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Calgary’s YYCBeerWeek Returns

Here are 3 Seriously Legendary Events You ABSOLUTELY Can’t Miss.

Calgary’s largest city-wide beer festival, YYCBeerWeek, returns for year two, this June 4-10, and it’s already taking the city by storm.

If you haven’t heard of it, you soon will. YYCBeerWeek started modestly in 2017 as a week-long craft beer festival which brings together Calgary brewers, chefs, charities and everyday citizens.

Taking place during the first week of June, this years YYCBeerWeek is more than double the size and loaded with delicious events you won’t want to miss!

But first, what is YYCBeerWeek?

The format is threefold…

  1. Calgary breweries host a special beer tasting event or offer a promotion in their taproom throughout the week, donating $1 from each sale to a local charity.
  2. Calgary restaurants create an exclusive beer-inspired dish made with local craft beer or paired with a local craft beer. $1 from each meal combo is donated to a local charity.
  3. Local Calgary retailers offer a special promotion on one or more local craft beers throughout the week, with $1 from each sale donated to a local charity.

The entire week centers not only around delicious food and craft beer- it’s also a massive, city-wide initiative to support the local community and give back to those in need.

This year’s festivities will feature 34 craft breweries, more than 40 restaurants, and 30+ retail locations.

Alright, now you know the basics; here’s what you need to know to maximize your YYCBeerWeek !

#1. YYCBeerWeek Launch Party taking place @ Trolley 5 Restaurant & Brewery

The festivities kick-off Monday, June 4th at Trolley 5 on 17th Ave. But this isn’t your typical launch party, it’s going to be a historic event.

On June 4th, more than twenty of Calgary’s best local craft brewers are coming together to release the first ever Official YYCBeerWeek Collaboration Beer.

 Why is this beer so special?

Because it’s the largest collaboration beer in Calgary’s history!

We all know the craft beer scene has exploded in Alberta over the past five years, and just last year we saw huge strides for the industry as local brewers were allowed (for the first time ever) to serve their beer at the Calgary Stampede. This year’s collaboration beer will bring together more industry members than ever before, serving up a light and refreshing ISA (India Session Ale).

What is an ISA you ask?

It’s like an IPA (India Pale Ale) but packs less of a punch in terms of alcohol percentage – typically 4.5%, whereas IPA’s get as high as 8%. ISA’s are also not as full-bodied as IPA’s, making it the perfect, refreshing beer for a warm summer’s evening.

This particular ISA is being made with malt from Red Shed Malting, a local farm only 30 minutes up the road from Calgary. Red Shed owners Matt and Joe Hamill are 4th generation farmers whose family has been growing some of the worlds best barley since 1929!

If you’re interested in attending the Monday Launch Party and getting a taste of this historic brew, tickets are only $15 in support of KidSport Calgary and include a taste of the collaboration beer plus an additional pint of any Trolley 5 core beer on tap. To reserve your tickets visit


#2. YYCBeerWeek Summer Adult’s Night @ the Calgary Zoo

 If you like beer, food, penguins and…Pandas! You’re in luck! This year YYCBeerWeek has partnered with the Calgary Zoo to bring us the first Adult’s Night of the Summer.

Featuring more than 18 local craft breweries serving up tasty samples, you’ll also get to try local delicacies from a dozen different local food vendors, including Spolumbo’s and the Calgary Zoo’s very own chefs.

If you’re in the mood for music, the event will feature four live blues acts located across the grounds as you stamp your passport at beer and food stations. Passport holders can enter to win a prize package from the Zoo by voting for their favorite beers and submitting their passport at the end of the evening.

Adult’s Night is happening Thursday, June 7th from 6 PM until 9 PM, but arrive early at 4:30 PM and show your ticket for early access to visit Calgary newest visitors – four giant pandas!

Tickets are $47 in support of the Calgary Zoo’s Whooping Crane conservation effort and go on sale May 10th. To learn more visit


#3. YYCBeerWeek Cask Battle & Gold Cask Award @ CRAFT Beer Market 10th Ave.

If you missed it, last year’s cask battle went on record as one of the best cask battles in Calgary’s history. This year it’s more than double the size and will no-doubt be twice the party!!

Not sure what a cask is?

Somewhat smaller than a standard keg (only 40 liters), a cask barrel is a one-off exclusive beer and is about as natural (and fresh) as you can get. Unpasteurized, unfiltered and naturally carbonated, this delicious brew is served straight from the cask.

Essentially, local brewers take one of their existing beers currently in production and add special, one-off flavors, including everything from fruit to spices. They then seal the cask and let the flavors infuse for several days.

 Here’s where things get interesting…

No one, not even the brewer, knows exactly how it will taste before the cask is “tapped”. Depending on storage temperature and duration, the cask can have a vastly different taste and flavor profile. This is what makes cask battles so exciting – it’s a truly blind taste test.

BEST of all, the YYCBeerWeek Cask Battle features live, real-time voting displayed on TV screens around the bar! As you sample each cask, vote for your favourite on you’re smart phone and watch the battle heat up as breweries go head-to-head for cask supremacy.

The winner takes home the Gold Cask Award to be displayed in their taproom until the following year. Regarded as the Stanley Cup of the local craft brewing industry, this year we’ll see Wild Rose Brewery defend their title against more than fifteen local breweries. This is one event you won’t want to miss!


Best of all, entry for this event is FREE! Visit to learn more.


David Wald
David Wald
Founder, stmpdr, works at Social Sesame, and remembers being dragged out of bed at 6am to get a free breakfast on Kids Day. Finally ownes a pair of Cowboy boots.