World Beer Cup: Local winners and more

This year’s Craft Brewers Conference ended Friday evening with the announcement of World Beer Cup winners. Pennsylvania/Delaware/New Jersey breweries took a total of 14 medals (below).

Not surprisingly, American-style IPA drew the most entries (275), with gold going to I Love It! from Noble Ale Works in Anaheim, Calif., which also took a bronze for its Double IPA and was named world champion small brewing company. Sounds like it’s time for us hop heads to book a flight to southern California.

Other observations
  • I’m sure there’s some weird points-counting criteria that screwed Iron Hill out of being named world champion brewpub, but c’mon: Iron Hill took five (!) medals this year; no one else took more than two*.
  • No Belgian breweries won in the saison, blonde, dubbel, tripel, oud bruin or Belgian pale and dark categories. Neither Rochefort nor Westmalle nor Rodenbach nor Liefmans won. But Belgium’s Hoegaarden, which many believe has lost a step since it was bought out by Inbev, won gold for its classic witbier.
  • Other breweries that won na-da: Dogfish Head, Russian River, Avery, Allagash. They’re all world-class, but it just goes to show how tough the competition is these days.
  • The gold won by Kane for A Night to End All Dawns was the first ever for a New Jersey brewery.
  • Pennsylvania breweries, which used to dominate the German pils category, were shut out in the category, whose gold went to the exceptionally clean, light-bodied Trumer Pils.
  • A Korean brewery (Korea!) won a medal for Southern German-style hefeweizen; and Japanese breweries took two of the three medals for experimental beer.
  • Best beer names among award winners: I Dunkled in My Pants (Figueroa Mountain); Hissy Fit (Bitter Sisters); Chump Change (Oak Highlands); Sabre-Toothed Squirrel (Smog City).
  • Miller was named the world champion large brewery, because it won medals for Miller Lite and High Life. Seriously.
  • Number of medals won by the 8 American small breweries now owned by Anheuser-Busch: 4.
  • There’s a lot of buzz surrounding Asheville, N.C., these days, but the town managed to take home just 2 medals (both byWicked Weed). Meanwhile, San Diego scooped up 9, and both Portland, Oregon, and Denver each grabbed 8.
  • No gold medal in the wet hop ale category? That’s just dumb.

*UPDATE: Technically Ommegang won 3 medals, including a gold for Rosetta – an Ommegang recipe brewed at Belgium’s Liefmans brewery. Thx to Brian Crawley for the backstory.

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Comments

  1. Jack Curtin  May 7, 2016

    > I’m sure there’s some weird points-counting criteria that screwed Iron Hill out of being named world champion brewpub, but c’mon: Iron Hill took five (!) medals this year; no one else took more than two*. <

    I sent the BA folks an email about this early today, No response yet but nos I'm wondering if, differently from the GABF judging, they do this by individual locations (i.e., each Iron Hill medal was credited to the site which won, not the company as a whole.

    • don@joesixpack.net  May 7, 2016

      I dunno. They have a “large” brewpub category, which would imply multiple locations. Keep us posted if you get a reply.

      • Jack Curtin  May 8, 2016

        From Bart Watson, BA economist: “I’d have to check with Chris Swersey to be 100% sure, but I imagine it is because different locations entered separately and so only a single location’s medals count toward the brewery of the year awards.”

  2. Mark K  May 11, 2016

    Way to go Susquehanna Brewing Company!