The successful Brew! Coimbra Craft Beer Festival

Culture and gastronomy came together in Coimbra Region to celebrate a new and alternative brewing festival: the Brew! Coimbra Craft Beer Festival. Part of Coimbra Region, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2021 brand activation strategy, the event took place on 13-15 September 2019 at the Exploratory Science Centre of Coimbra, in the Mondego River Green Park.

Featuring 15 brewers who presented around 100 craft beers, with over 50 different types, this unique event, was not only an opportunity to showcase local products and producers from all over the region, but also an occasion to highlight the principles and values underlying Coimbra Region’s programme as European Region of Gastronomy, with a special focus on social, cultural, economic and environmental sustainability.

Besides supporting local micro brewers in the region and placing a spotlight on craft beer as one of the strategic gastronomic products of Coimbra Region, the initiative gathered a variety of local stakeholders from different sectors and areas of knowledge.

The programme included beer pairing activities such as Perfect Harmonisations – Gastronomy of Coimbra Region and Perfect Harmonisations – Conventual Confectionery of Coimbra Region, provided by the Coimbra Hotel and Tourism School. Furthermore, it supported knowledge sharing about this product through the presentation Beer! What is? How is it done? by brew master Márcio Ferreira and Rui Manadas, from the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Coimbra.

Special attention was also devoted to health with the round table on Health and Beer – Benefits of beer as a functional food including presentations by Natália Costa, Nutritionist and Consultant of Portugal Brewers, and Nuno Empadinhas from the Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology of University of Coimbra.

A single-use plastics free event, the festival enhanced its sustainability by providing spaces for waste recycling and biodegradable tokens. Furthermore, it also included opportunities to showcase local culture, such as the Fado of Coimbra.

Thanks to its philosophy and positioning, the festival attracted a large and diversified audience including younger and elder people, beer lovers, families and curious, exceeding initial expectations of participation.

About the European Region of Gastronomy       

Candidate and awarded Regions of Gastronomy from Europe, guided by IGCAT, are working together to raise awareness about the importance of their cultural and food uniqueness; stimulate creativity and gastronomic innovation; educate for better nutrition; improve sustainable tourism standards; highlight distinctive food cultures; and strengthen community well-being.


IGCAT aims to empower local communities by raising awareness of the importance to safeguard and promote distinct food, culture, arts and sustainable tourism assets. This is essential to balance against globalised food trends that are impacting on our planet, health and local economies.

IGCAT is a non-profit institute established in 2012, working with regional stakeholder consortiums in the fields of gastronomy, culture, arts and tourism. It counts on the expertise of a worldwide network of experts and works in partnership with specialised intergovernmental organisations.

IGCAT provides the Region of Gastronomy Award and is the official secretariat for the European Region of Gastronomy Platform. Furthermore, the Institute has developed the European Young Chef Award the Local Food Gift Challenge, the Top Visitor Experience and the Food Film Menu.