Foodies can eat, drink, eat some more during the Free State Festival

The Free State Festival's Lawrence Mixology event June 23 at John Brown's Underground will feature a panel of local cocktail experts.

The Free State Festival's Lawrence Mixology event June 23 at John Brown's Underground will feature a panel of local cocktail experts.

Attendees of next week's Free State Festival should have their fill of music, art, film and ideas. And the festival's making sure all the foodies out there get their fill of food and drinks as well, with three dining-related events on this year's roster. Here's a breakdown:

Lawrence Mixology

Cocktail-crazy? Check out this rundown of the latest bartending trends from a panel of local experts from 6 to 7:15 p.m. June 23 at John Brown's Underground, 7 E. Seventh St.

"Mezcal aficionado" Adam Clary will guide participants on Oaxacan drinking culture and tradition, while 715's Katrina Weiss will discuss "history's greatest punches" and share how to create cocktails fit for hosting a large group.

Rounding out the panel is Kate Brubacher of John Brown's Underground. The festival's Lawrence Mixology description mentions her enthusiasm for "clean drinking" (think cocktails with herbs, plants, essential oils and fresh produce — much of which Brubacher grows in her own backyard), so perhaps we'll see a bit of greenery when it comes to her portion of the event.

For obvious reasons, this event is for those 21 and up. Tickets cost $25 and include "cutting-edge cocktails and nibbles."

Lawrence Eats!

Lawrence Eats!, a discussion of "food trends, food favorites and food fanaticism," is slated for 6 to 7:15 p.m. June 24 at the Lawrence Arts Center, 940 New Hampshire St.

This free event invites foodies to meet some of Lawrence's greatest culinary minds, including Mel Roeder of Cafe Beautiful, Matt Hyde of 715, Jesse Bonebrake of Mariscos and Rick Martin of Limestone Pizza, and learn what they're cooking up in their kitchens.

Stella Artois Presents the Free State Festival Beer Dinner

For the hardcore foodies (or those with the deeper pockets), there's the first annual Free State Festival Beer Dinner on June 26 at Maceli's Banquet Hall and Catering, 1031 New Hampshire St. Tickets to the dinner cost $100 and include a five-course meal of beer-based recipes from local chefs and food-beer pairings by Anheuser-Busch brewmaster George Reisch.

Participating chefs include Mark Gregory of Maceli's, Nick Wysong of Ingredient/Five Bar and Tables, T.K. Peterson of Merchants Pub and Plate, Dave Nigro of Maceli's and Patrick Ryan of Port Fonda, who will respectively handle the bread, soup, salad, entree and dessert courses.

Attendees will get the chance to learn about beer-meal pairings and collect new recipes to try at home, and they'll also have a chance to win door prizes.

"Beertails" commence at 5:30 p.m., while dinner will take place between 6 and 8 p.m. Visit the festival's website for a full menu.

Tickets for Lawrence Mixology and the Free State Festival Beer Dinner can be purchased online at


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