2016 Holiday Ale Festival in Portland, Oregon

PORTLAND, Oregon. – The Holiday Ale Festival will officially come of age this year as it celebrates the 21st annual event, Nov. 30 through Dec. 4 at Pioneer Courthouse Square, 701 SW Sixth Ave. Known for assembling a prestigious lineup of winter beers, the festival will feature more than 50 specialty ales that have either been crafted specifically for the event or are hard-to-fine vintages, underscoring the event’s reputation as one of finest gathering of winter beers anywhere in the nation.

Despite being held outdoors during one of the coldest months of the year, nearly 14,000

festival attendees stay warm and dry over the five-day festival under clear-topped tents that cover the venue. Gas heaters create a cozy ambiance beneath the boughs of the region’s largest decorated Christmas tree. In addition to beer tasting, the festival also features meet the brewer events with rare beers, a root beer garden, food vendors, self-guided beer pairings with cheese, event merchandise and a coat/bag check and raffle.
What makes this festival standout from other similar events is the beer selection: the festival works with every brewery involved to make sure they send a beer that has either been made or blended specifically for the event, or is a rare or vintage beer that isn’t commonly tapped in the state. This festival offers the brewers a chance to reward their fans with amazing holiday gifts in the form of one a kind beers. This year’s beer list will be announced in early October.

To enter and consume beer, the purchase of an entry package is required. Advance general admission costs $35 and includes the 2016 tasting cup and 14 taster tickets, plus expedited entry all five days with a print at home ticket. General admission at the door is the same price, but includes only 12 tickets and no expedited entry. Advance VIP packages cost $100 and include the tasting cup, 30 taster tickets, special VIP beer lines with little to no waiting, exclusive VIP only vintage beers, bottled water and express entry all five days (VIP tickets are limited to 250 and are not available at the door). All advance packages will go on sale in late September at www.holidayale.com.

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    While it’s difficult to picture Santa as a young man, he was once. He met the future Mrs. Claus one snowy night when she offered him a winter ale that she brewed herself. It was love at first sight – for both the Mrs. and her winter ales. With Santa’s growing fame, his favorite brews became named after his favorite day – Christmas. Santa now travels the world each year to spread the joy that began in a stable in Bethlehem two millennia ago.

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