I’m not sure what it says about Chicago that we have both a Motor Row and a Malt Row but perhaps it’s a good thing they’re on opposite sides of the city. While the South Loop’s Motor Row isn’t producing and selling automobiles like it was a century ago, Malt Row in Ravenswood has been foaming over the lip with new breweries opening up constantly.
It’s no secret Chicagoans like to drink and we like to drink outdoors. We’re pretty damned good at it with seemingly a new festival every week. What sets Ravenswood On Tap apart is the hyper local focus on the neighborhood breweries and those that have helped the neighborhood grow into the destination it has become.
Last year’s event was plagued with overwhelming interest and perfect weather. This year promises a larger space and has expanded to two days, and given the interest in the event last year, I’m guessing all the breweries involved will be more than prepared with having enough stock this year. Half Acre has undoubtedly led the charge in this area, but the fest offers the opportunity to try out smaller and less distributed breweries such as Spiteful, Dovetail, and Begyle, not to mention Koval Distillery, just in case you need something a little stronger. And of course, to soak up all those suds in your stomach will be Cevapcici, Luella’s Southern Kitchen, Yum Dum, and more.
OK, beer and food aren’t enough to entice you? Would live music all day help? Check out an eclectic mix of folk, rock, blues and more with the likes of Natalie Grace Alford, Bill MacKay, Dan Rico, and Mike Maimone. All it takes to access this is a $5 donation and an appetite for ales, lagers, and whatever else these ten breweries want to throw your way. Make sure to bring cash as each beer can be redeemed with a ticket for $6 (and don’t forget to tip!).
Ravenswood On Tap happens next weekend Saturday June 24th (1 PM – 9 PM) and Sunday June 25th (1 PM – 6 PM) at the intersection of Ravenswood and Berteau. For more information and full beer and music lineup, visit their website.