Tips for Attending a Beer Festival in Chicago

Like beer, beer festivals are a glorious gift from God. But like all good things, too much can kill you – or at least give you a killer hangover.

The American Beer Classic (ABC) returns to Soldier Field today and with 100 breweries and 500 unique brews, it’s larger than most beer festivals in Chicago. To avoid being a drunken dude wandering around Soldier Field, take a page from the Boy Scout handbook and “Be Prepared.”


Beer Festival Preparedness Tips

Prioritize and pace yourself! Start with a list of 10 breweries or beers, and then grab a bite to eat, look at the non-beer vendors, or if you're at ABC, take a stadium tour. Repeat as necessary. 

It’s okay to dump out a beer you don’t like. Instead of justifying a beer you don’t like, use the dump buckets and save your taste buds.

Make a pretzel necklace. Pretzels help cleans your palate and put a small amount of food in your belly. What could be better? (Note: Man cannot live on pretzels alone, so eat real food two.)

Make no small plans for Sunday. Sunday will probably consist of brunch, water and the TV on a very low volume. Beyond this, proceed with caution.

Take pictures and ask questions. Brewery reps are excited to talk about their beer, so take pictures of the tap handles and ask where you can buy a six-pack. (Spoiler: the answer will probably be Binny’s.)


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Joe Piehl

Joe Piehl is no longer associated with The Local Tourist.

1410 S Museum Campus Dr, Chicago, IL 60605
Soldier Field is home to the Chicago Bears and also hosts several events, races, and concerts throughout the year.
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