dock Street Music Festival featuring amazing local music including O’Death and headliner Hoots & Hellmouth.

Varga Bar’s 3rd Annual Pints and Pinups Block Party: Saturday, June 2, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. 10th and Spruce Streets. Pay as you go. Varga shuts down Spruce Street once again for the Pints and Pinups Block Party. They will BBQ-ing outside, and hosting hot dog and wing eating contests with great prizes awarded. It’s also the first day of the 2013 Varga Bar Calendar Girl Search. Great domestic craft beers will, of course, be tapped; about 22 total. Don’t get dunked in the dunk tank…

The official Philly Beer Week website has comprehensive info on the hundreds of events taking place throughout the festival. Download Philly Beer Week’s official app for a searchable, customizable mobile event guide.

Start getting thirsty!

Philly Beer Week 2012
When: June 1-10
Where: Locations throughout the city
Cost: Varies based on event
More info:


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