DENVER — The themes of this years’ Great American Beer Fest (GABF) was twofold: Celebration, and Reunification.
GABF is not just a place to try all the beer you can hold in three hours. It’s a world-renowned competition, where beers are blind tasted and essentially ranked by quality, on a number of distinct flavor, aroma and textural elements. There are 96 styles of beer, many with multiple subcategories. This year, the festival had a specific section pouring 2015 winners, offering a great chance to try some world class beers.
Breweries will often enter the competition but not host a table in the hall, or, will host a table but will not pour the specialty beers they have entered in the competition. Since entrants pay to host a table, they have substantial discretion on what beers they choose to pour. One might assume that brewers would choose to pour lower cost beers to a crowd of less discriminating palates, but this is not always the case.
Now, on to the winners!
I am proud to report that five North Denver breweries took home medals at the 2016 GABF! 2016 GABF was a blast and was made even sweeter by how well our local companies did in the competition.
Cerebral Brewing took the Gold medal in Brett Beer for its “Dreamy Thing” Brett farmhouse ale, a simple table beer that’s been inoculated with Brettanomyces to create a tangy beer. This beer is a collaboration between two North Denver breweries, Our Mutual Friend and Cerebral.
14er Brewing also took home the Gold for its Rocky Mountain Saison in the Chili beer category. 14er is so hardcore, they don’t even have a brick and mortar location, yet they’re obviously killing it. I’m very excited for them to open and I love the name and concept.
Denver Beer Company Canworks also took Gold for their “Drama Queen,” in the wood and barrel-aged beer category. Way to go guys!
Prost took home a Silver medal for their Weisbier, in the South German Hefeweizen style. Prost boasts some rock solid German beers and a view of the city that can’t be beat!
Fiction Beer Company also won a Silver medal for a German style lager, with their Alternate Present Schwarzbier. Regarding style, a Schwarzbier is simply a deep black lager.
Again, a million congrats to all the winners!
Now on to theme two, Reunification.
A great big deal that came out of the festival is the proposed reunification of the Colorado Brewers Guild. Back in June, the group fractured due to some major M&A action in the Colorado Beer Scene (a little company called AB InBev purchased Breckenridge Brewing and many were upset over the impact of voting rights and control in the guild due to AB InBev’s status as a multinational conglomerate).
Craft Beer Colorado spun off to form its own group. As a result of talks around GABF the Guild and Craft Beer Colorado have proposed a merger and may be on the verge of reuniting. As a consumer, I am cautiously supportive — the bifurcation only served to create confusion. I am also a realist. It’s no surprise that consolidation happens when a field is as profitable and growth oriented as the craft beer scene. But what will Anheuser-Busch InBev buy next?
Bacon and Beer Returns!
Saturday, November 5, 2016, 2:00pm – 5:30pm
Glitter Dome | 3600 Wynkoop Street, Denver
Two Parts hosts the fifth iteration of an outstanding festival pairing local brews with tasty bacon-inspired dishes. Not to be confused with the Bacon and Beer Classic, Two Part’s festival is a local Denver undertaking. Proceeds from the fest will benefit Project Angel Heart and Metro Caring, so you can fuel your love of pork and other cardiovascular challenges while giving back. You can expect beers from Alpine Dog Brewing Company, Call to Arms Brewing Co. Cerebral Brewing and Goldspot Brewing Company, as well as others from the surrounding metro area.
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