The winners of the recently concluded Great American Beer Festival can now be found online. The following link will take you to a PDF file that has the gold, silver and bronze medals for each of 84 different style categories (American Style Wheat Beers to Barleywines).
The next link will take you to a list that you can search through by state, style of beer, year of award, etc. So if you are looking for all of the beers brewed in Wyoming that won a medal at the 2012 GABF this is where you should go.
Since it is a long list full of beers that are brewed regionally/locally and therefore probably ones you’ve never heard of, I’ll summarize with a few highlights that are of interest to me (and consequently should also be of interest to you)
The small Flat Tail Brewing in Corvallis, OR won two medals, a silver medal in the German Kolsch category for Tailgator Kolsch, and a bronze medal in the American-Belgium Ale category for Little Green. Ninkasi Brewing in Eugene won a gold medal for their Bohemian Pilsner.
Fat Heads Brewery outside of Cleveland won three medals, including a gold medal in the very competitive Imperial IPA category (149 entries) for Hop JuJu, and a silver medal in the Fresh Hop Ale category for Trail Head. Unfortunately neither beer is bottled. After reading the GABF awards I saw on facebook that Savor Market on Indianola had some Trail Head on tap a couple of weeks back, but sadly it is all gone now.
Having just finished an IPA taste test for this site I was interested to see what took home the gold for American Style IPA. It turns out it is made by a small brewery in Baker City, Oregon of all places, Pallet Jack IPA by Barley Brown’s Brew Pub. The runner up is Union Jack by Firestone Walker, and the bronze goes to You Don’t Know Jack, by Smart Ass Brewing in International Falls, MN. The beer that won this site’s IPA challenge, White Rajah, did not medal at the GABF but if it had been named Jack White Rajah maybe things would have turned out different.
Hoppin Frog up in Akron won a bronze medal in the Barrel Aged Strong Stout category for Barrel Aged Boris the Crusher. I will say that I have tried Boris the Crusher and its not a beer for the faint of heart. It was a bit much for me, but most of you are probably tougher than me anyway. Two other small breweries in Ohio took home medals. Yellow Springs Brewery took home a silver medal in the Smoke Beer category for thier entry, Smokin’ Hansome. Market Garden Brewery up in Cleveland (I think their brewpub is located right across the street from the Great Lakes Brewpub) was awarded a bronze medal for their Kellerbier Progress Pilsner. (Editors note: McNulty’s Bier Markt, which has a great selection of Belgian beers and was named a top 100 beer bar in America by Draft magazine is located on the same block as Market Garden and Great Lakes). This block of Cleveland makes a very strong case for the best concentration of beer bars in the entire state.)
The Pelican Brewpub in Pacific City, OR took home the prize for Best Large Brewpub. They also nabbed four medals: a silver medal in the English-style IPA category for Silvespot IPA, and bronze medals for Kiwanda Cream Ale, Doryman’s Dark Ale, and Tsunami Stout. I went to the Pelican this summer while on vacation. The setting is without a doubt one of the most gorgeous I’ve ever seen for a brewpub, right on the Oregon coast near Haystack Rock. However, I tried all four of their medal winning beers and found each one to be good but not outstanding. I went back to my notes and found that my own rating for Silverspot IPA was only a 6 out of 10. Cool bottles though.
Idaho breweries were shut out of the medals altogether.