By Megan Brown
Barrel & Flow Fest, one of the best beer festivals in the country as voted by USA Today readers, isn’t just about beer. Its larger mission is to foster an inclusive and welcoming atmosphere to empower the entire Black community.
This year’s festival, which kicks off Tuesday, Aug. 8, will showcase Black art, food, music — and, of course, beer — through a weeklong spectacular that culminates with the showcase festival on Saturday, Aug. 13 in its new home at The Stacks at 3 Crossings in the Strip District.
Barrel & Flow will feature more than 30 Black-owned breweries (sharing 55 one-of-a-kind collaboration brews made exclusively for the festival), 150 food, art and craft vendors, seven bands, five DJs, and two live stages curated by Pittsburgh’s Boom Concepts.
Breweries from all across the country will be there, but you’ll also see some familiar local faces, too.
Here’s the full list of brewers.
A few local breweries have teamed up with Black artists in the Pittsburgh area. You will find a collaboration between Brew Gentleman and artist C.B. Perry, and you can try the old-fashioned, cocktail-inspired ale with rye collaboration from Trace Brewing and artist HUNY.
This year. Barrel & Flow teamed up with a new sponsor, Crackem, a free app that allows users to earn rewards for visiting participating breweries.
Barrel & Flow Fest started in 2018 as Fresh Fest, the nation’s first festival for Black-owned craft breweries. The festival rebranded to Barrel & Flow last year.
Barrel & Flow Fest Full Schedule
Tuesday, Aug. 9, 5-8 p.m. – Brew Gentlemen Steel Garden, Downtown (free)
Wednesday, Aug. 10, 4-10 p.m. – Dancing Gnome, Sharpsburg (free)
Thursday, Aug. 11, 7-10 p.m. – Brewer & VIP Event at Cinderlands Warehouse, Strip District
Thursday, Aug. 11, 6-10 p.m. – Trace Brewing, Bloomfield (free)
Friday, Aug. 12, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. – Conference & Network Event at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh, Green Tree
Friday, Aug. 12, 7-10 p.m. – Bottle Share at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh, Green Tree
Friday, Aug. 12, 9:30 p.m. – Comedy Show at Arcade Comedy Theater, Downtown
Saturday, Aug. 13, 5- 9 p.m. – Barrel & Flow Festival at The Stacks at 3 Crossingss, Strip District. VIP admission is at noon with 3 p.m. entry for Early Admission Ticket-holders
Saturday, Aug. 13, 10 p.m. – After Party at Thunderbird Cafe, Lawrenceville
Sunday, Aug. 14, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. – Brewers Brunch at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh, Green Tree