For beer lovers, this weekend will be Lager than Life and Fresh to Death


Victoria Beer Society is back with two events featuring a selection of craft beers

Photo provided of pint from Container Brewing.

This weekend the Victoria Beer Society is hosting two live events for the pint-mad public. Lager than Life  will be held October 8 from 5:30 to 8:30 pm, while the society’s fall hop festival Fresh to Death will be held October 9 from 2-5 pm. 

Both events will be held outdoors in the 600 block of David Street. Tickets for each event are $35 and will include four 4oz testers. Additional tasters can be purchased for $1.75. Food will also be available from Rock Bay Market’s Bird and Basket stalls and special guest Dumpling Drop.

Both festivals will feature about 20 different B.C. craft beers. 

While lagers have been historically maligned in favour of IPAs and other bolder beer styles, the society’s Beer Director Joe Wiebe says it’s time for them to come back into the light.

“Lagers we think [are] kind of seen as an underdog in the beer world,” Wiebe said in an interview with the Martlet. “So we thought that we would celebrate lagers and all their glory.”

At the Fresh to Death event, hops are the stars. 

Following the end-of-summer harvest, brewers get to work brewing seasonal beers with freshly picked hops. It is these beers that will be on display at the festival. Other seasonal beers as well as Oktoberfest style lagers will round out the festival’s lineup.

“Fresh to Death is an event that we’ve been doing now for several years,” said Wiebe. “When you use hops fresh from the harvest, and you use them immediately in the brewing process, they provide a really unique flavor profile that you don’t really get otherwise.”

For those that really want to get their hop on, the society is hosting a VIP event from 1-2 pm prior to Fresh to Death where special ticket holders will be guided through a tasting of four selected fresh hop beers by Rob Mangelsdorf, the former editor of Growler Magazine. Wiebe says a limited number of VIP tickets are still available.  

Wiebe is particularly excited to have some unique beers at the Lager than Life event, like Moon Under Water Brewpub’s HOJO Japanese Toasted Rice Lager.

“Clay Potter, the brewer there, is doing something really interesting using toasted rice and I’ll be interested in seeing what that turns out,” he said. “Because rice doesn’t usually provide a lot of flavor, but if he’s toasting it, then it might give us something interesting.”

Another interesting lager Wiebe mentioned is Twin City Brewing’s Dissimulator German Doppelbock, a heavy-bodied German lager bottled at 7.5 per cent alcohol by volume (ABV). 

At Fresh to Death, Wiebe says there are two breweries he’s never been to that are offering up selections. Bright Eye Brewing from Kamloops is bringing an IPA and a Pale Ale while Langley’s Locality Brewing and Brookside Brewing are bring an ISA, a lighter, hoppier version of an IPA. Locality Brewing actually grows their own barley and hops, Wiebe says, which makes the new farm-based brewery stand out in the craft beer scene.

Although both events are outdoors, attendees will still be required to show their vaccine passport alongside their valid government ID. Both events are only open to those ages 19 and above. 

Tickets for both events can be purchased on the Victoria Beer Society’s website.