Craft Beer at the Great New York State Fair

We must have beer festivals on the brain lately, or perhaps said fests are just in a New York state of mind. Over the past month or so…

The Empire State Brewing and Music Festival hit Syracuse on July 20…
Belgium came to Cooperstown on July 21…
Rochester’s 11th annual Flour City Brewers Festival took place on July 29…
We recently mentioned Saratoga’s (admittedly small time) 10th Annual Battle of the Brews, held on August 24…
As well as the inaugural (and very promising) Ithaca Brewfest, scheduled for September 8…
August 26 marked the 6th annual Buffalo Brewfest

Pretty impressive run, no? It’s been hectic enough that we probably missed an event or two in there, but you get the point; it has been quite a summer. Anyway, now comes word, courtesy of Rick Lyke, that the New York State Brewer’s Association will have a booth at the State Fair in Syracuse. The stated goal is to “showcase the 59 breweries in the state and educate the public on the economic importance of brewing.”

A different brewery will be featured daily, with 2 oz. samples from that brewery given to adults of legal age from 4 – 6 pm. Granted, it’s a small step, but the New York State Fair does draw over a million visitors annually. In our experience, many of these folks are not opposed to free samples of just about anything.

It won’t change the world (or even the state) over the course of a week and a half, but let’s remember that craft beer is a segment of the market that currently owns about 5% of overall beer sales by dollar amount. Every little bit of exposure to the habitual Bud or Miller drinker counts for something. Seriously, this may prove to be a very good thing. Just one more reason to lament having been passed over a State Fair assignment at work again this year.


~ by bojangles on August 27, 2007.

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