The First Ever Cellared Beer Festival Brings European-Inspired Beers to Chicago

If you want to start the beer drinking season in style, the first European-style outdoor tasting festival is the best reason to head to the Northman Beer & Cider Garden this month. You will have a choice between over 40 cellared beers!

New and old place to eat and drink this summer

There are many indoor options in Chicago for any type of food and drink enthusiasts. 

For a city with around 100 neighborhoods, Chicago has a variety of restaurants to match every taste, occasion, and budget. According to the state website, there are currently over 7,300 restaurants in the Windy City – not counting non-traditional eateries like food stands, trucks, and take-away spots that make the Chicago food scene so colorful and celebrated.

A few new arrivals are tempting people this summer. 

The Malibu Barbie Cafe will be the new kid on the block in the Windy City, bringing California beachside vibes to Chicago. So, for Barbie fanatics in the city or visiting, the party will start June 7th. The Malibu Barbie Cafe will run through September 15.

If coffee is not your fancy, and you would rather enjoy a sip of high tea, the best hotels and restaurants in Chicago go above and beyond to perk up the experience. To enjoy the classic afternoon tea ritual, you won’t go wrong with the Windy City’s downtown hotels and quaint tearooms, where you can savor a delicious brew with equally scrumptious canapés, colorful pastries, and bite-sized sandwiches. For those in the mood for a contemporary twist, the likes of Kostali and Bar Pendry have reinvented the tea-time tradition. Some of these innovative tea houses are treating patrons looking for something potent to tea-infused cocktails with a punch.

Some establishments not only offer tea and coffee, but also books and a theater experience. The Understudy, a dual bookstore and cafe, serves Metric coffee drinks and tea drinks from Lakeview’s The Coffee and Tea Exchange, while you can sample baked goods from Edgewater’s pHlour and Andersonville’s Defloured, which specializes in gluten-free pastries. The Understudy bookstore, which also looks like an old style library, sells theater-themed books. That includes a fiction section with works by playwrights, titles that have been adapted for the stage and stories about the theater. 

Hopes are high for this first-time beer and joy infused event

But for those who prefer to spend their free time outside, there are options. After two successful previous years, the award-winning ‘Sundays on State’ event series will return for only two days this summer to bring more people (and their money) to the Loop. And considering the previous editions were meant to revive the neighborhood businesses after the pandemic, the success ensured the event came back.

The hopes are the same for this first-time beer festival. Taking place on Saturday, May 20th, the Northman Cellared Beer Festival is debuting at the end of May and will offer everything beer drinking paying customers love: a series of drink tastings, live music, buffet options, and more on the sun-kissed Riverwalk.

The outdoor event is perfect for craft beer enthusiasts, with two sessions available to attend from 12-3 p.m. or 5-8 p.m. At first, the event was scheduled to take place last month, but the bad weather pushed it to this May, when temperatures are expected to be more inducing to beer drinking. 

Now, there’s still a chance to participate in the lovely Riverwalk located festival as it makes its annual debut at the end of this month, bringing live music, bites, raffle tickets, and plenty of top-tier cider and beer tastings to try out! Everybody knows Chicagoans love their fancy beer and this might be the time for you to find your new favorite drink!

Get a ticket to the event and you might win a raffle prize. 

  • There are two sessions available for tastings from 12 to 3 pm and 5 to 8 pm
  • The festival is located under the heated pergola on the Riverwalk
  • Tickets are $70 for the 12-3 p.m. tasting or the 5- 8 p.m. tasting and enjoy!

Where to go: 233 East Riverwalk, Chicago, IL 60601

Chicago has an impressive and evolving beer scene

The Chicago beer scene has experienced explosive growth in the last two decades, the rising popularity of craft beer being one of the reasons. Chicago’s brewing community has it all, from the biggest names in the country to tiny experimental upstarts.

The beer culture in Chicago is well-established and ever-evolving. That doesn’t surprise beer aficionados much given that the Windy City plays host to 4 of the fifty fastest-growing breweries in America today. After all, Chicago accounts for ten percent of the annual growth in craft breweries.

Even more, according to the Brewers Association’s figures, Chicago has the largest concentration of top-performing craft breweries in the nation. This fact doesn’t come as a big surprise, considering that Chicago is America’s #1 when it comes to the number of breweries.

Whether you want to explore the downtown beer scene or venture out to the suburbs, you’re sure to find an exciting range of Chicago breweries. With more than 200 breweries in The Windy City and its diverse neighborhoods, we hand-picked the best Chicago breweries to visit.

Cool Things Chicago