At noon on Saturday, December 7, the third installment of the 12 South Winter Warmer will return to Nashville's Sevier Park. This event is one of the hottest beer festival tickets in the South, and it sold out in less than 20 minutes last year. If you have any aspirations of drinking the area's finest craft beer outdoors in the Nashville winter, make sure you are up early and prepared when tickets go on sale on Friday, October 11 at 9 a.m. CST and Saturday, October 12 at 8 a.m. CST.
The 12 South Winter Warmer brings a quality, outdoor beer tasting to the city of Nashville and the Southeast region during a time of year when beer festivals are few and far in between. Rhizome Productions, organizers of this event and several other craft beer events in the South, have designed the Winter Warmer to pair the finest cold weather brews with winter's chilly temperatures. Stouts, porters, barleywines, and many other robust, warming brews (many of which are rare or limited) are served up by some of the finest and most respected breweries found in Tennessee and throughout the country. This is not the type of festival where you are going to find the beer you see and drink every day. The focus of the 12 South Winter Warmer is truly about quality, not quantity.
In addition to the jaw-dropping lineup of tasty brews, some of Nashville's finest restaurants, food trucks, and culinary artisans are on site providing attendees with ridiculously delicious grub. Musicians have yet to be named for this year's Winter Warmer, but you can expect to enjoy some of the best and most entertaining musical acts the area has to offer.
Due to last year's 20 minute, mad scramble for tickets, this year's ticket sale will be divided into two days to increase everyone's chances. Tickets will be sold online on Friday, October 11 at 9 a.m. CST and Saturday, October 12 at 8 a.m. CST (keep an eye on the Winter Warmer website and Facebook page for ticket links). General admission tickets will be sold online for $60 each plus fees from the ticket service provider. This ticket tier grants you entrance to the festival, a keepsake tasting glass, unlimited samples, and access to food and musical entertainment. This year, there will also be a special "Craft Brewed" ticket tier for $75 plus fees. This tier gets you everything listed above plus a custom 12 South Winter Warmer and Craft Brewed growler, a growler fill at Craft Brewed after the festival, as well as access to the brewery after party at Craft Brewed immediately following the Winter Warmer. Tickets in both tiers will still be incredibly limited, so do not shuffle your feet if you wish attend. Snatch up those tickets while you can!
I have been lucky enough to attend both of the previous Winter Warmers, and my full support and endorsement are behind this event. The 12 South Winter Warmer just has a charm to it that I simply have not seen replicated at other festivals. It has low attendance numbers to keep you from feeling rushed or left with the feeling that you are constantly missing out on the best beers being poured. The beers are beyond stellar, with a bevy of one-offs and rare treats being poured at seemingly every station. Finally, the atmosphere. An outdoor venue subjecting you to the winter weather has you bundled up and talking in huddled groups. The cold and the great beers seem to bring everyone together. Sure, the motivation is initially to warm up in numbers, but it leads to great chats with strangers and a fantastic sense of camaraderie. It's just a perfect storm of circumstances that makes the Winter Warmer a fantastic experience. I urge you all to do yourself a favor and attempt to get some tickets. If you succeed, make a weekend out of it, experience Nashville, and enjoy one our region's finest beer festivals. I promise it will all be worth the trip and that you will not leave Tennessee disappointed. Prost!