By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
STILLWATER, OK – The inaugural Craft Beer Forum of Oklahoma will be held on Saturday, April 7 at Oklahoma State University. Registration will begin at 10 a.m. in the College of Human Sciences, on the OSU campus in Stillwater.
This educational event is hosted by the OSU School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. It is open to the public with a range of events and ticket options.
“The School of Hospitality and Tourism Management is proud to host this inaugural event as part of our continuous effort to be a leader in hospitality education,” says Ben Goh, assistant dean and school director. “The 2017 Wine Forum of Oklahoma was truly a groundbreaking event. With the addition of The Craft Beer Forum, we will continue this legacy by educating students and the public on craft beers and brewers. A natural fit for Oklahoma.”
The Craft Beer Forum is an experiential learning opportunity for students and the public about the quality, flavor and diversity of craft beer. It will introduce participants to the innovative culture of Oklahoma-connected craft brewers; and promote the responsible enjoyment of beer.
The program includes keynote speakers, seminars, and lunch, all culminating in the inaugural Pint-N-Bite Tasting. The range of seminars includes beginner, intermediate and advanced sessions with a variety of educational options for attendees.
The Stein-N-Snack lunch package includes a barbecue box lunch, choice of enrollment in each forum session, and entrance to the Pint-n-Bite Tasting. Tickets are $75.
The Pint-n-Bite Grand Tasting will include tastings from 25 breweries and 20 chefs from across the country. Enrollment in the forum’s seminars and entrance to the Pint-N-Bite Tasting is included in the lunch tickets. Tickets are $50.
The event honorary chair is Eric Marshall, founder of Marshall Brewing Company, Tulsa’s first production craft microbrewery. Marshall has a degree in international business and German language from the University of Tulsa. He studied brewing in Germany and apprenticed in many breweries while there.
The Craft Beer Forum, like the popular Wine Forum of Oklahoma, is a student-led and student-managed event.
Chris White, president and CEO of White Labs Inc., will welcome forum participants. White Labs manufacturers yeast cultures and provides fermentation services to brewing, wine and distilling industries. White is a co-author of Yeast: The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation and was a co-designer of the popular board game, BrewMaster: The Craft Beer Game.
The keynote address will be delivered by Belgian native, Luc “Bobo” Van Mechelen, President of the US Sector of Manneken-Brussels Imports. Considered the ambassador for Chimay beers, Van Mechelen has led the growth of the Belgian Trappist beer brand in the US.
Brewers include: American Solera, Angry Scotsman Brewer, Anthem Brewing Company, Black Mesa, Coop Ale Works, Craft & Barrel, Heirloom Rustic Ales, The Indian Brewery Company, Iron Monk, Lazy Circles, Marshall Brewing Company, Prairie Artisan Ales, Elgin Park, Guinness, Renaissance Brewing, Roughtail Brewing Company, Stonecloud Brewing, Twisted Spike Brewery, Vanessa House and Vortex Brewery.
Members of the Student Committee include: Jared Fimple, Nico Gerbrecht, Zoe Huffer, Reilly Kidwell, Dylan Koth, Marshall Olderbak, Christos Papadopolus, Bobbie Shields, Adele Wilson, Jacy Wilson and Kathrine Wolfe.
Forum sponsors are: The McNellies Group, Hal Smith Restaurants, Dupree Sports & Screenprinting, OnCue, Wilson Auto Family, The Atherton Hotel, Keith Ashburn, Rebecca & Kyle Eastham, and Sandy Lee.
Registration for seminars will begin Saturday at 11 a.m. If you are attending the Pint-n-Bite Tasting only, registration will open at 6:30 p.m. Registration will be located in the Great Hall of the College of Human Sciences North Wing. You must be 21 to attend.
To learn more about the Craft Beer Forum or to purchase tickets, visit craftbeerforumofoklahoma.com.