Date: July 16-19 @ Richmond Convention Center
The founder of Variant Events, and the guy behind the popular Virginia Wine Expo, has been working on the National Beer Expo for over a year.
“I decided to do a national beer expo because a new era is dawning in the American craft beer industry and I wanted to create an event that was able to take advantage of this era,” Papajohn said.
Papajohn saw an opportunity to merge what’s great about wine tastings and events with craft beer.
He said that national beer events, like Denver’s Great American Beer Festival, do a great job incorporating tastings into their events, but a food component is part of what makes wine events great, and part of what he thinks will differentiate the National Beer Expo.
“What I want to do is create a multi-day, multi-event, craft beer event that is built around amazing craft beer and food,” he said.
The details are still in the works for the food component of the National Beer Expo, which is scheduled for July 16-19 at the Richmond Convention Center, but Papajohn says grand tasting, classes and retail for brewers, and events at area breweries and restaurants are definitely going to be part of the event, similar to the now seven-year-old Virginia Wine Expo, which will take place next month at the Richmond Convention Center.
During the year-long planning phase, Papajohn said he met with beer writers and enthusiasts and all the major distributors in Richmond.
“I would not have moved forward with this event if I did not have the support of the three major distrubtors in town – Loveland, Brown and Specialty… who are are willing to work with each other to make this event a success,” he said.
Papajohn says Virginia beers will be strongly featured during the event, with a primary focus on American beers, though international beers will also be a part of the festival.
Richmond.com will keep you posted as details are finalized for the July National Beer Expo, but for now, mark your calendar.