This week the beer world is abuzz with two “CBC”s: the Brewers
Association’s annual CBC or craft brewers’ conference, on now in Phillie, and another “CBC” next weekend, better known as the vaunted Copenhagen Beer Celebration, which kicks off in Denmark (May 13-14) with a citywide swath of events like cheffed-out beer dinners to heavy metal shows and beer-soaked fun runs.
Some of the most sought after U.S. breweries will be in attendance, including Three Floyds, Hill Farmstead, Stone, Boneyard, and Funky Buddha. It’s become a bucket list for die-hard beer fans, but let’s face it: it’s no easy side trip. So when Mikkel Borg Bjergsø (the creator of the festival, and proprietor of Mikkeller beer, founded in 2006) announced he was bringing the CBC to Boston this September, beer fanatics high-fived across the land.
To make it all happen, Mikkel teamed up with Crash Line Productions, the team behind the annual Boston Calling music fest. So not only will the fest bring Mikkel’s tradition of epic global beer lists, it will also feature musical guests from Yo La Tengo to Lucero, The Barr Brothers, Mariachi El Bronx, and others. As for the brews, alongside Mikkeller and other European standouts like To Øl (also of Copenhagen) and Loverbeer (Marentino, Italy), American brewers to be featured include pathbreakers from Allagash (Portland, Maine) and Arizona Wilderness (Gilbert, Arizona) to Tired Hands (Ardmore, Pennsylvania), Trillium (Boston, Massachusetts) and Wicked Weed (Asheville, North Carolina). Tickets are on sale now. Read on to hear what Mikkel had to say about what is sure to become one of Craft Beer Nation’s hottest draws.
Weekly Pint: You probably could have picked among many large cities for an American version of the CBC. Why Boston?
Bjergsø: We have the 5th year anniversary for Copenhagen Beer Celebration in Copenhagen next week. We wanted to move the great festival to other parts of the world, with the U.S. being obvious. A great opportunity led it to Boston. We like the East Coast and Boston, so it made sense. We would love to do one on the West Coast in a few years as well.
Excellent. So how did the list of participants come together?
Like in Copenhagen, we invite brewers that are friends and that we respect. There are so many great brewers, so it's hard to decide who to invite. If possible we would love to invite a lot more, but we have to limit ourselves.
How does this compare to what’s going on in the Copenhagen scene?
CBC Boston will be similar, but have many differences from the Copenhagen one. We have equally great brewers and beers, but we will also focus on the music part in Boston which is new to us. The craft beer and festival scene in the states is huge, so we really need to do something special to stand out. I think a mix of brewers, beers, food and music will do that.
Any insider tips, surprises, or other tidbits of info we can highlight?
We try not to keep too many things secret, as we love to share all our ideas. But things will come that we did not expect, and we will present beers that will make every beer geek drool.
Tickets are on sale now at www.copenhagenbeerfest.com (from $40 per day; 21-and-over). For updates, follow Copenhagen Beer Celebration on social media via Instagram: @COPENHAGENBEERCELEBRATION; Twitter: @COPENHAGENBEER; and Facebook: Copenhagen Beer Celebration.