Our goal is for beer bloggers and writers from around the world to remark, “Wow, Buffalo represented strong!” Craft beer is thriving in the Buffalo/Niagara region and we want everyone at the annual Beer Bloggers Conference in Tampa to know about it.
Buffalo is already known for its blizzards and chicken wings. Well, craft beer pairs well with both.
Last week, I collected beer from eight different breweries in Western New York. A grand total is 16 cases of beer has been shipped and is now resting safely (and refrigerated) in the Tampa Waterside Marriott’s cooler. Four cases were taken right off the canning line. Another four were packaged within a week. Not only are we bringing lots of beer, but lots of fresh beer.
Representatives from Visit Buffalo Niagara approached me about attending the event a few months earlier. Since then, we’ve been planning out strategies, collecting beer, printing “beer passports,” shipping beer and designing T-shirts.
When planning vacations and business trips, travelers now search for craft beer destinations; “beer tourism” is thriving. With 20+ breweries in Erie and Niagara County, Buffalo has become one such destination. Buffalo was recently listed by Redfin as the #2 Best City for Beer Lovers behind Pittsburgh.
The conference is more than just a venue for showing how great Buffalo’s beer is; it’s also a chance to network, learn and connect with other industry professionals.
The Beer Bloggers Conference is packed solid all weekend with educational seminars, dinner and beer pairings and excursions to Tampa breweries. But perhaps the best event is called the “Night of Many Bottles,” where participants are asked to bring a six-pack of any craft beer for sharing. Let’s hope this event is not followed by the “Morning Hangover of Many Hours.”
Professional seminars include “Increase your Followers and Engagement on Social Media,” and “Better Beer Writing.” A signature event called “Live Beer Blogging” is also planned. At this event, participants taste ten beers from ten breweries in 50 minutes, each of whom has five minutes to pour and explain the beer while you taste, judge and write your views on social media. (If a rash of rapid-fire check-ins appear on my blog or social media- now you understand why.)
At this conference, we will represent Buffalo and give everyone a taste of home. Without the help of local breweries, this would not have been possible. Thanks to the following breweries that have helped make our beer table varied and our selection impressive:
And special thanks to Chuck Alessi and Try-It Distributing for helping us find a way to ship this precious cargo.
Next stop, Tampa.