If you're into craft beer, you don't need me to explain why this event will be mobbed. If you're not familiar with Hill Farmstead, this is your chance to find out why beer geeks speak so reverently about a small farmhouse brewery in Vermont, which has been RateBeer's #1 brewery in the world three years running. Beer director Greg Engert has spread the beer over two days, with Hill Farmstead founder Shawn Hill at both events. Saturday at ChurchKey is focused on Hill Farmstead's IPAs and pale ales, such as Harlan, Abner and Double Citra, plus a few darker offerings, including the divine Shirley Mae nitro porter. You're going to want to be in line at least an hour in advance if you want to have one of the 14 beers before they run out. Noon. 1337 14th St. NW.
Sunday, at the Sovereign, is dedicated to a dozen “Belgian-inspired” Hill Farmstead beers, including Clara, a grisette; the 2016 and 2017 vintages of Anna, a farmhouse ale made with wildflower honey; and Brother Soigne, a lime, hibiscus and blood orange farmhouse ale made brewed with Luc “Bim” Lafontaine, former of Dieu de Ciel. 11 a.m. 1206 Wisconsin Ave. NW.
The North Bethesda beer garden kicks off its spring patio season with a little slice of Oktoberfest: 12 German and German-style craft beers from breweries in the old country (Mahrs Brau, Braubäcker, Mönchshof) and closer to home (RAR, Union, Manor Hill). The kitchen has a special menu of bratwurst and other meats, and an oompah band provides the entertainment. Beers will be offered in regular and 20-ounce pours; the latter includes a free souvenir mug. Noon to 6 p.m. 11820 Trade St., North Bethesda.
Marketers have decided that every style of beer needs its own official "[Fill-in-the-Blank] Day” throughout the year. It can get a little tedious, but if someone's offering the chance to drink Allagash and Right Proper saisons, it sounds like a holiday to me. The fourth annual Saison Day, originated by Allagash, takes over Right Proper's Brookland production facility for a saison taste-off with beers made by D.C. home-brewers, saison food pairings and, of course, farmhouse-style beers made by Allagash and Right Proper. 1 to 5 p.m. 920 Girard St. NE.
If there's one thing that the craft beer revolution has opened people's eyes to, it's the importance of fresh beer. Pizzeria Paradiso is curating a special day of ultra-fresh beer from 11 D.C., Maryland and Virginia breweries, including Ocelot, Manor Hill and 3 Stars. RAR and Union are sending special cask-conditioned ales. The beers go on tap at 11:30 a.m.; the party lasts all day (or until they run out). 2003 P St. NW.
The Red Shedman brewery and hop fields are set on 200 acres of farmland in Mount Airy, alongside the Linganore Winery. At their annual Bluegrass, Brew and Barbecue festival, you can listen to five bluegrass bands while sampling beer from 25 breweries, including Waredaca, Burley Oak and Bell's, and eating food purchased from vendors. General admission ($27.50 in advance) includes 16 sample tokens; VIP admission ($37.50) allows entry at 11 a.m. and 20 samples. Noon to 6 p.m. 13601 Glissans Mill Rd., Mount Airy.
Breweries and bands take over Old Town's Carlyle District for a full weekend of entertainment. Virginia craft beers, including Pale Fire, Chaos Mountain, Blue Mountain and O'Connor, dominate the offerings, but there are also the likes of Goose Island and Golden Road. Saturday's music has a rootsy vibe, with Dave Chappell and the Lone Stardusters, the Crawdaddies and Carly Harvey, while Sunday's bands rock harder with Down Wilson, Justin Trawick and the Common Good and Moonshine Society. Local restaurants provide the food. Admission is free, but sampling beers costs $25 per day. Noon to 6 p.m. 300 John Carlyle St., Alexandria.
Devils Backbone's decision to sell the brewery to Anheuser-Busch did not go over well in the Virginia craft beer world. Still, breweries of all sizes continue to work together. Devils Backbone's new Virginia Brewers Pack includes collaborations with five brewers from across the Old Dominion, including a dry Irish stout made with Mad Fox Brewing Company, an IPA with “exotic hops” brewed with Ocelot and a sour IPA made with Parkway. Mad Fox is hosting two official release parties for the six-bottle sampler, at the Falls Church brewery on April 26 and its Glover Park taproom on April 28. All beers will be available on draft at both locations. 4 p.m. at both locations. 444 W. Broad St., Falls Church and 2218 Wisconsin Ave. NW.