Firkfest Returns and You Don’t Want To Miss It


Photo by John Holzer

At 2pm on November 8th, 2013 I created @CaskAleLA on twitter, and within 45 minutes I received the following message from some dude called @OCbeerblog:

At the time I was fairly new to the Los Angeles beer community and didn’t know Greg Nagel (OCBeerBlog) or how long this whole @CaskAleLA thing would last for. But here we are: 3 weeks before the SECOND annual Firkfest and Los Angeles has a legitimate cask community. A big part of that is thanks to Mr. Nagel and Firkfest.

Ask anyone who attended Firkfest last year and they will tell you what a well-organized festival it was. Sure GABF and Shelton Brother’s festival may be unbeatable in terms of quantity or quality, but both those events can be pretty overwhelming too. Firkfest on the other hand just feels like a party a friend is hosting in the park. While one side of Farmer’s Park  was lined with amazing firkins from California’s best breweries, the rest of the park was full of people playing games, enjoying a picnic lunch and soaking up the sun. All that ultra-serious craft beer nonsense completely disappeared and people just enjoyed themselves – which is something that can be rare at an event like this.

Greg purposely keeps this event small in order to ensure a comfortable atmosphere and no waiting for even the rarest of beers, so make sure you buy your tickets soon or else you may be out of luck.

Below is the official press release for Firkfest – don’t miss out. Tickets are available here:

Orange County Cask Ale Festival

Local Beer Writer Greg Nagel is back with Firkfest ‘15, a Unique Cask Beer Festival in Downtown Anaheim; Adds Local Chef Chili Cook Off

Anaheim, CA (Feb 25, 2015)– FirkFest, Orange County’s first cask beer festival, is set to take place on March 21, 2015 from 12 to 4 P.M. on Farmers Park in the Anaheim Packing District located at 400 S Anaheim Blvd, Anaheim. Firkfest highlights ‘Old World’ beer serving technique and blends them with new creativity of today’s burgeoning local craft brewers. Thirty-four Southern California breweries will participate in this unique event that pays homage to how beer has been traditionally served for centuries.

“This year I also wanted to highlight local chefs that have a great craft beer program backing up their inventive food,” says Nagel. Back east, beer and chili festivals are called a “Powderkeg Festival” for obvious reasons.

 LA Times named Firkfest one of the “Top four Southern California craft beer festivals worth the drive.”

 “Firkfest was one of the best events we did in 2014 and I hope [they] plan to bring it back,” says Anders Nilbrink of Firestone Walker.

“Beer festivals need a fresh, authentic approach, I want to focus on unique nuances of modern craft beer.,” says organizer Greg Nagel of “My favorite part of craft beer is that it’s always evolving. We have received a lot of brewery interest; normally I have to nag brewers for weeks to get a response. With Firkfest, I have breweries nagging me if they can participate every day. It’s weird to have a brewery wait-list.”


The name Firkfest is a spin on the name “Firkin” which is a 10-gallon cask. A cask of beer is traditionally considered “real ale,” meaning the carbonation is supplied naturally from the yeast finishing secondary fermentation in the vessel. Cask beer is served directly from the vessel in which it finished fermenting and is normally served at cellar temp 50-55F. Cask beer is also a one-time blank canvas for brewers, who typically add specialty ingredients for the one-time serving. The use of extra dry hops, coffee, tea, spices, fruit, and peppers are commonly added to base beers.

Participating Chefs/Restaurants in the Chili Cookoff:

Chef Cody – Grits Fullerton
Chef Shachi – Adya
Chef Andrew – Iron Press
Chef Greg – Haven Gastropub / Provisions
Chef Alex – Sealegs Wine Bar
Chef Brandon – Barley Forge
Chef Justin – Pizzeria Ortica
Chef Grant – The Crow Bar and Kitchen
Chef Lynda – Healthy Junk & Junk Bar (vegan)
Chef Stephanie – Seabirds Kitchen (vegan)

Visit for more information.



Firkfest was born after standing in a 200 person line at a beer festival for a small sample of Noble Ale Works Naughty Sauce ‘White Russian’ on cask.  Interest for great cask beer is alive and well in Orange County; a beer festival that focuses on it is as well. Inspire Artistic Minds is the sole beneficiary of proceeds for the event.


Located at 400 S. Anaheim Blvd, Anaheim CA 92805
Press Inquiries via Greg Nagel at 714-321-0897,
Twitter/Instagram: @Firkfest
Tickets: $50 or / Includes glass, unlimited beer tastes and 10 chili tastes.