When spring is sprung, getting outside and enjoying a beer or some wine tops many weekend checklists. So, it’s no surprise a few wine and beer festivals are on tap across Alabama this spring.
The season foams up with two ultimate signs of spring, beer and the blooming plants and trees at Bellengrath Gardens in the Theodore community in Mobile County.
Here are the ABCs on Alabama’s spring wine and beer festivals, including events in Albertville, Birmingham, and Calera.
Bellingrath’s Beers and Blooms (Theodore)
The third all-day beer and music festival at Bellingrath Gardens and Home features about a dozen breweries, mostly from Mobile, Fairhope, Dothan, and Birmingham. Musical performers hail from Gulf Breeze, Huntsville, New Orleans, and Pensacola. A half-dozen food trucks will be onsite. Gates open at 11 a.m. and the first band takes the stage at noon. Tickets, which also include admission to the gardens, are $30 for members and $35 for nonmembers until March 1, then rise to $35 and $40. Children’s tickets are $15 for ages 2-12.
Spring Wine Festival (Calera)
Stomp some grapes and drink some of the (foot-free) traditional and local-fruit wines at Corbin Farms’ Spring Wine Festival, set from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. at the family-owned winery and event venue on Highway 87 near Interstate 65. The festival, open to all ages, features arts and crafts vendors, food trucks, and musical performances. Advance adult tickets (21 and up)—which includes two drink tickets, a ticket to the grape-stomping booth, discounts at the winery, and a tote bag—are $27. Children’s tickets ($8) include a ticket for a soft drink and admission to the grape stomping. Tickets purchased at the gate are $30/$10.
Magic City Mimosa Festival (Birmingham)
Bottomless mimosas. If that’s not enough inducement to check out the Magic City Mimosa Festival, local restaurants are dishing food (separate purchase) and bands are jamming on stage at Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark. Admission is limited to 21 and over, and IDs are mandatory at the gate. The bubbly and OJ blends start pouring at 1 p.m. and flow until 5 p.m. Tickets are $35 (plus a $3.25 fee when purchased online).
West Alabama Food and Wine Festival (Northport)
Main Street is closed to traffic for the festival, which is in its 10th year. A benefit for the West Alabama Food Bank, attendees get a souvenir glass to sample red, white, rose, and sparkling wine from three Alabama distributors. Nearly two dozen restaurants and markets serve canapes, tapas and other small-plate dishes, and larger offerings of pasta, and kabobs. Pastries, chocolates, mini cakes, and other sweets top it all off. Local and state beers, along with Clyde May’s “Alabama-style” whiskey also are available. Early-bird tickets sold online are $85 plus $6.81 fee for VIP (early admission and private lounge seating), and $60 plus $5.81 fee for general admission. After April 14, ticket prices go up by $15.
Taps and Tunes (Albertville)
Held at Sand Mountain Amphitheater, the third Taps and Tunes brewfest offers samples from more than 130 beers and ciders from nearly three-dozen breweries. Entertainment includes bands, games, food trucks, and kid-friendly activities. The festival starts at 2 p.m. and ends at 6 p.m. Tickets available online are $25 plus fees; designated drivers pay $5 plus fees.
Magic City Wine Fest (Birmingham)
Railroad Park plays host to the ultimate happy hour, the Magic City Wine Fest. Ticket holders can sample the wares of more than two dozen wineries, a dozen breweries and cideries, and other adult beverage-makers including Jack Daniel’s whiskeys, and Twelve5’s Rebel hard coffees. Food vendors include Simone’s Kitchen ATL, the Tamale Queen, and Ivory LeShore’s gourmet bread pudding and cheesecakes. The event is from 6 p.m.–9 p.m. Only people 21 and older will be admitted; ID is checked at the gate. Admission only for adults 21 and over, and ID is required at the gate. A portion of ticket sales benefits Railroad Park. General admission is $55 plus tax and fees in advance and $65 on fest day. VIP tickets (early admission, VIP seating with food samples) are $85 plus tax and fees in advance and $95 (etc.) at the gate. Designated driver tickets are $20.