As it gets colder, we can count on a unique way to warm up every Fall season in Toronto. Now heading into it’s 8th year, Cask Days by barVolo is a celebration of the best and most unique flavours and breweries our great country has to offer. Expanding this year to Evergreen Brickworks, and including food and art in the festival, this year promises to be the best version yet.
We had a chance to sit down with Tomas Morana, one of Cask Days co-founders, to get a better idea of what it’s all about and how it all began.
How did the idea to host a Cask event in Toronto come to be?
Cask Days started in 2005 at Bar Volo – at the time a much simpler concept, but still the first of its kind in the country. We were talking to a few of our regulars about cask beer and then went to England (Great British Beer Festival) to see what it was all about. Nothing like this was happening over here so we decided to throw a mini festival. Cask ale is essentially beer in its realest form. Unfiltered, naturally carbonated, unpasteurized and (at the festival) served gravity style right out of the barrel. Cask beer undergoes a secondary fermentation once you tap it and only has a few days to be consumed before to spoils. We call these days… “Cask Days”.
There are so many great artists from Toronto. Do you make it a point to include local talent in the festival?
I’ve always wanted to introduce an art gallery aspect to a beer festival, but also bring all of our favourite worlds together in one room. Originally, my plan was to feature artists behind the beer labels then just evolved into live painting and implementing a temporary gallery space while the festival was going on. Really stoked to have Elicser and Jimmy Chiale doing live painting. You can check out the full list here: caskdays.com/art
The food is a great new addition to the festival this year. What was it like working with Guy Rawlings?
Guy Rawlings (& Kim) are awesome to work with. Good people that definitely understand the direction we are taking the festival in. Also lovers of hip hop so naturally working with them is fun. E-mail conversations about planning turned into sending classic hip hop tracks back and forth. This year you will have the best food this festival has ever scene. Really nice mix of local Toronto chefs doing traditional festival food and also more of a unconventional / contemporary take on matching food with beer. You need the good eats with the good beer.
Note: Grand Electric will be making an appearance.
How did that partnership with The Remix Project come about?
Since 2005 we have selected a charity to work with and try to help raise money for. Ive been following the remix project since it started and this year it made sense to work with them with the new direction of the festival. Remix and Cask Days are putting together a silent auction/raffle for all the artwork in the festival to help raise money. We’re also hoping to feature some of the Remix participants artwork as well.
Any advice to those wanting to come out this weekend (Oct. 27-28th)?
Dress warm. Bring out the halloween costumes and prepare your list of beers you want to try. Its massive!
Get your tickets HERE.
For more info: caskdays.com
Written by Graham Stewart.
Previously: Cask Days Festival