The real Oktoberfest ended several days ago, but in Miami the spirit lives on in the third-annual Homebrewers Bash at Lokal this Wednesday and Thursday.
It will be the third year in a row that local homebrewers gather in Coconut Grove and offer free samples of some of the finest brews in town. Each night will feature three brewers. The event kicks off a weekend of nothing but beer that ends with a larger festival nearby, Grovetoberfest in Peacock Park.
This year features six area homebrewing clubs, some from as far away as Palm Beach County. The clubs participating this year are Wild Oak Artisan Ales, 3 Sons Brewing, 2LiveBrews, Invasive Species Brewing, Wasassa Brewing, and Daddy Brews, which is actually a homebrew supply store but whose owner, Jacob Lindsay, prolifically brews his own at the shop.
Wild Oak, which is run by former Brewzzi brewer Matt Manthe, is known for its funky bottled saisons. The 2LiveBrews club comes out of Broward County and is run by Plantation resident Ross Allen. And Josh Levitt, who works for Brown Distributing, runs Invasive Species Brewing.
And two other brewing clubs, 3 Sons and Wasassa, will be pouring as well.
The Homebrewers Bash is sort of a kickoff to Grovetoberfest, according to Lokal manager David Rodriguez, who says it's also somewhat of a proving ground for up-and-coming commercial breweries. This year, 3 Sons, known for stouts, has a good shot at becoming a full-fledged production brewery, according to Rodriguez.
Each brewer will bring two to three kegs, which will be set up outside. Free samples of each beer will be available for customers at Lokal.
"Each year, all kegs have kicked," Rodriguez says, meaning all kegs have been completely drained within hours. That's not surprising considering MIami's growing thirst for craft beer. "There are so many freakin' breweries that want to come down here."
The Homebrewers Bash begins at 6 p.m. each day and goes till 11 p.m. or until the kegs kick -- whichever comes first.
Though the beer is free, Rodriguez says the homebrewers wouldn't mind if you left tips. After all, homebrewing is an expensive hobby.