Four Score and Seven Beers Ago

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Today, of course, is the 80th anniversary of the repeal of prohibition, a.k.a. Repeal Day. Below is the original resolution from Congress, signed the following day.

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You may recall that earlier this year was also the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address. So I was goofing around this morning and modified Lincoln’s famous speech as a toast to the end of prohibition, which I titled “Four Score and Seven Beers Ago.” A score, to save you from checking Dictionary.com is 20 years, which is how long ago the 21st Amendment was ratified. Enjoy.

Four score and seven beers ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, the end of prohibition, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are entitled to a beer.

Now we are engaged in a great social war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met in a great brewery of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of this kettle, as a final resting place for the malt who here gave its life that that beer might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should toast this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate — we can not consecrate — we can not hallow — this beer. The brave malt, hops and yeast, who fermented here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add more hops or filter it. The world will little note, nor long remember what beer we drank here, but it can never forget what they brewed here. It is for us the drinkers, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished beer which they who brewed here have thus far made with noble hops. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task of drinking more beer — that from these honored beers we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of hops — that we here highly resolve that these bottles shall not have been emptied in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom to drink beer — and that this beer of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Don’t read too much into it, again I was just goofing around with the words. I suppose it could be used as a toast if you were at a brewery, but otherwise, it’s just a little spoof, nothing more.

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So join me in bridging time and drinking a toast to prohibition’s end, 80 years later, and, of course, stay wet, my friends. Happy Repeal Day.

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Self-Fulfilling Prophecy Propaganda

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Here’s another great example of the circle jerk nature of prohibitionist groups. This is, I’m finding, the standard operating procedure for most, if not all, of them. They decide what they’re opposed to, in this case alcohol, and then they commission — that is pay for — research that they claim proves their point. Tobacco companies are the classic example, insofar as they funded lots of studies showing how safe smoking was despite independent research revealing just the opposite. How the “study” is framed is one of the many troubling aspects of how they do this. Assumptions are made that all alcohol is bad and that people who consume it will abuse it and be a burden on society, causing innumerable harms to themselves and others. That’s a persistent theme that permeates much of the so-called scientific literature, there’s hardly a whiff of impartiality if you look deeply enough into it.

A pointed example I recall, outside the alcohol world, is the Meese Commission Report which was directed by then-President Ronald Reagan to find a link between pornography and criminal or anti-social behavior. The important difference between this, and the earlier commission by Johnson/Nixon which resulted in the 1970 Commission on Obscenity and Pornography, is that from an impartial starting point that report found no such link. In fact, the 1970 commission “recommended against any restrictions for adults” and overall “the report found that obscenity and pornography were not important social problems, that there was no evidence that exposure to such material was harmful to individuals, and that current legal and policy initiatives were more likely to create problems than solve them.” Regardless of your feelings about pornography, what’s significant is that Reagan’s mandate to Meese was not to see if there was causation between pornography and violence, but was instead he was tasked with finding one. That was the goal of the report, to find a link to please Reagan’s base on the religious right who weren’t happy with the results of the 1970 report. And that’s how I feel about GAPA and the countless quasi-scientific prohibitionist organizations and their “studies.” They are, by design, looking for trouble, and so naturally they find it everywhere they look.

So once they’ve manufactured and/or exaggerated the problem, the next step is to get the research published in quasi-scientific journals, in some cases one owned or funded by the same organizations. Then they send out press releases claiming their position has been scientifically proven. They usually neglect to mention that they themselves created the “science” they’re touting because it’s more effective if it appears to be objective. Unfortunately, it rarely is, but such is the state of journalism today that press releases are more often reprinted verbatim without any fact-checking or even questioning the content. It’s apparently enough if it simply has a credible-sounding “scientific” journal name attached to it. Once you’ve got enough of these “studies” you can then hold a conference of like-minded individuals where you can present your findings.

So in October of this year, the “Global Alcohol Policy Conference” was held in South Korea. It was hosted by a group I wasn’t familiar with; the Global Alcohol Policy Alliance (GAPA), but which appears to be more of a loose organization of national prohibitionist groups that was formed in 2000 to share information and hold annual conferences. Although I don’t know many of the international groups, the people from the U.S. make it clear who’s invited to the party. GAPA board members include George Hacker, who runs the notorious prohibitionist Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI); Thomas F. Babor, the author of Alcohol: No Ordinary Commodity: Research and Public Policy (an anti-alcohol handbook) and David Jernigan, who’s the Director of the also notoriously anti-alcohol Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth (CAMY), funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Behavior and Society at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Jerigan was also the author of this travesty: Bud Blamed In Absurd E.R. Visit Study.

Here’s where the circle gets tighter and more insular. There are sixteen board members for GAPA. At the recent Global Alcohol Policy Conference, there were eight speakers on the program. Of those eight, six are also board members of GAPA. Similarly, GAPA is divided into regions. The North American region includes four member organizations: CSPI (Centre for Science in the Public Interest), The Marin Institute (now known as Alcohol Justice), The Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth and the Office of Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse, created by the collaboration of the AMA and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. If you’re a regular reader here you’ll no doubt recognize those groups as being prohibitionist to their core.

Looking over the program for the conference, the topics all revolve around the negative aspects of alcohol, the harms, the addicts, the too-low taxation and regulation. Reading over the titles, it’s hard not to leave with the impression that it’s about how to bring down alcohol completely. I couldn’t find one positive word about drinking, which seems incongruous to my life experience and literally just about every person I know. Surely, they could find some balance to their efforts, but instead it feels punitive, divisive and almost mean-spirited. Some of the speeches given during the conference are available for download, while others — most, really — give you an error message when trying to download: “Applicants sponsored by alcohol manufacturers are not allowed.” How did they know? What don’t they want people in the alcohol industry to know about regarding what they’re saying or doing?

Another glimpse into prohibitionists worldwide comes from GAPA’s internal magazine, The Globe. In the latest issue, Issue 3 2013 they tackle such horrible behavior by alcohol companies as donating water to disaster relief with the overall theme of “Beware of the Alcohol Industry Bearing Gifts.”
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I recall the Marin Institute similarly whining when Anheuser-Busch canned water and sent it to Haiti after the devastating earthquake there, a story I detailed in Let No Good Deed Go Unpunished.

So how was the conference portrayed in the news online? Upstreaming Alcohol Policy reported that an “important theme running through the conference was the role of the global alcohol industry in maintaining and intensifying alcohol-related harm through its tactics and practices.” In other words, we’re all evil and wish your family harm, a persistent theme in all prohibitionist propaganda. Corporations & Health Watch agreed and went even further, reporting that “Dr. Thomas Babor of the University of Connecticut, for example, stressed reasons to doubt the sincerity of the global alcohol industry in its insistence to be part of the solution to alcohol problems.” Yes, we want everybody binge-drinking all the time, every day. There’s nothing better for the alcohol industry than drunk people killing themselves and others, especially when we all have families and want them in harm’s way, too. I’m so sick of this one, where alcohol is criticized for advertising or wanting to sell more products because that, they claim, is “clearly to increase overall consumption — a strategy which is inimical to public health and public safety.” Every alcohol corporation, at least under U.S. law, is like every corporation, beholden to shareholders and must do what they can to increase the share price, in other words increase the business. It’s the law. There’s plenty of corporate behavior I’m not wild about, but at least I understand it. If you want corporations to act differently, change their charters; change the law governing them. But stop making it sound like they’d kill their mothers for a dime. Stop painting them, and all of us in the alcohol industry, as evil. We’re just not.

Their conclusion was that “reducing the global burden of alcohol-related harm will require advocates to effectively counter that industry influence – through reliance on the best science, savvy media advocacy, and robust grassroots organization.” The black humor and irony in that is that the science they’re referring to is anything but the “best” — or evidence-based, as they often phrase it. “Savvy media advocacy” means propaganda which I find usually contains falsehoods and exaggerations, at best. And “robust grassroots organization” means, more often than not, groups funded by large, wealthy prohibitionist groups like the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation or others.

The overall impression I have from watching these groups for over twenty years is that they’re so shamelessly dishonest in their actions and their rhetoric that I can’t really understand how they can claim the high moral ground that’s so inherent in their position. They set up the argument as a David vs. Goliath situation which is laughably wrong. Does “big alcohol” have a lot of money. Sure, but so does the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and most of the others. They’ve been spending their money influencing politicians, spreading their message and trying to persuade others to their way of thinking. Does that sound like the same thing that they accuse alcohol manufacturers of doing? It should, because they’re doing exactly the same thing, and have been since at least 1933, when Prohibition ended. The only real difference is they claim to be doing it for righteous reasons and believe those of us who enjoy drinking a beer or even making or selling it, are the spawn of satan. The problem with that is that we’re not. We’re ordinary people, often with many of the same set of beliefs as the prohibitionists. Contrary to the propaganda, we beerists love our friends and families, have our own faith, are civic-minded and contribute to our community and society at large. We’re regular people who also enjoy drinking beer. Period. It’s only through the lens of prohibitionists that we appear any different. And until that cycle is broken and prohibitionists stop creating self-fulfilling propaganda, we’ll never solve any of the real problems that some individuals have with alcohol.

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All Hopped Up For The Cure 2013

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Yesterday I had lunch at Russian River Brewing, invited by co-owner Natalie Cilurzo as one of a small group of friends who had at least one thing in common: we’d each lost someone to breast cancer. For me, it was my mother when I was 22, and she was only 42. Each year, the Santa Rosa brewpub rolls out its biggest charity effort of the year to raise money for the local Sutter Breast Care Center. The entire month of October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the brewpub is festooned in pink and several great prizes are auctioned throughout the month.

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This is the eighth year they’ve made the All Hopped Up for the Cure charity effort, and last year they raised $76,000 for breast cancer. SO far, they’re on target to beat that total this year. Here’s Natalie Cilurzo writing on the brewery’s blog about this year’s charity drive:

So here we are and it’s already October, my favorite month of the year. Aside from it being beautiful in Sonoma County, we host our annual month-long fundraiser for the Sutter Women’s Health Care Center of Santa Rosa, which brings me great joy! All of the money we raise/donate goes directly to help uninsured or underinsured women AND men in our community receive life saving screening and treatment for Breast Cancer. Recently we have become acquainted with several recipients of our fundraising efforts. Some of their lives have been changed or even saved by the services offered by Sutter. Check out our special Breast Cancer Awareness Month page on our website during October for more info on raffle items, how to get this year’s cute shirt and other interesting things!

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This Saturday will be the final blowout of the month-long charity drive — a costume party — when the auction winners will be revealed. But there’s still time to help their efforts, both with donations and buying raffle tickets for the auction items. The big ticket item, a pink Genuine Buddy 50cc scooter, you can try to win for $10 a raffle ticker, or 3 for $25. The winner of the scooter will announced at 10 p.m. Saturday night.

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There are a few other terrific items being raffled, too. For instance, there’s a custom-made guitar by local luthier Tom Ribbecke of Ribbecke Guitars. To win the guitar, it’s also $10 a raffle ticker, or 3 for $25.

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There’s also a pink bicycle, an Electra Beach Cruiser, “graciously donated by The Bike Peddler in Santa Rosa.” Tickets for the bike are only $1 per raffle ticket, or 6 for $5.

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There’s also some cool t-shirts, designed by local artist Laurel Gregory.

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Gregory also created a pink painting of a Pliny the Elder bottle that will be auctioned Saturday.

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The scooter will be announced at 10 p.m., but the rest of the items will have the winners for them announced throughout the evening. So come and enjoy an evening at Russian River and help raise money for a very worthy cause. There will also be music, by Brothers Horse. In addition to Russian River’s regular beers, the special release Framboise for a Cure 2013 (bottles of which are sold out) will be tapped at 5:00 p.m. The beer uses Temptation as its base beer, to which 800 pounds of fresh raspberries are added (30 pounds per barrel), and then it’s aged for several months in Chardonnay barrels spiked with brett, lacto, and pedio. There are only two kegs of it left, and they’ll keep selling it until it runs out. This is your last chance to try this year’s version. There will also be 23 special growlers, screened in pink ink, and full of the Framboise beer available for a minimum donation of $100.

Come on down Saturday night and get All Hopped Up For the Cure!

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GABF Winners 2013

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Earlier today, the winners of the 32nd Great American Beer Festival were announced. A record 4,809 beers were judged in 84 categories by 201 judges, of which I was again privileged to be one. Some more factoids on the results and the festival:

  • Category with the most entries: American-style IPA: 252 entries
  • Average number of competition beers entered in each category: 51
  • 745 breweries in the competition from 49 states, plus Washington, D.C.
  • 230 breweries entered for the first time
  • 24 first-time breweries won medals
  • 2 breweries tied for most gold medals won; Firestone Walker and Left Hand Brewing
  • 624 breweries in the festival hall
  • Over 3,100 beers served at the festival
  • 49,000 attendees

Medals Won by State:

  1. California = 52
  2. Colorado = 45
  3. Oregon = 25
  4. Virginia = 14
  5. Pennsylvania = 12
  6. Texas = 10
  7. TIE: New Mexico, Ohio = 8
  8. TIE: Missouri, New York = 7
  9. TIE: Arizona, Utah, Wisconsin = 5
  10. TIE: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina, Washington = 4

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The 2013 Great American Beer Festival Winners

Category 1: American-Style Wheat Beer, 31 Entries
Gold: Shredders Wheat, Baker City Brewing Co., Baker City , OR
Silver: American Wheat , Gella’s Diner & Lb. Brewing Co., Hays, KS
Bronze: Super 77 Wheat, Wiley Roots Brewing Co., Greeley, CO

Category 2: American-Style Wheat Beer With Yeast, 32 Entries
Gold: American Hefeweizen, Gella’s Diner & Lb. Brewing Co., Hays, KS
Silver: Wheatfi sh, Great Northern Brewing Co., Whitefi sh, MT
Bronze: Helio Hefeweizen, Red Lodge Ales Brewing Co., Red Lodge, MT

Category 3: Fruit Beer, 73 Entries
Gold: Golden Knot – Chardonnay, Blue Moon Brewing Co., Denver, CO
Silver: Serendipity, New Glarus Brewing Co., New Glarus, WI
Bronze: Sparkleberry Ale, Bell’s Brewery, Galesburg, MI

Category 4: Fruit Wheat Beer, 48 Entries
Gold: Peachy Peach, Pagosa Brewing & Grill, Pagosa Springs, CO
Silver: Bitchin’ Berry, Great Basin Brewing Co. – Reno, Reno, NV
Bronze: Lilikoi Kepolo, Avery Brewing Co., Boulder, CO

Category 5: Field Beer or Pumpkin Beer, 91 Entries
Gold: Elektrick Cukumbahh, Trinity Brewing Co., Colorado Springs, CO
Silver: Anaheim IPA, Ram Restaurant and Brewery – Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN
Bronze: Splashing Pumpkin, Great South Bay Brewery, Bay Shore, NY

Category 6: Herb and Spice Beer, 134 Entries
Gold: Bitterama, Namaste Brewing at the Whip In, Austin, TX
Silver: Chai Milk Stout, Yak & Yeti Restaurant & Brewpub, Arvada, CO
Bronze: Elba, Black Star Co-op Pub and Brewery, Austin, TX

Category 7: Chocolate Beer, 39 Entries
Gold: Chocolate Oak Aged Yeti Imperial Stout, Great Divide Brewing Co., Denver, CO
Silver: The Fix, Elysian Brewing Co., Seattle, WA
Bronze: Chocolate Meltdown, Pennsylvania Brewing Co., Pittsburgh, PA

Category 8: Coff ee Beer, 92 Entries
Gold: Panama Joe’s Coff ee Stout, Il Vicino Brewing Co., Albuquerque, NM
Silver: Barrel-Aged Sump Coff ee Stout, Perennial Artisan Ales, St. Louis, MO
Bronze: System of a Stout, Beachwood BBQ & Brewing, Long Beach, CA

Category 9: Specialty Beer, 31 Entries
Gold: Warmer, Hangar 24 Craft Brewery, Redlands, CA
Silver: Fate Candy Bar Milk Stout, Fate Brewing Co. – Scottsdale, AZ, Scottsdale, AZ
Bronze: Pack Dog Peanut Butter Ale, Marley’s Brewery & Grille, Bloomsburg, PA

Category 10: Rye Beer, 63 Entries
Gold: LowRyeDer, SweetWater Brewing Co., Atlanta, GA
Silver: Rye Smile, Triple Rock Brewery, Berkeley, CA
Bronze: RastafaRye, Blue Point Brewing Co., Patchogue, NY

Category 11: Specialty Honey Beer, 40 Entries
Gold: Buzzed Bee Honey Ale, High Sierra Brewing Co., Carson City, NV
Silver: Midas Touch, Dogfi sh Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Bronze: West Bound Braggot, Twisted Pine Brewing Co., Boulder, CO

Category 12: Session Beer, 56 Entries
Gold: Beer Hunter, Pizza Port Ocean Beach, Ocean Beach, CA
Silver: MCA, 21st Amendment Brewery, San Francisco, CA
Bronze: Torque, Kinetic Brewing Co., Lancaster, CA

Category 13: Other Strong Beer, 51 Entries
Gold: Mass Rising, Jack’s Abby Brewing, Framingham, MA
Silver: Power Wagon, Big Sky Brewing Co., Missoula, MT
Bronze: XX Dwarf, Detroit Beer Co., Detroit, MI

Category 14: Experimental Beer, 66 Entries
Gold: Hops n’ Roses, Captain Lawrence Brewing Co., Elmsford, NY
Silver: Dragon’s Milk Reserve – Smaug’s Breath, New Holland Brewing Co., Holland, MI
Bronze: Redrock Paardebloem, Redrock Brewery, Salt Lake City, UT

Category 15: Fresh Hop Ale, 46 Entries
Gold: Cent’s and Censability, Old Town Brewing Co., Portland, OR
Silver: Trail Head, Fat Heads Brewery, Middleburg Heights, OH
Bronze: Fresh Hop Pallet Jack, Barley Brown’s Brew Pub, Baker City, OR

Category 16: Indigenous Beer, 28 Entries
Gold: Vinland 2, Mystic Brewery, Chelsea, MA
Silver: Sage Fight Imperial IPA, Deschutes Brewery Bend Public House, Bend, OR
Bronze: Poor Richard’s Tavern Spruce, Yards Brewing Co., Philadelphia, PA

Category 17: Gluten-Free Beer, 14 Entries
Gold: Harvester Brewing IPA No. 1, Harvester Brewing, Portland, OR
Silver: Gluten Free, Deschutes Brewery Bend Public House, Bend, OR
Bronze: Gluten-Free Brown Ale, New Planet Beer Co., Boulder, CO

Category 18: American-Belgo-Style Ale, 81 Entries
Gold: BrickStone Belgo-APA, BrickStone Brewery, Bourbonnais, IL
Silver: Belgo Hoptologist, Knee Deep Brewing Co., Lincoln, CA
Bronze: Little Green, Flat Tail Brewing Co., Corvallis, OR

Category 19: American-Style Sour Ale, 31 Entries
Gold: Ching Ching, Bend Brewing Co., Bend, OR
Silver: Myrtle, The Commons Brewery, Portland, OR
Bronze: Red Poppy, The Lost Abbey, San Marcos, CA

Category 20: American-Style Brett Beer, 38 Entries
Gold: Serenity, Wicked Weed Brewing, Asheville, NC
Silver: Sanctifi cation, Russian River Brewing Co., Santa Rosa, CA
Bronze: HopSavant, Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, Denver, CO

Category 21: Wood- and Barrel-Aged Beer, 49 Entries
Gold: Hellshire III, Oakshire Brewing, Eugene, OR
Silver: Barrel-Aged Frostbite Lager, Ram Restaurant and Brewery – Illinois, Wheeling, IL
Bronze: Rum Barrel Belgian Dubbel Style Ale, Three Brothers Brewing, Harrisonburg, VA

Category 22: Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer, 117 Entries
Gold: Afternoon Delight, Sun King Brewing Co., Indianapolis, IN
Silver: Twisted Trace, Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery, Minneapolis, MN
Bronze: Barrel-Aged Full Malted Jacket, Beachwood BBQ & Brewing, Long Beach, CA

Category 23: Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Stout, 89 Entries
Gold: Blot Out the Sun, Three Floyds Brewing Co., Munster, IN
Silver: Barrel-Aged Narwhal, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., Chico, CA
Bronze: Barrel Aged BORIS The Crusher, Hoppin’ Frog Brewing Co., Akron, OH

Category 24: Wood- and Barrel-Aged Sour Beer, 76 Entries
Gold: Love Child No. 3, Boulevard Brewing Co., Kansas City, MO
Silver: Dark and Stormy, McKenzie Brew House, Glen Mills, PA
Bronze: Pentagram, Surly Brewing Co., Brooklyn Center, MN

Category 25: Aged Beer, 31 Entries
Gold: Lovely, Bend Brewing Co., Bend, OR
Silver: 2009 Big Black Voodoo Daddy, Voodoo Brewery, Meadville, PA
Bronze: COLOSSAL ONE, Port City Brewing Co., Alexandria, VA

Category 26: Kellerbier or Zwickelbier, 30 Entries
Gold: Keller Pils, Prost Brewing Co., Denver, CO
Silver: Surfl iner Lager, Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co., Santa Barbara, CA
Bronze: Progress Pilsner, Market Garden Brewery, Cleveland, OH

Category 27: Smoke Beer, 79 Entries
Gold: Second Hand Smoke, SandLot, Denver, CO
Silver: Smokin’ Handsome, Yellow Springs Brewery, Yellow Springs, OH
Bronze: COLOSSAL TWO, Port City Brewing Co., Alexandria, VA

Category 28: American-Style or International-Style Pilsener, 29 Entries
Silver: Gold Leaf Lager, Devils Backbone Brewing Co. – Basecamp, Roseland, VA
Bronze: Gold Country Pilsner, Auburn Alehouse, Auburn, CA

Category 29: German-Style Pilsener, 56 Entries
Gold: Pivo, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Paso Robles, CA
Silver: Pilsner, Marble Brewery, Albuquerque, NM
Bronze: Sunshine Pils, Tröegs Brewing Co., Hershey, PA

Category 30: Bohemian-Style Pilsener, 53 Entries
Gold: Bohemian Pilsner, Ninkasi Brewing Co., Eugene, OR
Silver: Czech Pilsner, Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant, Broomfield, CO
Bronze: Bohemian Pilsner, Mother Earth Brewing, Kinston, NC

Category 31: Munich-Style Helles, 42 Entries
Gold: Helles Festbier, Hoppers Grill & Brewing Co., Midvale, UT
Silver: Saint Arnold Summer Pils, Saint Arnold Brewing Co., Houston, TX
Bronze: TAPS Helles, TAPS Fish House & Brewery – Brea, Brea, CA

Category 32: Dortmunder or German-Style Oktoberfest, 29 Entries
Gold: Move Back, SandLot, Denver, CO
Silver: Oktoberfest, Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co., Santa Barbara, CA
Bronze: Thunder from Dortmunder, Marble Brewery, Albuquerque, NM

Category 33: American-Style Lager or Light Lager, 42 Entries
Gold: Budweiser Select, Anheuser-Busch, St. Louis, MO
Silver: Miller High Life, Miller Brewing Co., Milwaukee, WI
Bronze: Special Export, Pabst Brewing Co., Los Angeles, CA

Category 34: American-Style Cream Ale, 37 Entries
Gold: Natural Ice, Anheuser-Busch, St. Louis, MO
Silver: Old Style, Pabst Brewing Co., Los Angeles, CA
Bronze: Rainier, Pabst Brewing Co., Los Angeles, CA

Category 35: Vienna-Style Lager, 30 Entries
Gold: Churchville Lager, Neshaminy Creek Brewing, Croydon, PA
Silver: Oktoberfest, Port City Brewing Co., Alexandria, VA
Bronze: Octoberfest , Sly Fox Brewing Co., Pottstown, PA

Category 36: German-Style Märzen, 51 Entries
Gold: Rhinofest, Lost Rhino Brewing Co., Ashburn, VA
Silver: Octoberfest, Great American Restaurants, Centreville, VA
Bronze: Dogtoberfest, Flying Dog Brewery, Frederick, MD

Category 37: American-Style Amber Lager, 61 Entries
Gold: Rod’s Steam Bitter, Second Street Brewery, Santa Fe, NM
Silver: OktoberFish, Flying Fish Brewing Co., Somerdale, NJ
Bronze: Schell’s Oktoberfest, August Schell Brewing Co., New Ulm, MN

Category 38: European-Style Dunkel, 19 Entries
Gold: Munich Dunkel, Carver Brewing Co., Durango, CO
Silver: Heart of Darkness Dunkel, Springfi eld Brewing Co., Springfield, MO
Bronze: The Fearless Youth, Grimm Brothers Brewhouse, Loveland, CO

Category 39: American-Style Dark Lager, 22 Entries
Gold: Old Virginia Dark, Devils Backbone Brewing Co. – Basecamp, Roseland, VA
Silver: Leinenkugel’s Creamy Dark, Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Co., Chippewa Falls, WI
Bronze: Black Diamond, Bend Brewing Co., Bend, OR

Category 40: German-Style Schwarzbier, 26 Entries
Gold: Black Thunder, Austin Beerworks, Austin, TX
Silver: Black Knight, Fat Heads Brewery & Saloon, North Olmsted, OH
Bronze: TAPS Schwarzbier, TAPS Fish House & Brewery, Corona, CA

Category 41: Bock, 28 Entries
Gold: Troegenator Double Bock, Tröegs Brewing Co., Hershey, PA
Silver: Andygator, Abita Brewing Co., Abita Springs, LA
Bronze: Goat Rancher, SandLot, Denver, CO

Category 42: German-Style Doppelbock or Eisbock, 32 Entries
Gold: Samuel Adams Double Bock, Samuel Adams,Cincinnati, OH
Silver: Christian Moerlein Emancipator, Christian Moerlein Brewing Co., Cincinnati, OH
Bronze: Resurrection Doppelbock, Red Lodge Ales Brewing Co., Red Lodge, MT

Category 43: Baltic-Style Porter, 16 Entries
Gold: Black Eagle Baltic Porter, Black Tooth Brewing Co., Sheridan, WY
Silver: The Hammer, Rock Bottom Brewery, Broomfi eld, CO
Bronze: Danzig, Devils Backbone Brewing Co. – Basecamp, Roseland, VA

Category 44: Golden or Blonde Ale, 69 Entries
Gold: Foam Top, Beachwood BBQ & Brewing, Long Beach, CA
Silver: Steelhead Extra Pale Ale, Mad River Brewing Co., Blue Lake, CA
Bronze: Kiwanda Cream Ale, Pelican Brewing Co., Pacific City, OR

Category 45: German-Style Kölsch, 60 Entries
Gold: Leinenkugel’s Canoe Paddler, Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Co., Chippewa Falls, WI
Silver: Tailgater Kölsch, Flat Tail Brewing Co., Corvallis, OR
Bronze: Potential Blonde, Kinetic Brewing Co., Lancaster, CA

Category 46: English-Style Summer Ale, 27 Entries
Gold: True Blonde Ale, Ska Brewing, Durango, CO
Silver: Hanging Lake, Glenwood Canyon Brewing Co., Glenwood Springs, CO
Bronze: Sum’r, Uinta Brewing Co., Salt Lake City, UT

Category 47: Classic English-Style Pale Ale, 29 Entries
Gold: 5 Barrel Pale Ale, Odell Brewing Co., Fort Collins, CO
Silver: Extra Pale Summer Ale, Dry Dock Brewing Co. – North Dock, Aurora, CO
Bronze: Breakside ESB, Breakside Brewery – Pub Brewery, Portland, OR

Category 48: English-Style India Pale Ale, 31 Entries
Gold: Taproom IPA, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Paso Robles, CA
Silver: Silverspot IPA, Pelican Brewing Co., Pacific City, OR
Bronze: Enterprise IPA, Dry Dock Brewing Co. – North Dock, Aurora, CO

Category 49: International-Style Pale Ale, 30 Entries
Gold: Hand Truck, Baker City Brewing Co., Baker City , OR
Silver: Amazeballs, Peekskill Brewery, Peekskill, NY
Bronze: IPL, AC Golden, Golden, CO

Category 50: American-Style Pale Ale, 124 Entries
Gold: Lumberyard American Pale Ale, Lumberyard Brewing Co., Flagstaff , AZ
Silver: Featherweight Pale, Cannonball Creek Brewing Co., Golden, CO
Bronze: Citra Rye Pale Ale, Joseph James Brewing Co., Henderson, NV

Category 51: American-Style Strong Pale Ale, 120 Entries
Gold: Bonobos, Monkey Paw Brewing Co., San Diego, CA
Silver: Hop Knot, Four Peaks Brewing Co., Tempe, AZ
Bronze: Kung Fu Elvis, Pizza Port Ocean Beach, Ocean Beach, CA

Category 52: American-Style India Pale Ale, 252 Entries
Gold: Pallet Jack IPA, Barley Brown’s Brew Pub, Baker City, OR
Silver: Union Jack, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Paso Robles, CA
Bronze: Project Dank: Operation Pharoah’s Return, La Cumbre Brewing Co., Albuquerque, NM

Category 53: Imperial India Pale Ale, 149 Entries
Gold: Hop JuJu, Fat Heads Brewery, Middleburg Heights, OH
Silver: Permanent Funeral, Three Floyds Brewing Co., Munster, IN
Bronze: Notch 9 Double IPA, Smartmouth Brewing Co., Norfolk, VA

Category 54: American-Style Amber/Red Ale, 89 Entries
Gold: Prohibition Ale, Speakeasy Ales & Lagers, San Francisco, CA
Bronze: Red Rock, Triple Rock Brewery, Berkeley, CA

Category 55: Imperial Red Ale, 56 Entries
Silver: Rhino Chaser, Pizza Port Ocean Beach, Ocean Beach, CA
Bronze: Bombay Rouge Red IPA, Third Street Aleworks, Santa Rosa, CA

Category 56: English-Style Mild Ale, 35 Entries
Gold: S.S. Minnow Mild, Dry Dock Brewing Co. – South Dock, Aurora, CO
Silver: Brawler, Yards Brewing Co., Philadelphia, PA
Bronze: Ale of Fergus, Devils Backbone Brewing Co. – Basecamp, Roseland, VA

Category 57: Ordinary or Special Bitter, 37 Entries
Gold: Sawtooth Ale, Left Hand Brewing Co., Longmont, CO
Silver: HMS Victory Amber, Dry Dock Brewing Co. – North Dock, Aurora, CO
Bronze: Men’s Room Original Red, Elysian Brewing Co., Seattle, WA

Category 58: Extra Special Bitter, 56 Entries
Gold: Public Ale, Community Beer Co., Dallas, TX
Silver: True Brit IPA, Summit Brewing Co., Saint Paul, MN
Bronze: Fed, White & Brew, American Brewing Co., Edmonds, WA

Category 59: Scottish-Style Ale, 42 Entries
Gold: Scottish Ale, Campbell Brewing Co., Campbell , CA
Silver: Kilt Lifter, Four Peaks Brewing Co., Tempe, AZ
Bronze: Redhawk Ale, Rockyard Brewing Co., Castle Rock, CO

Category 60: Irish-Style Red Ale, 48 Entries
Gold: Red Trolley Ale, Karl Strauss Brewing Co., San Diego, CA
Silver: Colorado Boy Irish Ale, Colorado Boy Brewing Co., Ridgway, CO
Bronze: Ragtop Red, Rock Bottom Brewery, Broomfield, CO

Category 61: English-Style Brown Ale, 41 Entries
Gold: Bandit Brown, City Star Brewing, Berthoud, CO
Silver: Sierra Blanca Nut Brown Ale, Sierra Blanca Brewing Co., Moriarty, NM
Bronze: Longboard Brown, Rock Bottom Brewery, Broomfield, CO

Category 62: American-Style Brown Ale, 66 Entries
Gold: Davy Brown Ale, Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co. – Buellton, Buellton, CA
Silver: End Of The Trail Brown Ale, Blue Corn Brewery, Santa Fe, NM
Bronze: Doryman’s Dark Ale, Pelican Brewing Co., Pacifi c City, OR

Category 63: American-Style Black Ale, 73 Entries
Gold: Wookey Jack, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Paso Robles, CA
Silver: Black Sails, Coronado Brewing Company Brewpub, Coronado, CA
Bronze: Oxymoron, Oceanside Ale Works, Oceanside, CA

Category 64: German-Style Altbier, 32 Entries
Gold: Tree Hugger, Terrapin Beer Co., Athens, GA
Silver: Brewers Cut Altbier, Real Ale Brewing Co., Blanco, TX
Bronze: Echo Amber, Echo Brewing Co., Frederick, CO

Category 65: German-Style Sour Ale, 46 Entries
Gold: German Sparkle Party Berliner Weiss, 10 Barrel Brewing Co., Bend, OR
Silver: Berliner Metro Weiss, Devils Backbone Brewing Co. – Basecamp, Roseland, VA
Bronze: Passionfruit Sour, Breakside Brewery – Milwaukie Brewery, Milwaukie, OR

Category 66: South German-Style Hefeweizen, 77 Entries
Gold: Big Horn Hefeweizen, CB and Potts Restaurant and Brewery, Highlands Ranch, CO
Silver: Ebel’s Weiss, Two Brothers Brewing Co., Warrenville, IL
Bronze: Brooklyner Weisse, Brooklyn Brewery, Brooklyn, NY

Category 67: German-Style Wheat Ale, 28 Entries
Gold: Slam Dunkel, Steamworks Brewing Co., Durango, CO
Silver: Bavarian Sun, Ram Restaurant and Brewery, Wheeling, IL
Bronze: Saint Arnold Weedwacker, Saint Arnold Brewing Co., Houston, TX

Category 68: Belgian-Style Witbier, 66 Entries
Gold: Optimal Wit, Port City Brewing Co., Alexandria, VA
Silver: Wasatch White Label, Utah Brewers Co-op, Salt Lake City, UT
Bronze: ZON, Boulevard Brewing Co., Kansas City, MO

Category 69: French & Belgian-Style Saison, 119 Entries
Gold: Liopard Oir Farmhouse Saison, Lavery Brewing Co., Erie, PA
Silver: Urban Farmhouse Ale, The Commons Brewery, Portland, OR
Bronze: Maggie’s Farmhouse Ale, Crossroads Brewing Co., Athens, NY

Category 70: Belgian- and French-Style Ale, 71 Entries
Gold: Azreal, Devils Backbone Brewing Co. – Outpost, Lexington, VA
Silver: Grisette, Sly Fox Brewing Co., Pottstown, PA
Bronze: California Ale, Telegraph Brewing Co., Santa Barbara, CA

Category 71: Belgian-Style Lambic or Sour Ale, 47 Entries
Gold: American Blackberry Sour Ale, New Glarus Brewing Co., New Glarus, WI
Silver: Squatters Fifth Element, Squatters and Wasatch Beers, Salt Lake City, UT
Bronze: Atrial Rubicite, Jester King Brewery, Austin, TX

Category 72: Belgian-Style Abbey Ale, 88 Entries
Gold: Cedar Creek Belgian Style Dubbel, Cedar Creek Brewery, Seven Points, TX
Silver: AleSmith Decadence 2012 Quadrupel, AleSmith Brewing Co., San Diego, CA
Bronze: Ommegang Three Philosophers, Brewery Ommegang, Cooperstown , NY

Category 73: Belgian-Style Strong Specialty Ale, 80 Entries
Gold: Stumblin’ Monk, Stewart’s Brewing Co., Bear, DE
Silver: Quad Damn It, Chicago Brewing Co., Las Vegas, NV
Bronze: The Twelve – Belgian Quad, Black Diamond Brewing Co., Concord, CA

Category 74: Brown Porter, 30 Entries
Gold: Old Tom Porter, Piney River Brewing Co., Bucyrus, MO
Silver: St. Charles Porter, Blackstone Brewing Co., Nashville, TN
Bronze: Blind Jake, Pinthouse Pizza, Austin, TX

Category 75: Robust Porter, 74 Entries
Gold: Moonlight Porter, Rock Bottom Brewery, Broomfi eld, CO
Silver: Black Robusto Porter, Drake’s Brewing Co., San Leandro, CA
Bronze: Genuine Oatmeal Porter, Carolina Brewery, Pittsboro, NC

Category 76: Classic Irish-Style Dry Stout, 31 Entries
Gold: Blarney Sisters Dry Irish Stout, Third Street Aleworks, Santa Rosa, CA
Silver: Stearns Stout, Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co., Santa Barbara, CA
Bronze: Dragoon’s Dry Irish Stout, Moylan’s Brewing Co., Novato, CA

Category 77: Foreign-Style Stout, 31 Entries
Gold: Fade to Black Volume 1, Left Hand Brewing Co., Longmont, CO
Silver: Don Vanuchi “The Killer”, Baker City Brewing Co., Baker City , OR
Bronze: Tsunami Stout, Pelican Brewing Co., Pacific City, OR

Category 78: American-Style Stout, 40 Entries
Gold: Kilgore Stout, Beachwood BBQ & Brewing, Long Beach, CA
Silver: Battlecat Stout, Cannonball Creek Brewing Co., Golden, CO
Bronze: Stumpy Ridge Stout, Black Tooth Brewing Co., Sheridan, WY

Category 79: Sweet Stout or Cream Stout, 39 Entries
Gold: Milk Stout, Left Hand Brewing Co., Longmont, CO
Silver: Udder Love, Beachwood BBQ & Brewing, Long Beach, CA
Bronze: Dark Lightning Milk Stout, Thunder Canyon Brewery, Tucson, AZ

Category 80: Oatmeal Stout, 48 Entries
Gold: Stagecoach Stout, Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co. – Buellton, Buellton, CA
Silver: Gold Medal Stout, Blue Corn Brewery, Santa Fe, NM
Bronze: Oats., Pizza Port Solana Beach, Solana Beach, CA

Category 81: Imperial Stout, 59 Entries
Gold: Ale Epeteios, Left Coast Brewing Co., San Clemente, CA
Silver: Russian Imperial Stout, Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant, Wilmington, DE
Bronze: Hammer and Sickle, Renegade Brewing Co., Denver, CO

Category 82: Scotch Ale, 44 Entries
Gold: Wee Heavy, Dry Dock Brewing Co. – South Dock, Aurora, CO
Silver: Loose Lucy Scotch Ale, Seabright Brewery, Santa Cruz, CA
Bronze: Heritage, Bear Republic Brewing Co., Healdsburg, CA

Category 83: Old Ale or Strong Ale, 41 Entries
Gold: Pilgrim’s Dole, New Holland Brewing Co., Holland, MI
Silver: Irish Walker, Olde Hickory Brewery, Hickory, NC
Bronze: Mule Kick, City Star Brewing, Berthoud, CO

Category 84: Barley Wine-Style Ale, 55 Entries
Gold: AleSmith Old Numbskull, AleSmith Brewing Co., San Diego, CA
Silver: Old Bounder, Boundary Bay Brewery, Bellingham, WA
Bronze: Release the Hounds Barley Wine, Bull & Bush Brewery, Denver, CO

2013 Great American Beer Festival Pro-Am Competition
Gold: Poblano, Cigar City Brewing
Brewmaster: Wayne Wambles, Cigar City, and AHA member Jeff Gladish
Silver: Charlie’s Brown, New Belgium Brewing Co.
Brewmaster: Peter Bouckaert/Grady Hull, New Belgium Brewing Co., and AHA member Mike Formisan
Bronze: Oatmeal Stout, Upslope Brewing Co.
Brewmaster: Alex Violette, Upslope Brewing Co., and AHA member Derek Ordway

The 2013 Great American Beer Festival Brewery & Brewer of the Year Awards

Very Small Brewing Company and Very Small Brewing Company Brewer of the Year
Baker City Brewing Company
Brewer: Marks Lanham and Eli Dickison

Small Brewing Company and Small Brewing Company Brewer of the Year
Devils Backbone Brewing Company – Basecamp
Brewer: Jason Oliver

Mid-Size Brewing Company and Mid-Size Brewing Company Brewer of the Year
Firestone Walker Brewing Company
Brewer: Matt Brynildson

Large Brewing Company and Large Brewing Company Brewer of the Year
Sandlot
Brewer: John, Tom, Bill & Addison

Small Brewpub and Small Brewpub Brewer of the Year
Gella’s Diner & Lb Brewing Company
Brewer: Gerald Wyman

Mid-Size Brewpub of the Year
Beachwood BBQ & Brewing
Brewer: Julian Shrago and Ian McCall

Large Brewpub and Large Brewpub Brewer of the Year
Pelican Brewing Company
Brewer: Darron Welch and Steve Panos

Brewpub Group and Brewpub Group Brewer of the Year
Rock Bottom Brewery
Brewer: Team Rock Bottom

Porter’s Porter Bottling Day

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A few weeks ago, for my son’s 12th birthday, we brewed his first batch of homebrew and documented the day as Porter’s Porter Day. The beer was ready to be bottled last weekend, but we only got around to it yesterday. It went surprisingly smoothly.

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Porter having some fun while sterilizing the bottles, which Vinnie Cilurzo from Russian River Brewing was kind enough to donate.

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Both Porter and his little sister Alice were on hand to help.

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Alice seemed to enjoy filling the bottles.

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I worked the capper, but everybody contributed to the effort.

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Porter kept the bottles flowing, from the drying rack to his sister.

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But Porter also took his turn filling bottles, too.

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While I was really the only one who could use the capper.

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Eventually, we ran out of beer and filled the final bottle.

Our yield was about 8 gallons, which filled 57 sixteen ounce bottles, which are now bottle-conditioning in the beer cellar. In a few weeks Porter and I will be on the Brewing Network’s Sunday Show and I’ll taste the results, along with the rest of the adults on the show. Fingers crossed, hopefully it won’t suck. But either way, it’s been great fun homebrewing with my son.

Oktoberfest Munich Infographic

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Today’s infographic is still yet another poster about Oktoberfest, which began six days ago in Munich, Germany. This one is titled simply Oktoberfest Munich and was created by Destination, a travel website. It features several factoids and then compares two other prominent Oktoberfests, one in Brazil and the other in Cincinnati.

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CLick here to see the infographic full size.

How To Survive Oktoberfest

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Today’s infographic is still another poster about Oktoberfest, which began four days ago in Munich, Germany. This one is called How To Survive Oktoberfest with Your Liver Intact and was created by Accredited Online Colleges. It features a brief history of Oktoberfest and some tips for navigating the festival.

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Click here to see the infographic full size.