The venue: This year the festival will be held in Výstaviště PVA Letňany. To me, this is a change for the worse. I really liked last year's venue. It was really lovely to sit there, right next to Stromovka, surrounded by trees and a lot of green, it gave the festival a pretty nice atmosphere, besides, it was much closer to the centre. Though Letňany is right next to the namesake metro station, the area is really ugly, looks a bit like no man's land. But well, the organisers must have had their reasons.
The rest of the changes, fortunately, are for the better:
Official support: This year's edition has recieved the official sponsoring of Prague's Mayor. That should mean that the festival will be listed prominently among the many cultural activities that take place in the Czech capital. It would be nice if they also got support from Czech Tourism.
Craft beers: At least that is the intention. I heard from a good source that the organisers are planning to offer craft beers. The idea is that each day one or two different micros will offer some of their products. It is yet to be seen which have the will or capacity to take the offer. If they do, I hope at least one of them brews a special beer for the festival, and that they will not bring only their Světlý Ležák, but something a bit more challenging.
Food: The offer will be wider, aiming to inlcude something else than pub grub. We will see what and for how much, last year food was a bit pricey.
Entrance: This is the best news! What received the most criticism by far las year were the 120CZK of the entrance fee. The organisers learnt from their mistake (good for them) and they've decided that this year entrance will be free, which might make more people to attend the festival (provided they are willing to go all the way to Letňany.
The rest will stay pretty much the same. Beers and food will still be paid with Tolars, something that received its fair shair of critisism, but that I thought was pretty clever; it made service quicker (waiters didn't have to bother with counting cash and giving change with each order).
According to the web page it seems that the brewery and beer lineup will stay the same. I don't know how updated the information is. Let me remind you that last year new beers were brought after the opening day (including two from Herold).
The beer list brings up a few questions: Does it really have to include Braník, Staropramen and Gambrinus vyčepní, among other gems? How many people want to pay 40CZK for them? Will there any of the beers from Heineken.CZ group (Starobrno, Krušovice, Louny, Zlatopramen, Březňák) this year? Will the regional breweries be as successful as last year? (I trully hope so) And finally, will Bernard and Primátor be there this year? It would be so lovely to enjoy Bernard Kvasnicové or any of the top fermented brews from Náchod (Weizenbier, EPA and Stout)! If the organisers read this blog (or anyone there can tell them about it), I beg you please consider including these beers, I'm sure they will be a big hit.
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