It's time once again for an eclectic sampling of flavorful brews to take the spotlight in the Region.
Craft beer and specialty ale fans will get the opportunity to taste a variety of products during the 4th annual Blue Chip Brewfest April 12 at Blue Chip Casino, Hotel and Spa in Michigan City.
"It's grown every year and every year we get new breweries in," said Jack Elia, director of operations-hospitality at Blue Chip Casino. "The craft beer industry is still growing by leaps and bounds."
During a recent preview of the fest at Blue Chip's William B's Steakhouse, Elia said guests will have a chance to pick from more than 200 brews to taste from more than 50 breweries.
Elia said in addition to the fest being held in the Stardust Event Center at the casino, there will also be a special tent to house assorted breweries.
At Blue Chip Brewfest, attendees can have an overall social experience while enjoying a variety of brews in a one-stop shopping trip. The diverse landscape of microbrews will be emphasized as local and national breweries will participate in the event.
Among local breweries scheduled to be featured this year are 18th Street Brewery in Gary; Three Floyds Brewing Co. of Munster; Back Road Brewery in LaPorte; Bulldog Brewery in Whiting; Burn 'Em Brewing from Michigan City; Crown Brewing of Crown Point; Figure Eight Brewing of Valparaiso; Hunter's Brewing of Chesterton; Shoreline Brewery of Michigan City and Twisted K-8 Brewing of LaPorte.
Other breweries scheduled to appear include Tenth and Blake Beer Company in Milwaukee; Bell's Brewery of Kalamazoo, Mich.; Boston Beer of Boston, Mass. Dark Horse Brewing Company of South Bend; Evil Czech Brewery of Culver, Ind.; Goose Island Brewery of Chicago; Lagunitas Brewing Company of Chicago and Virtue Cider of Chicago.
In addition to the brew sampling, there'll be a book signing and luncheon with Fred Bueltmann of New Holland Brewing as well as a VIP tasting. The luncheon with Bueltmann is part of a special Brewmaster package which guests may purchase. Special food and beer pairings will also be available.
VIP ticket holders will also receive early admission and can attend an another tasting from 1 to 3 p.m. Other assorted gifts or items come with various packages.
"I look at this as an educational type of thing," said Elia, who added attendees will taste a variety of flavors and types of brews while wandering the fest. Brew masters and representatives from the different breweries will also be on hand to talk with guests.
"The flavor profiles of what some of these brewers are doing is amazing," said Elia.
Elia said feedback from previous Brewfests has been positive with guests looking forward to the next year's event.
Among food available for purchase at the fest are hot dogs, brats and pretzels. All of Blue Chip's restaurants will also be open for diners to enjoy.
A silent auction will also be held. Proceeds will again benefit the United Way of LaPorte County.