Each year, the Pioneer Courthouse Square in Downtown Portland is transformed for the Holiday Ale Festival. It looks so different, that it’s hard to recognize where you are once you’re inside. This festival is one of my favorites, as it showcases rich, seasonal beers from breweries throughout the Pacific Northwest. It’s also the first of many Holiday themed events that go on during the month of December. Find my recommendations for best things to try below, and keep reading to see what kind of fun you could get into while at the fest.
When: November 28th, 2018 through December 2nd, 2018 (11am-9pm each day, 11am-5pm Sunday)
Entry: $40 for a cup and 12 tickets, CASH ONLY
Where: Pioneer Courthouse Square, 701 SW Sixth Ave Portland, Oregon 97204
Best Brews to try at the 2018 Holiday Ale Festival
- 🍺 Cherry Abbey Spice by Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 (5) Spiced Cider, served warm 7.5%
- 🍺 Mexican Hot Chocolate Imperial Stout with Coffee by Fremont Brewing 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4.25) Imperial Oatmeal Stout 8%
- 🍺 Santa Quad is Coming to Town by Gigantic Brewing 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4.25) Bourbon Barrel Aged Grand Cru 10.2%
- 🍺 Après by Migration Brewing 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4.25) Oak Aged Imperial Milk Stout 12%
- 🍺 Chocolate Oyster Stout by Rusty Truck Brewing 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4.25) Chocolate Oyster Stout 7.1%
- 🍺 “Why” Stock Ale by Stoup Brewing 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4.25) Cognac Puncheon Aged Brett Stock Ale 11%
- 🍺 Perry Christmas by Bauman’s Cider 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4) Perry 6.8%
- 🍺 Whack and Unwrap by Ninkasi Brewing 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4) Chocolate Orange Cascadia Dark Ale 6.7%
- 🍺 Cookie Monster by Pelican Brewing 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4) Oatmeal Cookie Brown Ale 6.2%
- 🍺 Hawaiian Christmas by Stormbreaker Brewing 🌟🌟🌟🌟 (4) Imperial Red Ale 8%
The Fun of the 2018 Holiday Ale Festival
SANTA!!! Meeting people at the festival is one of the best parts. The layout of the event makes for close quarters to begin with, but the characters that come out are a delight. Earlier in the week you’ll find industry folks and locals. Later on, the fest fills with those visiting the city and weekend warriors.
Friends make all the difference at the Holiday Ale Festival! There are so many beers to try, that having a buddy or two makes it that much better. I brought along my gal pal, Jessica, this year and we had a blast! We got into the spirit of the event, and dressed up in goofy Holiday sweaters and accessories.
Read more about the festival in write-ups that I’ve done over the last couple years: Holiday Ale Festival 2017 and Holiday Ale Festival 2016. I hope you enjoy the fest! Feel free to share your favorite beers, let’s compare notes. 🍻