Did anyone go to 'Dallas Winter Warmer'?

Discussion in 'Southwest' started by mattisloco, Dec 17, 2012.

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  1. mattisloco

    mattisloco Devotee (414) Feb 13, 2007 Texas
    Beer Trader

    Just curious?

    I was turned off by the price, location and the fact Total Wine was involved. I only saw one beer I hadn't had which was the Kickin Chicken from Santa Fe. I'm sure there were some firkins also but I haven't heard one way or the other if this would be an event I should attend in the future?

  2. randal

    randal Initiate (80) Apr 21, 2004 Colorado

    I went and it was a nice time.They really kept the lines and crowds to a minimum.

    Community Brewing was there and I had not tried them before as well as Firewheel Brewing. Lakewood had a couple of firkins of their Temptress milk stout - one with espresso beans and the other with mint.

    The weather was amazing - really the only downside was the food which was just hotdogs, chips and pretzels.
    mattisloco likes this.
  3. DanzBorin

    DanzBorin Initiate (0) Apr 11, 2012 Texas

    An Untappd "friend" was drinking some Barrel Aged Temptress and I would figure this would have been at an event like this.
  4. Heretic42

    Heretic42 Devotee (411) Aug 31, 2011 Texas
    Beer Trader

    A couple of friends and I went and had a good time. It was a nice opportunity to try a bunch of beers I had missed or passed on over the last few months (I manage to miss Pumpkinator every year).

    The weather definitely helped the experience and there was also a deal from http://www.voicedailydeals.com/dallas/ (yet another local groupon clone) that cut the price for us in half. I probably wouldn't have gone at full price.

    They basically failed on the food front, which from what I heard at the festival, was the fault of the caterer. Combined with no in-and-out privileges meant we basically had no lunch.
  5. enashbeerfest

    enashbeerfest Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2010 Tennessee

    Hey guys, I actually produced the Dallas Winter Warmer and am happy to see that you guys are talking about it. The price was set so we could keep the event smaller and focus on top quality beers, high end glassware and an overal increased experience. Hosting the event at ATT PAC did provide challenges such as the food issues. When we decided to work together and stick with Wolfgang Puck catering we were provided with an extensive menu, seen online and the expectation that they could handle the crowd. However on Saturday when the event began I discovered that they critically had failed, despite attempting to rectify the matter throughout the day. Outside of that, the event did run smoothly, and as everyone said there were no lines, no lack of drinking water, stellar beers, and an overall good experience. We will be back in 2013, with much more food, but still a small crowd to provide the ultimate craft beer tasting in Dallas.

    Cheers and thanks for your support-Matt
  6. corbey

    corbey Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2006 Texas

    I too thought it was a very nice event. Perfect weather, good beers, and having it at the ATT PAC meant that you could ride DART rail down from most parts of town.

    True, not a lot of super rare beers, but most were good, and I got to try the SA Bishop's Barrell #1 and Ranger Creek Small Batch #3 for the first time. Enjoyed them both.
  7. thirdeye11

    thirdeye11 Disciple (397) Feb 3, 2009 Texas
    Beer Trader

    I got to meet Matt, the event organizer, in the midst of the hectic (for him) day. The crowd was pretty small for the venue, perhaps even smaller than expected. The price point had a lot to do with that. I doubt there were ever more than 800-900 people at any given time.

    I have very few complaints really. My biggest being that they stopped pouring abruptly at 4:35pm and it was ordered by Dallas police. Why were police shutting it down? I didn't see any drunken shenanigans. I wasn't even drinking at that point, but I may have opted to try 1 or 2 more samples I'd missed out on if I knew it was going to happen. Last call is one thing. That's when you warn people we're not pouring for much longer, so get your beers now.That should have probably happened at 4:30 and then they could stop around 4:45pm. I understand the need to get people out by 5pm, and 15 minutes should be plenty. Probably my only real suggestion for next year would be to post a schedule and stick to it. The event was slated to run from 12 - 5pm, so if it stops at 4:35pm, then that's what you should state.

    The beer selection was fantastic (you guys know how hard it is to get one off beers in Texas?) and it followed the theme of winter higher ABV beers well. Personally I don't go to beer festivals to eat, so the lack of food was not a complaint for me. I always eat prior to beer festivals and it lasts me 4-5 hours without issue.

    I agree that the price point was exceptionally high. Even if we were allowed to do unlimited tasters at a festival in Texas (we're not) the lack of ability to bring in unlicensed breweries that are not sold here year round, is a turn off from a festival perspective. Given that fact, I can't justify $56.50 (with fees) for a single ticket, no matter how good the beer festival is. Alright, maybe if Tool or some ridiculous headline musical act was playing, then I'd pay that price.

    In any event, I know Matt is committed to making the event better next year, and holding it at a place that won't charge such exorbitant venue fees. I enjoyed the festival and think it will continue to be a good event for this city and region.


    PS: Total Wine wasn't involved in the event. Local retailer Sigel's was though.

    PPS: Why was the location a turn off? It was really nice. Surrounded by Dallas architecture, access via Dart Rail, lots of parking for $5 nearby, clean bathrooms. I'm curious, what would be ideal and better for a beer festival? I'm not saying unequivocally that the location was perfect (I couldn't do my festival there, it's not large enough) but I thought it was really nice and unique.
    enashbeerfest and cfh64 like this.
  8. mattisloco

    mattisloco Devotee (414) Feb 13, 2007 Texas
    Beer Trader

    The location was a turn off because I had no idea about a limited number of tickets being sold. I was at a packed event in that area earlier in the year, Traffic and Dart Rail were a mess.

    Now that I'm better educated about the event I will consider attending the event. I think the price needs to drop some but maybe not a lot. The smaller crowd by limiting tickets makes me think this wasn't way over priced and I'm a huge fan of quality over quanity.
  9. corbey

    corbey Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2006 Texas

    I think people were disappointed in the food more because the pre-publicity had promised "tasty bites from Wolfgang Puck," not because we normally expect to eat great food at beer festivals.

    At the time I ordered my ticket online, you could enter the code "SIGEL" to receive a $10 discount. With the fees, the total came to $46.50. By using that venue, which I liked, I suppose they were also obligated to use the ATT PAC ticketing service, with its exorbitant fees. The price was ameliorated somewhat by the fact that people who wanted to drink more could buy additional sampling cards for only $2.00.

    Who's Tool?
  10. mattisloco

    mattisloco Devotee (414) Feb 13, 2007 Texas
    Beer Trader

    You shut your mouth
    fragilehearted and thirdeye11 like this.
  11. thirdeye11

    thirdeye11 Disciple (397) Feb 3, 2009 Texas
    Beer Trader

    Yeah I see why you were disappointed, and so was Matt the organizer. He was promised Wolfgang Puck food, and got some hot dogs. Plus they ran out in no time.
  12. corbey

    corbey Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2006 Texas

    Another thought about the ticket prices: I think the Flying Saucer beer fests were $40 at the door this year, so maybe the price for Dallas Winter Warmer wasn't so far out of line. It was that service charge that really gouged you.
  13. thirdeye11

    thirdeye11 Disciple (397) Feb 3, 2009 Texas
    Beer Trader

    Yeah I didn't think the "discounted" price was unreasonable, but for the first 2-3 weeks single tickets were $56.50 with fees, and I thought that was unreasonable. It's obvious other people felt the same way, because tickets just weren't moving at those prices.
  14. reverseapachemaster

    reverseapachemaster Aspirant (244) Sep 21, 2012 Texas
    Beer Trader

    I declined to go mostly due to price and from what I could understand from the information online it didn't look like the beer selection was going to be much more than BMC and BMC "craft" beers. Seems like that wasn't the case but I was able to drink plenty of other delicious beers the same day around bars that didn't charge me $60 for 24oz of beer.
  15. thirdeye11

    thirdeye11 Disciple (397) Feb 3, 2009 Texas
    Beer Trader

    Part of the problem here is that TABC only allows on premise locations (bars, festivals, etc) to sell one person, 24oz of beer at one time. So the festival experience is slightly diminished because of this. In any case, it was a good festival and I would recommend going in the future. I think the venue will be different next year, so the fees should be lower.

    Also, I don't personally think it's fair to compare a bar experience to that of a festival. You get to meet brewers, brewery reps, meet lots of great beer people, try lots of beers in small quantities to see what's new without buying a full pint, listen to live music, check out neat food options (hopefully), check out interesting vendors, and much more. I also realize though that festivals also aren't for everyone.
  16. Lutter

    Lutter Initiate (0) Jun 30, 2010 Texas

    Not true for bars... they can sell you as much as they want (beer towers, 1L mugs of german beer, etc..). Festivals I believe you're right, as I've never seen more than 24oz offered in the ticket price (but always with additional tickets available).
  17. reverseapachemaster

    reverseapachemaster Aspirant (244) Sep 21, 2012 Texas
    Beer Trader

    Right, they can only give you 24oz of beer on your admission ticket under TABC rules. It's unfortunate and definitely not the organizer's fault but it's part of the reason why I thought $56 or whatever it came to was unrealistically high when I'd have to buy more tickets or stamp cards or whatever to sample more beer. For me, I didn't think there was good value in the beer selection to justify the price.

    Sometimes you can meet brewers and their reps. A lot of times the beer is being poured by volunteers who don't have a clue about what they are pouring. I can also sample beers without buying a full pint, meet great beer people, listen to live music and check out neat food options at several beer bars around DFW. I'm not anti-festival but I don't think each one is a magical experience, either.
  18. thirdeye11

    thirdeye11 Disciple (397) Feb 3, 2009 Texas
    Beer Trader

    Not legally. Maybe a 1L gets by because its close to 24oz, but every tower of beer or pitcher I've ever seen sold in Texas requires 2 people to purchase it. You're welcome to review the TABC code and verify that, but it's there somewhere. I'm on a mobile and don't have time at the moment.
  19. blatherbeard

    blatherbeard Initiate (0) Sep 30, 2007 Texas

    While not legal, i know places that sell beer towers and buckets to single ppl all the time.

    Albeit, its usually within a group setting(while playing pool, darts etc.)

    and obviously a cheap night if im going that route :wink:
  20. enashbeerfest

    enashbeerfest Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2010 Tennessee

    appreciate your support and kind words. Given how fast we put this event together I thought the beer line up was pretty solid, especially with the strictness of the TABC. 2013, will be much improved as we will have 6+ months to really blow it out of the water.

  21. enashbeerfest

    enashbeerfest Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2010 Tennessee

    Now you know and you will go. Next year tickets will be $40 and will have minimal fees as we likely will be at a new venue, and as always we are about quality not quantity so attendance will be limited to 2000.
  22. enashbeerfest

    enashbeerfest Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2010 Tennessee

    The venue royally screwed up on the food, I had to spend almost 2 hours kick their shit asses into gear to try and salvage what we could. We even tried to order 200 pizzas but no place in the area could do it in a timely fashion. Also a note on the price, I set it higher as I planned to ensure there was enough beer for the entire event, in fact next year we likely will sell the drink cards for even less. Cheers!
  23. enashbeerfest

    enashbeerfest Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2010 Tennessee

    You obviously never looked at our website or facebook page. Every single participating brewery was on the website the moment the confirmed and we started posting the beer list 10 days out. One thing I can promise you is that you will never see BMC products at our events. I have built my business on supporting and promoting independent american craft beer!

    Cheers and hope to see you in 2013.
  24. enashbeerfest

    enashbeerfest Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2010 Tennessee

    Also wanted to point out, out of 38 breweries, only 3 of them were not represented by a brewery employee.
  25. enashbeerfest

    enashbeerfest Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2010 Tennessee

    Chad appreciate all of your kind words and support here. Can't wait for 2013, and would love to maybe have you part of our committee. Hit me up via email---matt@rhizomeproductions.com
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