The Michael James Jackson Foundation for Brewing and Distilling (MJF) launched in July 2020. Its mission is to grant scholarships to fund technical education within the brewing and distilling industry for people of color in the U.S. At the virtual GABF, Garrett Oliver, brewmaster at Brooklyn Brewery, discussed the foundation, how it came together, and why it’s so important.
Last week, Lock 27 Brewing in Dayton, Ohio, won their first ever medal from the Great American Beer Festival for their Wolk (pronounced “Volk”) Witbier. But that wasn’t really the plan. They’d submitted the refreshing wheat beer and a handful of others mostly to get constructive feedback from the world-class beer experts who judge at GABF. Soon enough, an opportunity for growth turned into a chance to celebrate.
What if the money you spent on beer also supported deserving causes in your community? That’s the question the founders of Lady Justice Brewing in Aurora, Colorado, asked themselves a few years ago when they were working in the non-profit sector. Kate Power, Betsy Lay, and Jen Cuesta were having a beer after work, commiserating about the lack of funds for the causes they believed in. What if their beer money could help?
Wolf’s Ridge Brewing head brewer Chris Davison found out his brewery had won two medals at the Great American Beer Festival in the most 2020 way possible: over Zoom while getting his daughter ready for bed. The Columbus, Ohio, brewery’s team had a company Zoom call going while the awards were announced virtually from Denver. Chris had bedtime duties, and parenting supersedes brewing.
Much like the rest of 2020, this year’s Great American Beer Festival (GABF) has been anything but the norm. Without a week filled with rare beer releases, mini-festivals drawing hype breweries from across the country, lines stacked on top of …
Tomorrow night marks the 34th iteration of the competition portion of the Great American Beer Festival. And while this GABF week looks and feels unlike any other, tomorrow night’s awards are still sure to usher in socially distanced causes for …
The conversation that begat Jameson Caskmates transpired at a pub in Ireland’s County Cork in 2014, eventually evolving and growing into a program that included numerous U.S. Craft Breweries and ultimately a partnership with the Great American Beer Festival (2018 & 2019). Although GABF is virtual this year due to the relentless pandemic, Jameson remains focused as ever on its Caskmates and craft-beer partnerships.
As 2020 continues to shift all of our favorite events to digital platforms, this year’s Great American Beer Festival has introduced a digital brewery passport in an effort to give beer fans the opportunity to enjoy free beers, discounted merch, …
It’s tempting to bemoan the fact that the industry remains in a lengthy pandemic-induced pivot. However, it’s time to start focusing on what is instead of what isn’t happening. For this year’s Great American Beer Festival (GABF), beer drinkers will have a chance to purchase a GABF Passport that gives them access to a host of good deals (an idea similar to Chicago and Illinois Craft Beer Weeks held in previous years). One can purchase the $20 GABF Passport and start enjoying brewery deals October 1 through October 18. As well, the passport gives beer drinkers an opportunity to attend (view) the star-studded Virtual GABF Festival (October 16-17) (which includes the awards ceremony).
For the past 22 years, on the Monday before the Great American Beer Festival (GABF), one of the country’s most iconic beer bars has helped usher in the event with a celebratory kick-off tapping at 5 p.m.
However this year, on September 21, when Falling Rock Tap House’s GABF countdown timer would normally have ticked down to all zeros, there will be little pomp and circumstance as the festival transitions to a virtual format in response to the pandemic.
The writing has been on the wall for some time, but this morning the Brewers Association officially confirmed that this year’s Great American Beer Festival (GABF) will not take place in the form that beer fans know and love. Instead, …
Being a fan of spicy food, I’ve tried to like chili beers. Some are too mild, some blast out my taste buds; I rarely finish a full pint before tapping out. But when I heard that the GABF Gold Medal Winner for Chili Beer was a quick drive away in Omaha, Nebraska, I knew I had to try it.
When you take your first sip of Brickway Brewery & Distillery’s Jalapeno Pineapple Pils, you will set down your glass and say, “Oh, I get it. That’s what a chili beer is supposed to taste like.”
The GABF Gold Medal awarded to Begyle Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Pajamas validated what many already knew: in a town abound in exceptional bourbon-barrel-aged beer, Begyle’s has risen to become one of the best. The 2019 release on Friday, November 15, will be the first for the Community Supported Brewery (CSB) since winning the medal. They graciously hosted PorchDrinking a couple of days early, offering to provide us with a few tastes and plenty of discussion about its barreling program.
Market Garden Brewery in the historic Ohio City neighborhood of Cleveland, Ohio, has made a name for itself on the success of an unlikely flagship beer for a modern craft brewery. Prosperity Wheat is a Bavarian-style Hefeweizen, and it won the gold medal for the style at the Great American Beer Festival last month.
Denver’s Comrade Brewing Company showed its true superpower at this year’s Great American Beer Festival: winning medals. Comrade took home golds for SuperPower IPA and More Dodge Less RAM and was also named Small Brewing Company of the Year.
Superpower IPA beat out 130 other entries to win the American-Style Strong Pale Ale category to prove why it has been a taproom staple since Comrade opened five years ago.
When we speak about the 1990’s Chicago Bulls, John Wooden’s UCLA Bruins from the mid 60’s through 70’s, the 1950’s Yankees with Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, and Yogi Berra, or more contemporary examples like Geno Auriemma’s UConn Women’s Basketball teams from the mid 90’s to today, and from 2001 to today, the New England Patriots, we’re talking about iconic programs that have achieved greatness for such a sustained period of time and consistency, that they transcend normal recognition. They become spoken about in rarified air, as dynasties.
Brink Brewing in the College Hill neighborhood of northern Cincinnati just opened in 2017, but they already have seven medals and awards from the Great American Beer Festival. In fact, they’ve never failed to medal in the three GABFs since their founding. Last week they brought home gold medals for their Hold the Reins English Mild and Moozie Milk Stout, as well as top honors for Very Small Brewing Company of the Year, which is awarded to a brewery producing fewer than 1,000 barrels of beer annually.
For the second year, Jameson Whiskey sponsored and participated in the Great American Beer Festival (GABF). Twenty-two brewing partners used Jameson Irish Whiskey barrels to age beer and then pour the finished product for fans in the energetic, music-filled Caskmates Barrel Aged Beer Garden. For this Irish (craft beer loving) American writer, it was my (pleasurable) task to drink as many of the 45-plus creations and provide my feedback.
Non-alcoholic beers were an emerging category of beer at the 2019 Great American Beer Festival with several breweries participating in both the festival and the competition. While they played a small part in the overall event, their addition to the competition this year may be a harbinger of things to come if this trends continue in the right direction.
Pastry stouts, hazy IPAs and rare sours tend to command most of the buzz at the Great American Beer Festival; the lines at brewery booths pouring those beers last week in Denver certainly attested to that. However, I chose a different tasting route for my festival experience. As I wandered the festival floor, I didn’t so much choose “the road less traveled” as much as an overgrown path forgotten by time: I wanted to taste as many obscure, historical beer styles as I could.
GABF offers a wonderful educational opportunity for anyone who wants to taste styles largely lost to history. Want to know what a gruit tastes like? Want to compare multiple export stouts or Dortmunder lagers beside each other? You’ll never have a better chance to do it than at GABF.