The week of Great American Beer Festival is simply heaven for craft beer drinkers in Denver. From tap takeovers, to special releases, to ancillary parties and celebrations, Denver becomes abuzz with beer-centric activity. One such event, returning to Denver for its fifth straight year, is the What the Funk!? Invitational, a barrel-aged beer festival and competition. The festival is slated for Tuesday, October 4th at 6PM at the EXDO Event Center.
The festival is sponsored by Denver’s Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, and Shelton Brothers, a beer importer out of Massachusetts. As the name would imply, What the Funk!? celebrates all things barrel aged – from sour, to funky, to wild, to boozy. According to a press release about the event, the What the Funk!? Invitational “provides a curated interactive setting where beer enthusiasts can mingle, meeting the brewers and other alchemists who create sought after barrel-aged liquids.”
The 2016 event marks the fifth installment of the What the Funk!? Invitational’s run. Over 50 breweries and cideries are scheduled to attend from all parts of the globe (you can see the entire list of attending breweries and cidieries here). This year, the event is moving back to the EXDO Event Center, after being at the Highlands Masonic Event Center in 2015. However, crowding, a confusing layout, and long lines left many festival-goers with a sour taste in their mouth after last year’s festival.
“We learned a lot from last year’s festival,” said Crooked Stave Owner/Brewmaster Chad Yakobson. “It is always our mission to put on the best barrel-aged festival we possibly can by bringing in exciting brewers from around the world that would not be here in Denver if it were not for this festival. That did not translate in 2015 as it did in year’s past, as we would have hoped. All we can do is hang in there and strive to make this year the best of any of the years for every festival goer.”
This year’s event will only have 800 tickets – down from 1000 last year. Tickets are $100 each, and go on sale Wednesday, August 24 at 10AM MST. A portion of the ticket sales will benefit Water for People, an international nonprofit organization providing fresh water to 4 million people. You can buy your tickets for WTF!? here.