I should perhaps start this off with a hearty piratical “Arrrrrr!” or some other rum-soaked cliche. But I won’t.
Anyway, if you like a drop of rum or a gin and tonic of an evening, then the aptly-named Vienna Rumfestival and Ginmarkt Wien might be your thing.
- 2-day rum and gin festivals held at Ottakring Brewery
- Tastings, workshops, food & music
- Ticketed separately, but combi-tickets available
- 2019 dates not yet available (the 2018 event was held Sept 28-29)
What are the festivals all about?
Drinking rum and gin. A celebration of rum and gin. The two festivals share a date and location, both taking place on the premises of Vienna’s main brewer (Ottakring).
The Vienna Rumfestival will be in its fourth year, offering visitors the chance to discover different types of rum from dozens of brands. It’s the brainchild of rum aficionados, who will no doubt grimace at my earlier pirate comment. After all, rum has escaped its historical naval milieu to become a drink of the world, albeit resonant with Caribbean flair and history.
The Ginmarkt Wien festival is a year younger and goes better with tonic and a slice of lemon.
I’ll add 2019 details as they become available (the organisers have stated they’re already planning the 2019 event), but here are the highlights from 2018:
The rum festival
The masterclasses, tastings and workshops cost extra and are held in German anyway. But your basic entry ticket includes drink vouchers and a festival glass.
Obviously, there’s the chance to sample and/or buy the drink that led Lord Byron to write:
“There’s nought, no doubt, so much the spirit calms
As rum and true religion: thus it was”
There are also food trucks, entertainment in the form of live Cuban music (from 6 pm), and even a cigar lounge.
A strong cocktail theme also runs through the rum festival. For example, a cocktail challenge on the Friday sees nine expert barkeepers attempt to create a totally-new rum-based cocktail in just 30 minutes in an event sponsored by Angostura.
The gin festival
As well as plenty of gin to sample from some 28 brands, there’s also food and music, the latter courtesy of various DJs.
Dates and tickets
2019 dates are not yet available. In 2018, the festivals ran Friday, September 28 to Saturday, September 29. The rum festival began at 1 pm, the gin festival from 4 pm.
Tickets were available online (see below for links), but sold out fast. Note that you needed combi-tickets if you wanted to visit both festivals. There may be a few tickets available on each day at the events themselves, as well.
How to get to the festivals
The two festivals run concurrently at the same location: Ottakring Brauerei (Ottakring brewery). The brewery site is picking up a reputation as an event location: it also hosts a long summer beer festival, for example.
Tram: Take line 2, 9 or 44 to the “Johann-Nepomuk-Berger-Platz” stop, which is opposite the brewery. Or the 46 line to “Feßtgasse”.