Have you heard of the Yerevan Beer Festival? Festivals are always fun celebrations and especially when you’re in another country it also becomes a cultural experience. You get to experience the local traditions and somehow become a part of it. And, especially when it’s a food/drink festival, you even get to taste it for free which is your bonus! 😉 So, if you happen to be in Armenia during summer then be sure to attend the Yerevan Beer Festival because it’s a lot of fun.
The Yerevan Beer Festival is an annual celebration of Armenian beer culture that takes place in summertime in the capital city, on Zakyan street. It aims to acquaint people with the Armenian beer-making traditions and unite beer lovers with local producers. In addition to tasting the local beer, you can also participate in various competitions, games, events, listen to live music performances and a lot more.
So, let’s learn how we organize the beer festival in Yerevan and what you can expect. Also, it’s important to know why we celebrate it in Armenia and what’s the history behind the festival. Of course, again, I am here with recommendations of places you can go to have the best beer in Yerevan. But when you attend the festival, don’t forget to share your impressions and some photos with me on Instagram or Twitter with #ArmeniaTravelTips. I’ll be looking forward to them!
How do we celebrate the Yerevan Beer Festival?
During the beer festival, you will witness lots of beer from leading Armenian breweries. You will get to know the Armenian beer-making traditions and the peculiar taste of the different types of local beer. Some of the products presented during the Yerevan Beer Fest might also include the newest innovations and products on the market. And also, let’s not forget about the best local pubs and restaurants that will also take part in the festival. Besides the beer tasting, the event will be full of live music performances, dances, fun, games, different contests and surprises.
Well, the entrance to the area of the Yerevan Beer Festival is free of charge and you can freely roam around if you want. If you’re on a budget, soaking in the atmosphere and enjoying the music can also be a good idea. However, if you want to buy some beer, you cannot pay with cash or card, you’ll need to buy special coupons.
That’s basically the only way to pay for a glass of beer here. An average glass of beer at the Yerevan Beer Festival will cost you anywhere between 3 to 10 coupons. To give you a rough idea of the actual prices, last year you could buy 5 coupons for 1000 AMD (2 USD). However, it’s worth noting that you may expect slight price changes for this year, as the prices increased for everything in general.
Be aware that you probably won’t be able to try any beer with a single coupon. However, the number of coupons you’ll need for a glass of beer really depends on the quality of the beer you choose. The more craft ones obviously cost more than simpler brands. But, no need to worry, you can buy the coupons and enjoy extra beer anytime during the festival.
Also, know that there are packages available as well. The price of the package is 5000 AMD and that includes a beer glass, a handmade leather case and 10 coupons that you can use for beer tasting. Note that you can only buy the packages on the spot as no pre-sale is available. Yes, you technically pay more but you get the chance to take something with you as a memory from the festival.
Timing of the festival
The Yerevan Beer Festival takes place annually, in the summertime. Usually, it lasts about 5 hours and takes place on Zakyan street, one of the central streets of Yerevan. You can watch this video below to have a better idea of how the atmosphere at this beer fest feels.
Why do we even have a beer festival?
The main goal of organizing the Yerevan Beer Festival is to introduce people to the local breweries and also promote urban and recreational tourism. The rising popularity of such events brings a number of travelers to our country and that’s what Armenia aims for. Since August 2014, we started building a tradition of organizing this beer festival in Yerevan and now each summer we welcome everyone to take part in such a fun fest. Everyone seems to really enjoy it and the feedback is quite generous both from the locals and foreigners.
Today, Armenia has lots of breweries, microbreweries, and brewpubs in the country and the number is growing. The variety of Armenian beer is expanding with time and that creates a desire to have a festival dedicated to beer. Tourists and Armenians get the chance to experience the improvements in the industry with new types of beer, and fresh flavors, every year. We also have the Yerevan Wine Days festival dedicated to wine if you want to check it out.
You may be surprised but one of the first mentions of Armenian beer dates back to the fifth century B.C. which suggests Armenians have a pretty long history of beer production, as reported by imyerevan. I’m not entirely sure it’s a trustworthy piece of information. We Armenians, are known for our (sometimes silly and exaggerated) pride of having an ancient history and supposedly pioneering a bunch of stuff. But I’d like to believe it’s true. 🙂
So, all in all, organizing a beer fest in Yerevan was a sort of natural idea. The hopes were that it would spark up interest in the local beer, which it did. Also, having an event that brings like-minded beer lovers together is a great thing! And, obviously, we were inspired by the idea of Oktoberfest, let’s be honest. It’s just that our Beer Fest comes with Armenian BBQ and loads of delicious food that’s not in the form of a sausage. 🙂 By the way, if you are a BBQ lover, then check out my review of Bar B.Q. Yerevan, it’s a very popular and loved fast food restaurant these days.
Best places to get a beer
There are plenty of brewpubs that just started popping up recently. Some of them will also surely participate in the upcoming beer festival in the summertime. However, you don’t have to wait for the festival to have good quality beer right? 😉 Here are my favorite places to hang out and enjoy a beer;
- Dargett Brewpub – the most popular microbrewery in Yerevan
- dors craft beer & kitchen – a must-visit place for beer lovers
- Beer Academy – a renowned pub with tasty beer and a nice terrace
- 379 torch and brew – a perfect place for beer, crayfish and seafood lovers
- Kilikia BeerHouse – a place offering a selection of craft beer
- Paulaner Beerhouse – the finest Munich art of brewing
- Labeerint – wide range of craft beer right from beer taps
- Vienna Ribs – serving some of the city’s best beer
- Gastropolis – a food hall serving delicious craft beer
Final thoughts on the Yerevan Beer Festival
I hope when you visit Armenia you will manage to check out the Yerevan Beer Fest. I am sure you will enjoy it and will come back, eventually. Also, if you like having fun at festivals I would recommend you to not miss the color festival and water festival as you’ll absolutely love them! 😉
Featured image credits: Pavel Danilyuk on Pexels