Salute! Beer and Food Pairing Festival

Where are you going to be Father’s Day weekend this year?  No plans?  Then plan on attending Salute! Salute! is a one of a kind, two day beer and food pairing festival taking place in Ojai. One of the reasons this event is so unique is that instead of bringing all the beers you can easily find in your local supermarket, many of the breweries will be spotlighting their hard to find specialty and limited release beers. Also, many of the beers will be poured by the brew masters so this is a great opportunity for you meet brewers from all over the region.   What I find so unique about this event is its focus on beer education.  The event is planned as much as an educational event as a party with plenty of opportunities for you to talk to brewery staff and food vendors about flavor profiles and food pairing options. Salute! will feature over 40 craft beer and food vendors as well as local musical talent all day long.

If you attended the festival last year you will find the event will look a little different this year.  For starters, the festival will take place in Ojai at the Ojai Beverage Company.  The move may seem counterintuitive to you (it did to me at first); however, the coordinators and co-founders (Christine and Joby) have some pretty good reasons for moving it from the beach to Ojai.   The best reason, in my opinion, for moving Salute! to Ojai means the event will be more intimate.  In fact, attendance this year is expected to be about half of that from last year which is good news for anyone who does attend. This means shorter lines and more opportunities to taste limited release beers and specialty food items from all the vendors. One thing will remain the same, though, attendees must be at least 21 years old and NO children will be allowed into the event.

Christine Hansen

Click card to visit Thirty-three Productions

New to Salute! this year will be a VIP Connoisseur’s Dinner that will be hosted at OBC Friday, June 17th from 6:30 to 10:00PM.  Dr. Bill Sysak from Stone World Gardens and Bistro will be hosting the VIP event.  This educational beer and food pairing dinner will highlight some rare beers (he won’t tell us what he is bringing) that will be paired with courses prepared by invited chefs. The event will kick off with a social hour (included in the ticket price) where attendees of the VIP session can enjoy  a pre-tasting of festival beers.  Dr. Bill Sysak will be around before and after the dinner for meet and greets. The VIP ticket also includes one general admission ticket to the festival on Saturday.  As if that wasn’t enough, VIP ticket holders will also be granted an hour early entrance into the festival on Saturday. There are limited VIP tickets for this event and it is sure to sell out so be sure to book your tickets to this event soon.

Joby Yobe

Click card to visit OBC

For those of you who don’t live in Ojai and still want to have a good time and not worry about travel plans there are a few options for you.  You can visit the website to see a list of partner Ojai hotels with deals for festival attendees or you can take advantage of the event’s shuttle service.  Abtey’s Limousine Service will be providing transportation from two Ventura locations and one location in Oak View. Two of the locations aren’t set in stone yet but there will be shuttle service from the Ventura Amtrak station.

For up to the minute information on Salute! be sure to visit their Facebook page.

Next week I will be hosting a discussion on how to make the most out of your beer festival. This will be an open discussion with very little input from me as I will be looking to you to post your beer festival “survival” tips.

  1. I wish I could attend!

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