Craft beer became “trendy” about ten years ago, but a decade later it’s safe to say it’s a trend that’s sticking around. From the city to the suburbs, it seems like a new brewery is popping up on every corner. With so many breweries and so little time, attending one–or maybe more–of the local craft beer fests is a great way to taste test many microbrews, from citrusy wheat beers to hoppy IPAs. We’ve rounded up the details of this year’s craft beer fests in Lake County, but be sure to pay attention to ticket sales — most sell out in advance of the event. These events are for adults ages 21 and older, so be sure to book a sitter in advance.
Craft Beer Festivals in Lake County
Festivals are in chronological order. Please click the link for full details and to purchase tickets. Little Lake County is not responsible for sold out events. Always have a designated driver, to make it easier we have a map with all the festivals at the end of the story so you can find train routes to ensure everyone’s safety while enjoying great beer.
Barks and Brews Dog-Friendly Beer Festival
Saturday, April 27
2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Broken Oar Marina, Bar & Grill
$30 in advance, $35 day of
Sample beers alongside your favorite four-legged friend at this dog-friendly, craft beer festival. Proceeds from this event benefit Save-a-Vet, an organization that aids military and law enforcement working animals as well as disabled, injured, and retired military and law enforcement veterans. Tickets to this fest include 20, 3-ounce tasting samples and a commemorative beer tasting mug.
A Celebration of Illinois Craft Beer
Saturday, April 27, 11:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Mickey Finn’s, Libertyville
$75 VIP, $50 general admission, limited tickets
This boutique event will feature more than ten local brewers with a meet and greet with many owners and brewers. Limited to first 200 people to sign up. VIP’s receive an 8 oz tasting glass, early entry (11:30 a.m.) plus a $20 Mickey Finn’s gift card (good for food, beer or swag). GA tickets receive the tasting glass, entry and a $10 Mickey Finn’s gift card.
Craft Beer Fest
Saturday, April 27
12:00 – 5:00 p.m.
Historic Long Grove
$40 in advance, $50 day of
Sample beer and wine from area breweries enjoy live music. Food will be available for purchase. Full-access tickets include a commemorative glass and unlimited 3-ounce samples during the event. Designated driver tickets include commemorative and unlimited refills of water.
Lake Zurich Craft Beer Festival
May 10 & 11
5:00 – 10:00 p.m.
$39 in advance $50 day of
NEW for 2019 there will be heated tents. Tasting passes include admission to the festival, live music, commemorative logo tasting glass and 3 oz samples from over 100+ craft beers as well as a Home Brew Cove. Local vendors will sell food. Designated driver tickets are $10.
Grayslake Craft Beer Festival
Saturday, June 1
1:00 – 5:00 p.m.
$35 regular, $65 VIP
The Grayslake Craft Beer Festival is a celebration of the art of brewing and a local fundraising event. There will be over 150 brews from more than 65 different breweries. Admission includes beer samples, live music, and a commemorative glass. All of the net proceeds of the Grayslake Craft Beer Festival will be used to fund college scholarships for deserving students. Please note that in previous years, this event has sold out and there were no tickets available the day of the event.
Mundelein Craft Beer Festival
Saturday June 8
1:00 – 5:00 p.m.
$45 in advance, $50 day of
This festival features world-class breweries from Illinois and the Midwest, including Mundelein’s own Tighthead Brewery. Tickets provide admission, 3-ounce samples of beer, and a souvenir cup. There will be live music and covered seating. Food will be available for purchase from local restaurants and food trucks. Last year all of the tickets sold out in advance, so it would be in your best interest to purchase ahead of time, as only a limited number of tickets are reserved for “day of” ticket sales.
Craft Beer & Wine Festival
Saturday, June 22
2:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Heritage Park Pavilion
$35 in advance $45 day of
Summer, sun, and suds are just a few of the pleasures you’ll enjoy at this annual event. Enjoy tastings of over 60 seasonal beers, wines, and ciders from regional and national breweries. a portion of the proceeds will benefit the PURSUIT adult day program, a collaborative program designed to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities 21 years and older by creating recreation and leisure opportunities, improving health and wellness, teaching life skills, self-advocacy and community integration. General admission includes a souvenir tasting glass $5 in food tickets, live entertainment, and unlimited sampling.
Barrington Brew Festival
Saturday, July 13
3:00 – 7:00 p.m.
$40 in advance
This event supports the Barrington Area Council on Aging and features more than 50 brewers and over 90 craft beers to sample. Admission includes a souvenir glass, t-shirt (limited availability) and 20 tickets for 3-ounce drink samples. VIP ticket perks include early entrance, a special seating area, appetizers, and a food vendor coupon. Additional sample tickets may be purchased for $0.50 each (cash only). Tickets to this event are limited and not yet on sale.
Border War Beer Fest
Saturday, August 3
3:00 – 6:30 p.m.
Harbor Park, Kenosha
$79 VIP, $45 General
This unique craft beer fest features Wisconsin and Illinois brewers in a friendly battle to see who takes home the “Willy”, a traveling trophy awarded to the state with the best brews as voted on by attendees at the fest. Food truck cuisine and homebrews round out the line-up, and fest-goers can cheer on their state! Designated drive tickers $15
Find a craft beer festival in Lake County
Did we miss your favorite craft beer festival? Tell us about it in the comments!
Find even more craft beer goodness at these McHenry County Craft Beer Festivals.