Beerista: BYOB is the best option for most music festivals
It’s a pity micro-brewed beers aren’t as widely available as locally sourced food is at festivals
For all the wonderful local and artisan delicacies you might get to try as part of your summer festival experience, the accompanying drink will likely be the beer-world equivalent of a Big Mac. Photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto
It’s hard to a get a decent beer at a music festival these days. Though you can do almost everything else, from getting married or having your face painted in glitter to watching a live cookery demonstration by a Michelin star chef.
Yes, there are entire fields dedicated to good food at many of the big festivals but if you fancied a nice peppery Saison with your poké bowl, or a fruity IPA with your vegan nachos? Not a chance. For all the wonderful local and artisan delicacies you might get to try as part of your summer festival experience, the accompanying drink will likely be the beer-world equivalent of a Big Mac.
The absence of beer made by Irish microbreweries seems all the more strange given the widening scope of the larger music festivals, such as Electric Picnic or Body & Soul, which have evolved over the years to offer so much more than their headline acts and to cater for all tastes, interests, ages, food preferences, camping styles and more. So why not have a better selection of beer or at least a few more taps serving local beers?
Of course many festivals need the financial support that goes with big drinks sponsorship – it’s just a pity that it often means excluding the smaller operators at a time when the indigenous drinks industry is booming with a massive surge not just in beer but also in craft gins, whiskeys and more.
You can, however, bring your own beers to some of the festivals and cans are a light and compact option if you’re weekending it. Big Bunny IPA 6% is part of Kinnegar’s new range of 440ml cans and has a lovely fresh hoppy aroma, clean body and slightly creamy mouthfeel with lowish bitterness.
YellowBelly’s Kellerbier 4.3% is a light and refreshing German style lager and perfect for a little break while setting up your tent.