Oakover Grounds in the Swan Valley played host this weekend to the Beer And Beef Festival, which was held over Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 September from 12pm to 9pm. The event saw 20 breweries from across Western Australia, Australia and even some international ones, set up shop at Oakover Winery.
We visited on the Sunday (big shout out to Tania from Baby Mammoth who offered us tickets to the event!) which seemed to be the busier day after speaking to some of the vendors. We started out with some beer tastings and checked out the food vendors on our way round, as everything was quite spaced out, which was great as nothing got too congested.
Beer tastings were well organised, as each brewery tent was split into a tasting side and purchasing side. Tastings were poured into measures and then into your tasting glass and you moved along, which meant even when there was a queue to taste, it never took more than a minute to reach the front.
Each brewery had 3 – 5 different beers available to taste, and these changed hourly. As it took around an hour to wander around the whole venue, by the time you got back to where you started the beers had all changed so it was like you were starting again!
Some of the beers we really enjoyed were the Steam Ale from Eagle Bay Brewing in Dunsborough and The Freo Dr and the Grasscutter from Mash Brewing in the Swan Valley. The Grasscutter was really unique as they add oak chips to the barrels for the last two days of brewing which gives it a unique oaky flavour.
There were also a few cider brewers on site and we discovered Spider Cider from The Cidery in Bridgetown, WA. It had a dry yet sweet flavour to it, so it was almost like drinking a Savanna!
When it came to the food there was a decent selection and plenty to choose from – including the popular South African influenced Baby Mammoth. We had dinner there after Boktown Perth 2015 and I thought the place was sensational so I was really excited to see them there. They had some fantastic dishes on offer including their very own boerie burger, Zulu corn and popular bunny chow.
Ryan, the executive chef, made us try his ‘Suicide Sauce’ and boy does that name fit the flavour! My mouth was tingling for about 20 minutes afterwards but the flavour was amazing. The boerie burger was great and I almost think that this should be an actual thing!
There were a few different stages set up around the grounds with different artists performing who were all great. There was also an ice cream stand and a fresh juice stand too so if you were all beered out these were lovely. Chloe and Kelly from My Kitchen Rules had their own food tent as well although $5 for a cupcake was a bit pricy!
Some details about the day:
Tickets were $25 which unfortunately only allowed you the privilege of entering the site. If you wanted to do any tastings, which of course you would at a beer festival, you had to shell out another $10 for a tasting glass and lanyard. Plus parking was $2 per car (not a gold coin donation as stated on the website). They also had some masterclasses you could attend but again these were an additional cost at $30 per person per class! Overall as a couple, you would have forked out $72 for the day before any food or drink purchases, which is pretty hefty in my mind (compared to something like UnWined which was $22 each, free parking, free masterclasses, cooking demos and a tasting glass for your tastings from over 80 wineries included in entry).
The event was really well run and hats off to the organisational team. When we left around mid afternoon there was someone being carted off kicking and screaming into a cop car – there always has to be one doesn’t there!
Overall it was a fantastic day, albeit not a particularly cheap day out. Did you go to the Beer And Beef Festival at Oakover Grounds this weekend? What did you think?