In case you're not familiar with NYC Beer Week (which starts tonight), it's amazing. From now through March 2nd, there's going to be approximately infinity awesome, beer-centric parties, tastings, tap takeovers, drinking sessions, festivals, and all other sorts of events all over the city. Literally, if you go to a bar over the next week and a half, you'll probably end up at some sort of event by accident. If you care to take a more hands-on approach to your Beer Week bar-going, though, we've created a little Beer Week matrix to help you find an event that fits your beer-drinking proclivities.
Here's how it works: we've selected 21 events and mapped them out on two different axis-es that measure beer geek-ery and food- vs. beer-forwardness. Take a look at the blown-up version here, and then get more deets on the ones in your favorite quadrants, in the alphabetical listings below. It's on.
"Back To The Future" with Peekskill, Capt. Lawrence & Shmaltz: They'll be popping open beers from the past at 4th Ave Pub at 4pm on March 1st, including Ithaca Brute from 2011 and the first-ever batch of Funky Jewbelation.
Bacon Nation Beer Dinner: Head to Jimmy's No. 43 on February 24th, where $55 will get you a five-course beer dinner with Peter Kaminsky and Wandering Star Brewery.
Barcade Bridge & Tunnel Night: Make the trek to the Jersey City location for a taste of several beers that you can't get in NYC, including Terrapin Cinnamon Roll'd Wake'n'Bake, NJ Beer Co Wee Heavy, and Lancaster Gold Star Pilsner.
Brewery Tours: Join Urban Oyster for New York's first bus tour visiting only craft breweries -- you'll hit up four breweries, starting at the new Paulaner Brauhaus on Bowery.
Brooklyn Brewery Mash Bash with Dinner Lab: Get over to Brooklyn Brewery on February 22nd at 7:30pm, for a multi-course "feast" in their tasting room by Chef Andrew Gerson and the Dinner Lab, with beers paired throughout from Brooklyn's deep stable of brews.
Brooklyn Brewery Tasting at Top Hops: Sample new release Wild Streak and Hammarby Syndrome, as well as some of their classics, from 6-8pm on February 26th.
Caskalot: Join in a celebration of NY cask-conditioned ales at 508 Gastrobrewery on February 23rd.
Chocolate Dinner at 508 Gastrobrewery: In collaboration with the guy behind The Chocolate Life, 508 is doing a pairing dinner that's centered around the sweet stuff on Feb 27th. Get your spot here.
Closing Brunch: Houston Hall is playing host to the ending of this magical week, with select brews from Brewer's Guild members and brunch eats on March 2nd from noon-3pm.
The Craft of Writing About Craft Beer: On February 26th, the Rare Book Room at Strand will be home to a panel of top-notch beer writers (Joshua Bernstein, John Holland Giancarlo & Sarah Annese), as well as tastings from Coney Island Brewing.
Cuzday: On February 25th, there'll be a series of home-brew collaborative beers on tap at 508 Gastrobrewery, and their chief brewer (Chris Cuzme) will be wailing on the sax.
Ghost Bottle Night at Brooklyn Brewery: Garrett Oliver and the rest of the crew there are going to be getting into some of their unreleased favorites for two hours, from 7-9pm on February 26th.
Industry Ladies Happy Hour: Go hang out with all the women of the beer industry at Brooklyn Tap House from 4-7pm on February 25th.
Kelso Beer Dinner at Applewood: They're doing a five-course tasting menu, where each dish is paired with a beer by Kelly Taylor of Kelso Beer Co., on February 25th at 7pm.
Luke's Lobster Beer Dinner: This beer dinner for two includes a lobster roll, crab roll, shrimp roll, and two small soups, along with a tasting of three of Maine's craftiest brews; available at all locations during all open-hours throughout Beer Week.
New York Brewer's Convention: Brewer's from all over this great state are gathering to drink a ton of beer at this second annual event at New York Beer Co. on February 28th.
NYC Brewer's Choice: Always a central event during Beer Week, on Feb 26th from 6-9pm at the Wythe Hotel, the brewer's bring out the big guns, with this year's lineup featuring all breweries from NY and a keynote talk from Jeff O'Neill of Peekskill Brewery.
Opening Night Bash: On the very first night (February 21st), Beer Week's taking over Grand Central Terminal for the first time. You're gonna want to be there.
Spring Seasonal Beer Fest: The NYC Craft Beer Fest is going down in the Lexington Armory on February 28th and March 1st, and it's doing a little wishful thinking with a focus on Spring seasonals.
Tuesday Tasting with Culinary Muse: Jimmy's No. 43 has Annette Tomei working up a special, one-seating beer-pairing dinner at 6:45pm.(Ed Note: This has actually changed to a "cellar/last bottles" event with Jimmy himself pulling favorites form the cellar ot pair with the food. Tickets here.)
Queens Tap Takeover at Station House: Queens is quickly becoming a hot-bed of brewing activity, and on February 25th, Forest Hills' Station House is hosting a bunch of the new heavy-hitters to show off their brews.
Andrew Zimmer is Thrillist's NYC Editor. He wishes every week were Beer Week, because then he would totally have an excuse. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.