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Mondial de la Biere - Montreal Beer festival 2013

Discussion in 'Canada' started by whitehouse50, Feb 20, 2013.

  1. Hello,

    I'm starting to plan for a trip with my wife and friends to Montreal to check out the Mondial beer festival. I saw there is no entry fee which is great and you pay as you go. I was wondering if any BAs could suggest which days are the best for the festival, pros and cons, and any other recommendations for a fun experience in the city. We all love craft beers and appreciate any ideas.

    Cheers!

    Andrew
     
  2. I'd be happy to fill you in as best as I can!

    The festival usually runs Wednesday/Thursday to Sunday if I am not mistaken. The earlier you go in the week, the better; this is due to the fact that the rarer stuff runs out of stock quickly, especially the American beers! If that isn't a concern for you, come whenever you please. There is no entry fee, and pours are purchased using tickets (which are 1 dollar each). This can go from 1 to 5 tickets, depending on the rarity/price of said beer.

    There are no real cons that I can think of, other than the fact that some people occasionally treat the event as a keg party. People like this are a minority though, thankfully. It can get crowded depending on the day, but that varies.

    I strongly suggest planning for the "after-parties"! Different brewpubs in Montreal offer all sorts of rarities, goodies and special brews each night after the festival. For example, night 1 is usually at Dieu Du Ciel, andf they'll bust out all sorts of great stuff just for the occasion.

    Beer may NOT be purchased at the festival, unfortunately, though there are a number of local operations which have permission to sell (there was a great mead stall last year...). Beer may not be brought onto the premises, so trades are a no-go for the festival proper. That said, if you bring some trade material into town I am certain you'll find some wonderful Montreal BAs willing to meet up after and introduce you to some delicious Quebec brews (myself included :D).

    As for fine dining or activities in Montreal, I can recommend a number of excellent establishments, but it would be better to know first what your likes and dislikes are. Hope that helps!
     
    Yoonisaykul and LarryAppleton like this.
  3. hoser

    hoser Savant (380) Alberta (Canada) Feb 17, 2003

    Sure the others guys from La Belle Province will tell you, there is a very small Vermont brewers night that is a do not miss. Think it has been at Benelux most recently.
     
  4. Yup, this fellow is correct! Not sure if it's always at Benelux though. Generally, they advertise these after-parties at the festival. At worst, I'll ask one of my buddies at Brasseurs du Monde later since he's well-connected, then let you know.
     
  5. This is awesome info! Thank you guys very much. I am intrigued about these after parties and the special brews that might be available. I'll have to keep my eyes open for these ads. At the moment the plan is to go Thurs-Sun so we will probably miss Wednesday, but we'll see what happens. This is a great to help with planning, as the date gets closer I'll BM you guys more specifics and maybe we can work out a trade or two. I'll do some more research in the Canada forum to see what else is good on Montreal.

    Cheers!
     
  6. hoser

    hoser Savant (380) Alberta (Canada) Feb 17, 2003

    Yeah sure Alain or MartinT could tell you all, it is the private import club that runs it.
     
  7. Yup, exactly. Pretty sure Alain imports more beer than the SAQ, lol!
     
  8. Me too please! Let me know also Please!!! Thanks.
     
  9. It's ok if you miss Wednesday. I find sometimes they don't have all the beers available yet. Looking forward to seeing how it plays out in the new venue.

    RE: In person trade = I've circumvented this once but that was when it was at Gare Windsor when you could get in by about 5-6 different places. Stuck in a backpack and none were the wiser! Since the move though, they keep a more tight control on the ins and outs.
     
  10. I haven't been to this thing in 100 years. In the past few years, which well known American breweries show up?
     
  11. Last year they had the following: allagash, arcadia, atwater, dark horse, dfh, dragonmead, elysian, founders, jolly pumpkin, lagunitas, new belgium, new holland, ommegang, pike, rogue, short's, smuttynose, white birch, coronado, odell, santan, thomas hooker... that's it for American. There was tonnes of stuff though! This year, I plan to sample a lot of Italian beer. Had Baladin's "Zucca" with the gf and she completely flipped out over it. Have to admit, it was a very impressive beer! Also, I have no other way to get my hands on any Italian stuff, sadly.
     
  12. Andrew, up untill last year I've been to this festival since it's birth when it used to be on the Old Port of Montreal. In a nut shell Thursday and Friday to me are the best days to go. The weekend can certainly get crowded and at night becomes more of a party atmosphere. Now do not misunderstand what I'm saying I partake in all levels but if I was going with my wife, I would prefer the week day afternoons. Great beers, great food, music, mixed crowd of people and child friendly.
     
  13. If you had the opportunity I would strongly suggest a trip to the Du Die Ciel brew pub. It's a short cab ride from Downtown Montreal. Great beers, great food and a great staff...
     
  14. I've gone most of them the last 6 years. Weds. is my favorite day as it is a quieter and less busy. The weekends are very crowded. I'm looking forward to them moving from the dark, dank confines of the convention center to the Palais de Congress - lighter, roomier, and closer to the brewpubs where the after-parties are held. Each night is a theme hosted by a different brewpub - sours, VT line-up, etc. Past hosts have been Cheval Blanc, Brouhaha, Dieu du Ciel, and Benelux. I like the pay-as-you-go arangement which allows you to come & go as you please - however, the tickets are $1 each and the good pours are 3-6 tickets, so you can easily spend quite a bit of cash in no time at all. Some of the smaller Quebec breweries have stopped attending - it is very expensive for them and are not paid for their beer. But there is always lots to taste in terms of imports & CN beers for us Americans, and US domestics for the Canadians! Something for everyone. Also, if it is still the same week as the big car racing series, hotel rooms get snapped-up reallly fast, so book in advance if you can.
     
  15. I think this year it is not the same week as race week in Montreal.
     
  16. Yes The Grand Prix is on a different weekend...Thank God!! The hotel rooms were tripled in price last year.
     
  17. The more I hear about what happened last year, the less I am inclined to spend my money at the Mondial. As noted above, many smaller breweries are NOT attending due to the large expense and the lack of remuneration. In addition, apparently the folks who run the Mondial had strict rules for the size of booths and whatnot. Rather than inform anyone that they were slightly over, the organizers waited until AFTER the fact, then fined everyone heavily. I heard that Unibroue got fined over a grand, which is absolutely nuts. To top all of that off, they don't pay people until about 70 days after; they go on vacation first. I think this year I'll stop in to taste some really hard to find stuff, things from Italian brewers maybe, then save my money for the after-parties (which are always awesome, and which give my money to the people who deserve it).
     
  18. I hear you. My favorite (and most brewer-friendly) Quebec beer fest continues to be the one at Chambly over Labor Day weekend - where you find all the small Quebec boutique brewers that have given up on Mondial - but no imports.
     
  19. I've never made it over to that fest... do the brewers bring out anything interesting or is it usually just regular offerings? I'll have to check it out. Pretty stoked for the DDC after-party this year, and I'm curious to see if that Vermont brewer night is happening.
     
  20. It's all kinds of good stuff, particularly on Friday. After-party at Bedondaine et Bedons Ronde down the street. Wonderful food to purchase too - especially cheeses. So far, Benelux has been the de facto host for VT Brewer's Association's contributions post-Mondial.
     
  21. Agree with Duchesse.
    To me, i go to le Mondial for imports and festival de Chambly for awesome locally made brews. Last year's edition had lots of nice exclusives & experimental stuff.
     
  22. Except the winning collaboration with Mark from The Bobcat.
     
  23. The collaboration gose of Bobcat/Loup Rouge that won at Chambly was still brewed at Loup Rouge in Sorel, with Mark assisting Jan-Phillipe there. Mark's version was brewed with J-P assisting at the Bobcat (two separate batches.) Several of Mark's beers have made it to the VT Brewer after-party at Benelux post-Mondial, though. Importing VT beers into Quebec continues to be problematic.
     
  24. Confirmed last night at dinner with Mark, J-P and Claude (fest director at Chambly.) Mark's batch is all gone, but J-P is on their second batch at Loup Rouge. Their anniversary party is coming up - taste it!
     

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