The History of Tahoe Brewfest

How this growing event became a premier brewfest celebrating the mountain culture of Lake Tahoe.

The Tahoe Brewfest was the brainchild of Deb Brown, founder and owner of Cold Water Brewery and Grill in 2017.  An early pioneer of the craft beer scene in Lake Tahoe, Deb had attended brewfest events in other regions and wanted an event that would celebrate the growing Tahoe brew scene and the beauty of our natural environment.

However, always one to think of others, Deb wanted her brewfest to support the local community, and in particular a local non-profit.  She chose the local Boys and Girls Club of Lake Tahoe, who provide vital out of school educational programs and activities for local children.  The Club’s mission is to provide a safe place for children to be when school is out and no-one is home.  The Club remains the non-profit partner today.


In 2017, the Tahoe Brewfest was born! 

In 2017, the inaugural event was held in the Cold Water Brewery parking lot.  Local favorites, Ike & Martin, played on the Brewery porch with around 10 regional breweries serving samples of their beer.  The organizers expected about 500 people, but underestimated the desire for a Brewfest as over 1500 attendees came to sample the beers and celebrate the start of the Brewfest.

This popularity sparked the move to the Heavenly Ski Resort Cal Base Lodge for 2018, where space was endless and the views of the lake and mountains spectacular.  That year the event grew to over 20 breweries, some from as far as San Diego, and over 3000 attendees.  

The Tahoe Brewfest Keeps Growing

The vibe of brews, bites and beautiful scenery was a hit and the event grew even bigger in 2019 with over 30 breweries from all over California and Nevada and guests traveling from as far as Canada and Germany!


Unfortunately, 2020 forced a hiatus due to the Statewide lockdown of major events.  Then in 2021, with a new venue in the center of town, with gorgeous grass fields, the Brewfest had to be postponed due to the Caldor Fire which threatened to engulf the South Shore.  

The event pushed ahead in early September and was a celebration of the strength of our local breweries and the community.  Not even fire can stop Tahoe from having a good time.

The 5th Annual Tahoe Brewfest

The Brewfest is back for its fifth year and it promises to be the best yet.  The Brewfest is now partnering with On Course Events, and will be located in the heart of South Lake Tahoe on Ski Run Blvd.

The Brewfest is easy walking and biking distance from anywhere in town and with over 20 beers to sample – you won’t want to be driving!  New for this year are a number of ciders, and a dedicated VIP area, in addition to all the local favorite brews.  



Live music will be provided by The Exchange and The Tribe and over twenty local vendors will be adding to the Tahoe vibe.  A variety of food trucks will be on hand to provide lunch and snacks and when the Brewfest closes at 5pm there will be three afterparties to chose from where Brewfest attendees will be treated to discounts and more great Tahoe beers.  

After two crazy years of pandemic and wildfire, we can’t wait to celebrate the return of the Tahoe Brewfest with you.

Early Bird Ticket Pricing Has Been Extended Through August 2nd

Early Bird VIP Tickets $50
VIP gets you in the doors at 12PM with endless sampling till 5PM
Not only are you set up with an extra hour of unlimited beer sampling, access to the Cold Water Brewery VIP Lounge & you’ll get a commemorative Tahoe Brewfest Stainless Steel mug to take home. 

Early Bird GA Tickets $35
GA gets you in the doors at 1PM with endless sampling till 5PM
– You miss out on the full VIP Experience, but still get to have an amazing day sampling craft beer in South Lake Tahoe

Designated Driver / Under 21 Tickets $10
This ticket is for designated drivers and all attendees under 21 years old. No sampling is included. 

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