Beat the Heat Winter Beer Fest at Venue of Scottsdale a sweaty mess

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If you’re going to host an event called Beat the Heat Winter Beer Fest in Scottsdale in August, you should probably make sure your packed venue has air conditioning. For the beer enthusiasts who filled up the Venue of Scottsdale yesterday hoping to sample brews in a chilled out atmosphere, the event was a major disappointment, since the only thing cooling off attendees were some swamp coolers that failed to eliminate the sweaty stickiness permeating the air.

The heat didn’t just start once you were inside. The event was supposed to start at 1 p.m., and my friends and I got there around 1:30 p.m. The line outside was huge, so instead of waiting in the blistering sun, we headed across the street to Dos Gringos for some drinks. Once we came back, I could see why the line was so huge–there were only two people checking ID’s for everyone going in. Compared to another beer festival, Tour de Fat, the event seemed very disorganized.

Once inside, we got 20 drink samples (tickets were only $25, and there was beer and tequila). The cool thing was that most of the vendors didn’t even mark down that you got a sample–at the Cruz tequila booth, I got two shots and a margarita without having my punch card marked at all. It was definitely a great place to get drunk for very little money if you had a sober driver, and I did like being able to sample so many different types of drinks.

I’m no beer expert, but prize for best logo goes to Sleepy Dog Brewery, located in Tempe. The dog’s tongue reminds me a little of my pooch, Chico Hombre, so of course I’m biased.

Besides the drinks, there were some food samplings and a cover band.

I think it would have been a really fun event if we all weren’t sweating to death inside. Hopefully next year, they’ll stay true to their name and actually help Valley residents beat the heat with some air conditioning.