Three breweries in the state have taken home awards in what is billed as the largest commercial beer competition in the world. This weekend's Great American Beer Festival in Colorado awarded nearly 270 medals from more than 5,500 entries. The Indiana operations that finished among the top in their categories were Sun King Brewing Co. and Bier Brewery, both based in Indianapolis, as well as Evansville's Carsons Brewery.

October 6, 2014

News Release

BOULDER, Col. (October 4, 2014) – The 2014 Great American Beer Festival (GABF) competition awarded 268 medals to some of the best commercial breweries in the United States, plus three GABF Pro-Am medals. Presented by the Brewers Association, GABF is the largest commercial beer competition in the world and a symbol of brewing excellence. In its 28th year, the 2014 competition surpassed all previous participation records.

To accommodate growth, this year’s GABF competition saw its biggest panel of judges ever, with 222 beer experts from 10 countries evaluating 5,507 commercial entries, plus 89 Pro-Am entries, with assistance from some 150 competition volunteers. Award-winning brewers received prestigious gold, silver and bronze medals in 90 beer categories covering 145 different beer styles (encompassing subcategories), establishing the best examples of each style in the U.S. Winners were chosen from 5,507 competition entries (16 percent more than in 2013) from 1,309 breweries, hailing from 50 states plus Washington, D.C.

2014 Brewery and Brewer of the Year Awards Very Small Brewing Company and Very Small Brewing Company Brewer of the Year Sponsored by Brewers Supply Group (BSG)

Draught Works

Draught Works Brew Team

Small Brewing Company and Small Brewing Company Brewer of the Year Sponsored by O-I

Marble Brewery

Team Marble

Mid-Size Brewing Company and Mid-Size Brewing Company Brewer of the Year Sponsored by Microstar Keg Management

Devils Backbone Brewing Co.—Outpost

DB Brewery Team

Large Brewing Company and Large Brewing Company Brewer of the Year Sponsored by Beer Institute

AC Golden

AC Golden Brewing Team

Small Brewpub and Small Brewpub Brewer of the Year Sponsored by Briess Malt & Ingredients Co.

Bastone Brewery

Rockne Van Meter

Mid-Size Brewpub of the Year Sponsored by Brewers Supply Group (BSG)

Brasserie Saint James

Josh Watterson & Matt Watterson

Large Brewpub and Large Brewpub Brewer of the Year Sponsored by Country Malt Group

Beachwood BBQ & Brewing

Julian Shrago & Ian McCall

Overall Competition Highlights

Reflecting craft brewing’s surging popularity and sustained excellence nationwide, overall competition highlights include:

Fifty-two first-time entering breweries won awards.

Four breweries tied for most medals won, with three medals each:

10 Barrel Brewing Co.

Barley Brown’s Brew Pub

Devils Backbone Brewing Co.–Outpost

Left Hand Brewing Co.

Top three states by ratio of medals to entries by state:

New Jersey: 19% with 16 entries and three medals

Alaska: 13% with 16 entries and two medals – tied with – District of Columbia: 13% with 8 entries and one medal

New Mexico: 10% with 84 entries and eight medals

Style Categories

Since 2002, the most-entered category has been American-Style India Pale Ale (IPA), which saw 279 entries in 2014. The top five entered categories were:

American-Style India Pale Ale (279 entries)

Herb and Spice Beer (150 entries)

American-Style Pale Ale (145 entries)

American-Style Amber/Red Ale (140 entries)

Imperial India Pale Ale (135 entries)

The winners in the most-entered (that is, the most competitive) categories were:

1. American-Style India Pale Ale (279 entries)

Gold: Breakside Brewery, Breakside IPA

Silver: Half Acre Beer Co., Heyoka

Bronze: Columbus Brewing Co., Bodhi

2. Herb and Spice Beer (150 entries)

Gold: Blind Tiger Brewery & Restaurant, Basil Beer

Silver: 5 Stones Artisan Brewery, Aloha Pi?a

Bronze: Coastal Empire Beer Co., Dawn Patrol Breakfast Stout

3. American-Style Pale Ale (145 entries)

Gold: Ballast Point Brewing & Spirits– Sripps Ranch, Grunion

Silver: Peekskill Brewery, NYPA

Bronze: Tampa Bay Brewing Co., Reef Donkey APA

4. American-Style Amber/Red Ale (140 entries)

Gold: Canteen Brew House, Dougie Style Amber Ale

Silver: Capitol City Brewing Co., Amber Waves Ale

Bronze: Bootlegger’s Brewery, Rocco Red Ale

5. Imperial India Pale Ale (135 entries)

Gold: Columbus Brewing Co., Creeper

Silver: Port Brewing Co., Hop 15

Bronze: Russian River Brewing Co., Pliny the Elder

The 2014 GABF competition featured three new categories: Belgian-Style Fruit Beer, with 41 entries; Historical Beer, with 12 entries; and Kuyt Beer, which had no entries. There were two categories in which one of the three possible medals was not awarded:

English-Style Brown Ale (67 entries): no silver medal

Golden or Blonde Ale (90 entries): no gold medal

2014 Great American Beer Festival Pro-Am Competition Sponsored by Briess Malt & Ingredients Co., Country Malt Group, Hopunion and White Labs

Gold, silver and bronze medals were also awarded in the GABF Pro-Am competition, which pairs amateur brewers with professional brewers, who scale up the award-winning homebrew recipes. The medal winners, including the winning professional brewers and American Homebrewers Association (AHA) member homebrewers are: Gold: Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Scottish 80 Shilling, Bear Republic Brewing Co. Brewmaster: Team Bear Republic / Richard Norgrove, and AHA Member Michael Kelly Silver: Spencer Pale Ale, Kokopelli Beer Co. Brewmaster: Kokopelli Brew Crew, and AHA Member Daniel Christensen Bronze: I Wanna Rauch!, Springfield Brewing Co. Brewmaster: Ashton Lewis & Bruce Johnson, and AHA member Keith Wallis

Summary: 2014 Great American Beer Festival Statistics

710 breweries in the festival hall

More than 3,500 beers served at the festival

49,000 attendees

More than 3,200 volunteers

1,309 breweries in the competition from 50 states plus Washington, D.C.

5,507 beers judged (not including 89 Pro-Am competition entries), a 16 percent increase over 2013

90 style categories judged, plus the Pro-Am competition

222 judges from 10 countries

Average number of competition beers entered in each category: 61.2 (excludes Pro-Am beers)

Category with highest number of entries: American-Style India Pale Ale: 279

About the Brewers Association

The Brewers Association is the not-for-profit trade association dedicated to small and independent American brewers, their beers and the community of brewing enthusiasts. The Brewers Association (BA) represents more than 75 percent of the brewing industry, and its members make more than 99 percent of the beer brewed in the U.S. The BA organizes events including the World Beer Cup, Great American Beer Festival, Craft Brewers Conference & BrewExpo America, SAVOR: An American Craft Beer & Food Experience and American Craft Beer Week. The BA publishes The New Brewer magazine and its Brewers Publications division is the largest publisher of contemporary and relevant brewing literature for today's craft brewers and homebrewers. Beer lovers are invited to learn more about the dynamic world of craft beer at and about homebrewing via the BA's American Homebrewers Association. Follow us on Twitter. The Brewers Association is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, or marital/familial status. The BA complies with provisions of Executive Order 11246 and the rules, regulations, and relevant orders of the Secretary of Labor.


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