Real Ale Contest returns to Noah Webster House – We-Ha

Beer you won’t find anywhere else will be available in West Hartford at the Noah Webster Real Ale Harvest Fest.

Courtesy Image


The Noah Webster Real Ale Harvest Fest returns Saturday, September 10, 2022.

The annual event event is your chance to taste a beer you won’t find anywhere else. More than 20 brewers will create unique casks of real ale good for that day only, with one stipulation: their beer must include an ingredient from Noah Webster’s 18th-century garden or pantry. With over 100 items to choose from, such as gooseberries, honey, hyssop and nutmeg, creativity shines in this friendly competition between your favorite craft breweries.

Hops growing on the fence of Noah Webster House. Courtesy picture

Tickets are limited for this exclusive event.

The event is co-hosted by the Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society and Harvest Wine & Spirits. “This event is like a perfect storm of beer and history colliding,” said Ian Halpern, General Manager, Harvest Wine & Spirits. Real ale is a traditional cask-conditioned beer popular in the days of founding father and lexicographer Noah Webster.

Exclusively for this event, breweries across the region are creating unique casks of real ale using ingredients said to have been found at the 18th century Webster homestead in West Hartford, CT. Undergoing a second fermentation in the barrel from which it will be served, the starters are always unique and delicious – with complex and satisfying depth. This is beer you won’t find anywhere else.

Many favorite and well-known breweries will be participating in Real Ale Fest 2022. For Hog River Brewing Company, Real Ale Fest is a tradition. They have competed every year since the first event in 2015 and are the reigning cask champion. Hog River won the Cask Champion title and cup in 2021 with their Lemon Lavender Kölsch. Returning to compete this year are: Aspetuck Brew Lab, Alvarium Beer Co., Brewery Legitimus, Counter Weight Brewing Co., Firefly Hollow Brewing, Hog River Brewing Co., Kent Falls Brewing Co., New England Brewing Co., New Park Brewing, OEC Brewing, WeHa Brewing & Roasting Co. and Willimantic Brewing Co.

New entrants are: Broken Symmetry, East Hartford Brewing, East Rock Brewing Co., Malowe Artisanal Ales, New England Cider Co., Nod Hill Brewery, Oxbow Brewing Co. and Twelve Percent Beer Project.

A panel of judges will determine which brewery will be named Cask Champion and attendees will vote for the Taster’s Choice winner. Votes will be counted by Clark Hirth’s official CPA accounting team using their weighting system designed specifically for the event.

Hartford’s Dwayne Keith & Friends perform live at the festival. Keith is known for his well-orchestrated fills, groove and dexterity, and currently performs with The Dwayne Keith Project, Nikita, New Mosaic and other bands.

Food is available for purchase from CT Provisions. CT Provisions will curate a custom menu for the event, drawing inspiration from the same colonial pantry and garden list used by brewers. CT Provisions is run by chefs Sean Farrell and Power Minor who are longtime friends and first met as chefs at the Firebox Restaurant in Hartford, CT.

Please drink responsibly. There will be a drop off point right in front of the museum for Uber, Lyft and designated drivers to use. This site is sponsored by Keating Agency Insurance.

This event is made possible with the support of co-organizer Harvest Wine & Spirits and sponsors Keating Agency Insurance, Clark Hirth CPAs and Eric Bergenn, Financial Planner – New England Financial Group.

Visit the ticketing site for the most up-to-date information on participating breweries, music and food.

This unique and exclusive event takes place on the grounds of the historic Noah Webster House, 227 S. Main St., West Hartford, CT. There will be two sessions, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. and from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Each session includes unlimited samples served in a souvenir tasting glass. Advance tickets are available for $50 at After September 2, tickets are $60. Designated drivers are welcome for $20 per person. Guests must be at least 21 years old and present proper identification. All proceeds will go to the non-profit museum.

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