Whatever your preference — from beer and burgers to barbecue and bourbon — there's a festival for you. Here's
10. Miami Beer Festival
The fourth-annual Miami Beer Festival, held at Marlins Park Saturday, January 30, features dozens of craft breweries offering their wares. Local breweries include Concrete Beach, Spanish Marie, Miami Brewing Co., King Fox, Islamorada, and LauderAle. In addition to lots of beer, there are live DJs and food trucks for your listening and chewing pleasure. The festival runs from 6 to 9 p.m., and tickets cost $40 for general admission and $50 for VIP (which includes an additional hour of drinking, with some special beers poured the first hour). Food is not included and can be purchased separately. Tickets are available at miamibeerfestival.com.
9. Taste of Brickell
First Presbyterian Church of Miami (609 Brickell Ave.)
The Taste of Brickell celebrates its fifth anniversary this spring. Some of Brickell's best-loved restaurants — Bavaria Haus, Taverna Opa, Burrito San, and many others — will participate. The food and wine festival, which runs from 1 to 9 p.m., is one of Miami's best values because it costs only $5 per person to attend and enjoy live music, an automotive showcase, and a cigar bar. Pay as you go for food and drinks. Tickets are available at tasteofbrickell.com.
8. Miami Whiskey Mash
Taurus Beer & Whiskey House
This event showcases whiskeys from around the globe. More than a dozen exhibitors will present 80-plus expressions of spirits from Ireland, Scotland, Canada, Japan, and America, with unlimited sampling opportunities. The Miami Whiskey Mash is organized by Creative Alchemy Group, the same people who produce Miami's Craft Spirits Festival. Frank Moreno, partner at Creative Alchemy, thought it was time to delve deeper into whiskies. "The Miami Whiskey Mash is a natural progression in what we do to promote spirits and cocktail appreciation though the annual Craft Spirits Festival," he says. "The craftsmanship, the authenticity, the traditions that are associated with whiskey deserves its own focused event." Tickets cost $60 each and include unlimited tastings and light bites from 3 to 6 p.m. VIP tickets include entry at 2 p.m. and cost $75. Early-bird tickets are available for $30 until January 15. Purchase tickets at miamiwhiskeymash.com.
Sprung is the spring break of beer festivals. This suds-fueled afternoon doesn't take itself too seriously, highlighting giant Jenga and human bowling as features as much as its selection of beers. But that doesn't mean the beers aren't worthy of a true aficionado. Organizer Tony Albelo, creator of fall's Grovetoberfest, brings a roster of great brewers to Coconut Grove for Sprung — including an impressive number of local and regional beers. It's just that Albelo and his team like to temper their craft beer with copious amounts of fun. Sprung, usually held at Coconut Grove's Peacock Park, is changing venues this year, so ticket prices, times, and the exact location have yet to be announced. The date, however, has been confirmed: April 1 — April Fool's Day. What better way to celebrate beer than with a side of laughter? Check for updates at igotsprung.com.
6. Bourbon, Burgers, and Beast
Magic City Casino
Burger Beast is at it again with a combination burger competition and bourbon tasting. A dozen restaurants will offer their best burgers — each paired with a fine bourbon. From 7 to 10 p.m., enjoy some fine burgers and spirits. After feasting on meat and whiskey, you'll be able to cast your vote for the most satisfying combo. Miami's best restaurants — including 27 Restaurant & Bar, Beaker & Gray, Edge Steak & Bar, Finka Table & Tap, Izzy's Fish & Oyster, Haven, and the Local — will participate. Tickets cost $37.92 and are available at