Last year was the first time in modern history that alcohol sales of any kind were permitted at the fair. The addition of alcohol had been debated for years… but as this is an event that features a cow made of butter and 17 different types of food on a stick, I think a glass of fermented grapes should be the least of anyone’s concerns.
Wine from 18 Ohio wineries will be available in rotation, including Breitenbach Winery, Burnet Ridge Winery, Chalet Debonne Vineyard, Deer’s Leap Winery, Ferrante Winery, Hanover Winery, Henke Winery, Klingshirn Winery, Laurello Vineyards, Maize Valley Winery, Meranda-Nixon Winery, Raven’s Glenn, Swiss Heritage Winery, Terra Cotta Vineyards, Troutman Vineyards, Valley Vineyards, Vinoklet Winery and the Winery at Wolf Creek.
Ohio-made beers on tap will include Great Lakes Burning River Ale, Wooden Shoe Lager, Elevator Dark Horse Lager, Elevator Mogabi and Columbus Brewing Pale Ale.
Contrary to the Ohio-agriculture-showcase focus of the fair, available beer will also include Sam Adams, Guiness, Coors Light, Bud, Bud Light, Michelob Ultra, Miller Lite and Smirnoff Ice (bucketing in with beer for brevity.) To be fair, I guess, Budweiser does have a brewery in Columbus, as does Sam Adams in Cincinnati. Smirnoff? I got nothin’.
Beer and wine sales will be restricted to the Marketplace Building, the Taste of Ohio Cafe and the Celeste Center during select concerts. Alcoholic beverages will not permitted outside of those areas.
The fair runs from July 25 through August 5. Admission for adults is $10.
Related: In the Ohio State Fair homebrew competition, a record 485 beers were judged in 24 different styles. Christopher Schaeffer from Lakewood won Best of Show for his cream ale. The lengthy list of winners is online.