Toronto's Festival of Beer

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Toronto Festival of Beer
Genre Food, Attractions and entertainment
Dates Late July
Location(s) Exhibition Place in Toronto, Ontario
Years active 20
Attendance 30,000

The Toronto Festival of Beer (TFOB), also known as Beerfest, is an annual event that takes place at Exhibition Place in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The festival celebrates Canada’s rich brewing history by featuring more than 120 brands around the world and many Ontario craft brewers. The event has become Canada’s largest beer festival with 30,000 people attending every year. Established in 1994, the Toronto Festival of Beer has been sampling beer for those ages 19+ for 17 years.


Greg Cosway is the president and owner of the festival. His love for beer started at his time in Carleton University where he started “The Gourmet Beer Club of Canada” with Scott Rondeau which was the first of its kind in Canada.[1] Starting the gourmet beer club lead to the idea and start of the Toronto Festival of Beer with Scott Rondeau. This year will mark the 17th year the festival has been in operation which is now run by Beerlicious Inc., a company owned by Eventric Partnership Inc. The festival has also grown to become a key promoter of the beer and barbecue lifestyle.[1]

The festival used to be held at Fort York in Toronto, but in 2009 due to its growing popularity and expansion, the festival moved to Bandshell Park in Toronto’s Exhibition Place. It has grown from just a small beer festival to now including a variety of well known musical acts, brand experience areas and also gourmet barbecue demonstrations. Small Ontario craft breweries are now finding it hard to compete for space at the festival while competing with some of the biggest breweries in the world.[2] Last year Budweiser brought massive trailers and sprayed its logo across the main music stage and Sleeman’s brand experience booth had a beach volleyball court.

In 2011, the Toronto Festival of Beer also launched the Queer Beer Festival, a separate one-day event marketed toward Toronto's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.[3]

Beer sampling[edit]

During the event, 60 different exhibits will be showcasing over 120 different types of beer. Many are old types of beer but there are new additions of beer every year such as beer smoothies and millennium buzz beer.[4]

Sample List of Beers
  • Molson Canadian
  • Budweiser
  • Bud Lite
  • Bud Lite Lime
  • Harp Lager
  • Smithwicks Ale
  • F&M Brewery
  • Wellington Brewery
  • Railway City Brewing Company
  • Miller Chill
  • Molson M
  • Shock Top
  • Alexander Keith's
  • Newcastle Brown Ale
  • McClelland Imports
  • Great Lakes Brewery
  • Black Oak Brewery
  • Amsterdam Brewery
  • Ozawa Canada
  • Big Rock Brewery
  • 3 Brewers
  • United Distributors
  • Tsing Tao
  • Nickel Brook
  • Old Credit Brewery
  • Lake of Bays Brewing Company
  • Beau's All Natural Brewing Company

Additional services[edit]

The Toronto Festival of Beer also offers food and refreshment services to paying patrons. These services vary from drinks, to classic BBQ, and even exotic food.

The services offered by the Toronto Festival of Beer include:

  • South St. Burger Co.
  • Pizza Pizza
  • Caplansky's
  • The Dawgfather
  • Tiny Tom's Donuts
  • Ontario Corn Roasters
  • Grandpa Ken's Back Bacon
  • Heavenly Dreams Ice Cream
  • The Real Jerk
  • La Poutine Machine
  • The Friendly Greek
  • Edo Sushi
  • Oyster Boy
  • Shanghai Cowgirl
  • Mac n' Cheese booth

The Toronto Festival of Beer also hosts entertainment groups as well as radio stations such as 99.9 Virgin Radio and various other music bands and groups.

Environmental awareness[edit]

The Toronto Festival of Beer has always had a large gathering of people at their events, however they also want to become part of an act to help the environment. The Toronto Festival of Beer acknowledges the impact that a large event like the festival would have on the environment. The Toronto Festival of Beer has newly introduced reusable plastic sampling tokens, and recyclable paper cups. With this change to the Toronto Festival of Beer's layout there has been a great reduction in the number of disposable tokens and disposable paper cups. The management team of the Toronto Festival of Beer has also put a beer bottle drive into effect which will allow for more beer bottles to be recycled rather than thrown away. These actions that Greg Cosway and the Toronto Festival of Beer are doing will cut back dramatically the environmental impact and cut clean-up expenses.


There are many activities planned for the Toronto's Festival of Beer. Audiences will be entertained through the various musical talents that will be performing live on the Planter's main stage. There is a grilling tent hosted by professional chefs for those who are interested in gaining grilling tips.

The Libation Nation hosts events that happen in the festival every year. This year the Girl's Guided Beer Tour event will lead women throughout the festival educating them on the history of beer and women in the industry.[5]


  1. ^ a b Beef and brews prove a lucrative mix. Toronto Star, June 23, 2011.
  2. ^ "Small brewers a bit swamped". Toronto Star, August 13, 2008.
  3. ^ "Queer Beer Festival hits Toronto in August". fab, May 9, 2011.
  4. ^ "For the love of Toronto’s Festival of Beer"., August 8, 2010.
  5. ^ "Satellite Events | Festival of Beers". Retrieved 2013-12-02. 

External links[edit]