Beer blogger gives tips to avoid tipsiness at Top of the Hops
The sixth annual Top of the Hops Beer Fest promises to be a good time when it comes to the Coast Convention Center in Biloxi at 5 p.m. Saturday.
There's much to do and see, but the siren call for beer lovers is the chance to sample some of the more than 150 world-class beers.
Alex Colee, project manager for Top of the Hops' five annual beer festivals, sees what is trending.
In an email interview earlier this week with the Sun Herald, she said interest in India pale ales has spiked in the past two years, as has that of hard root beers after the recent success of Not Your Father's Root Beer.
Colee said both will be well represented Saturday. A few IPAs of note: Southern Tier, Green Flash West Coast, Crooked Letter Gipsy, New Belgium Citradelic Tangerine and Lucky Town Hop Fiasco. Root beer fans may sample Coney Island and Wild Ginger products.
As Colee travels, she said, she finds it interesting to see how the variety of beers increase each year at different locales. For instance, this year the Biloxi fest will welcome Yuengling, Slowboat Brewing Co. of Laurel and Fairhope Brewing Co. of Fairhope, Ala.
"I think one of our favorite things about producing craft beer festivals is that the industry is so quickly evolving," Colee said, "and every year we return to a city there are not only more breweries being introduced into that city, but there are also more local craft breweries popping up."
The fest will feature music by the Patrick Mooney Band as well as a karaoke stage, a cornhole tournament, a mixology garden, educational sessions and the popular silent disco, in which participants dance to music only they can hear.
A food-truck roundup will offer eating options. Participants are welcome to bring pretzel necklaces.
Beer pouring ends about 8:45.
General admission tickets are $40 in advance and $45 at the door, if still available.
Admission includes unlimited sampling, a souvenir 2-ounce mug and access to entertainment.
Advance VIP tickets are $75 and include exclusive food provided by the Blow Fly Inn and entry beginning at 4 p.m.
Designated-driver tickets are $15 advance ($25 for VIP) and do not include beer samples.
For advance tickets, visit ticketmaster .com or call 1-800-745-3000.
The festival is for ages 21 and older only.