Brisbane's beer-drinking calendar just received a new entry, with The Great Australasian Beer SpecTAPular announcing its first-ever Brisbane festival. Better known as GABS, and considered by most as the best craft beer and cider festival in the Asia-Pacific region, the fest began in Melbourne eight years ago. It has now expanded to cover four cities and two countries to date — including Brissie when it joins the fold in 2019.
GABS Brisbane will hit the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on Saturday, April 27, with fest creators Steve Jeffares and Guy Greenstone (The Local Taphouse, Stomping Ground Brewing Co.) wrangling up the best breweries from the region. Previous events have offered up over 500 brews in total, including up to 170 festival beers and ciders, with 100 of these often wacky specialty brews — created just for the event and are generally the festival's main draw — set to come to Brisbane.
GABS' exclusive beers give attendees the rare chance to try brand-spanking new beers, while also meeting the brewers behind them. 2018's tipples included ingredients like Great Ocean Road snails, crickets and durian. There was also a laksa ale, a whisky sour beer and an umami beer with miso, soy and seaweed, in case you're wondering what might be in store.
Apart from beer, the fest's interstate legs have played host to everything from Holey Moley pop-up courses, gin and whiskey cocktail bars and an 18-metre-high beer Ferris wheel, as well as wandering performances and local food stalls. Just which activities will make the jump to Queensland has yet to be revealed.
The single day event is categorised in two sessions, with session one taking place in the afternoon and session two an evening affair. If you're a super keen craft drinker, you'll be able to purchase tickets to both sessions when they go on sale at a yet-to-be-advised date — we wish those ticket holders the best of luck.