THERE is something brewing in Ballarat.
In the past few months, Victoria’s most renowned brewers have been working tirelessly to perfect their craft in time to unveil their produce at the fourth annual Ballarat Beer Festival.
Early bird tickets for the beer extravaganza went on sale on Monday and festival director Tim Kearney said the event on January 24 is expected to attract the largest crowd on record.
More than 7000 people are expected to descend on the City Oval with 35 breweries signed up and 15 gourmet food stalls already locked in to showcase the best produce the region has to offer.
Mr Kearney said there would be more than 100 different craft beers and ciders on offer to cater for an eclectic mix of palates.
“The festival is a platform to showcase what they do and the best they have to offer,” Mr Kearney said.
“This year we have focused on ensuring there is more family focused entertainment to encourage people of all different demographics to attend. There will be roving entertainment all day, a children’s corner and the biggest range of food and drinks we’ve ever had.”
He said there would also be a new musical line-up which would include folk, soul and R&B acts, including blues musician Ash Grunwuld and Melbourne based nine-piece soul act Clairy Browne and The Bangin’ Racettes performing.
“There will be more exciting acts announced in the lead-up to the event,” Mr Kearney said.
Fellow festival director Kate Burrows said the decision had been made to move the festival to the Australia Day weekend to encourage more people to make a weekend of the event.
“It gives the experts and industry a chance to stand out from the crowd,” Ms Burrows said.
“We will have an incredibly flavorous compilation of beverages on offer next year.”
Ms Burrows said there would also be a pre-festival dinner held on the oval the night before with special guest celebrity chef Stefano De Pieri.
Other special guests attending the festival include Rebellion Brewery’s Andrew Lavery.
As well as beverage tasting, beer enthusiasts will also be treated to education sessions run by experienced brewers who will reveal their honed knowledge of the craft.
The event will be held on January 24 at the City Oval on the corner of Pleasant and Mair streets, Ballarat, from 11am until 8pm.
To buy tickets, call 132 849 or visit ticketek.com.au