Brewfest draws thousands to Mohegan
A bit of a victim of its own success, the Brewfest led to a long line of people waiting in the casino pathways outside the convention area Saturday evening, as only so many people could be allowed into the ballroom at one time.
The setup of the event arguably was better and worse than the perennial favorite WineFest at Mohegan each winter. Better because there were abundant food and seating areas in front and to the side of the entertainment stage. Worse because the layout of the 150 brews created long lines feeding into areas of multiple beer pourers.
And most beer vendors seemed to be pouring from bottles, not as efficient as using a keg. So by the time you fought your way to the front of a line, you were too thirsty to get a good sense of what you were trying.
(I ended up taking the easy way out and sampling a couple of home brews being poured. I'm not proud.)
For WineFest, it seemed that more tent-like locations scattered around allow for shorter lines and better flow and conversation with pourers. Wine brands on tent tops are visible from a distance. Grouping the beer taps created more chaos Saturday, but it didn't seem to faze a mostly young crowd very much.
The air hockey, ping pong and TV screens showing football worked well, however. Expect a second Brewfest next year.