The curtain has come down on the inaugural Thai Craft Beer Week with the organizers, beer distributor Group B, declaring it a great success.
The 9 day celebration of the nation’s craft brewers which lasted from Friday 20th – Saturday 28th October saw a staggering 90 events and activities run in 20 provinces across the country.
Event coordinator Bamee Prapavee hailed the festival as the first ‘decentralized celebration’ of craft beer in the Southeast Asian kingdom, where craft beer production is heavily regulated, meaning it was the first time such a coordinated nationwide event has been held as opposed to a traditional beer festival or exhibition.
“It’s wonderful to see the craft beer community across the country celebrating the creativity and talent of our local brewers” said Group B Director Ms. Prapavee, continuing “Despite the absence of any central support for the event the community has come together to show its resilience and we are really grateful to everyone who has supported this year’s Craft Beer Week and their commitment to building a strong Thai craft beer scene”.
Unlike trade fairs or festivals this innovative event unfolded organically as individual bars, restaurants, shops and brewers collaborated to organize a host of activities across the country ranging from beer launches and exclusive tastings to cat-catching, egg-laying, Thai traditional music and other cultural events enriching the experience for participants.
The official information hub, www.thaicraftbeerweek.com, served as the digital compass guiding enthusiasts to events in outlets near them.
The absence of a centralized venue paved the way for user-generated events that showcase the vibrant craft beer culture at local establishments encouraging exploration and fostering a sense of adventure amongst curious consumers.
The extended week of events highlighted the diversity and richness of Thailand’s burgeoning craft beer culture. Festivities were spearheaded by Bangkok and its suburbs with the centrally located city, which hosted the majority of the events, emerging as the epicentre of the beery extravaganza. Events were also run in provincial centres such as Chiang Mai and Khon Kaen
The festival of beer has not only invigorated the craft beer scene but has also fostered a sense of community among businesses and consumers alike. Held strategically at the end of the rainy season, the week came as a timely boost for businesses that had been experiencing a seasonal slowdown over the monsoon months.
Plans are already underway for a bigger and better Thai Craft Beer Week in 2024 with Ms Prapavee and her team looking forward to working with outlets across the country, many of which have been stalwart supporters of the industry from the beginning – championing Thai craft beer before it achieved mainstream recognition.