#9beer's Jesse Folk will be covering the Great American Beer Festival from Denver! Follow @wcpojesse on Twitter to see if any local brewers won as the announcements are made!
CINCINNATI -- The Great American Beer Festival is just around the corner and the Queen City is looking to make a big entry into the craft beer world.
Every year hundreds of brewers from across the country enter thousands of beers into the competition and tens of thousands of beer enthusiasts descend upon Denver to sample some of the best craft beer in the world.
During last year’s beer fest, more than 660 breweries entered 4,338 beers for competition in 84 categories covering 134 beer styles.
The Brewers Association – the organization that puts on the event – said this year they’ve had their largest field of entries to date and had to call in 185 beer experts from 11 countries to participate with help from 120 volunteers.
This year also saw a bit of controversy for the venerable festival. Not only did tickets for entry sell out in record time, the servers became overloaded by all the brewers trying to get into the competition.
A few local brewers said they were unable to log in because the system was so jammed. That said, Cincinnati will still have a good showing at the festival as several first-time competitors will be joining the veterans to show off their beer.
Christian Moerlein will field an impressive array of styles at the event. At the Christian Moerlein booth, they will be serving the Helles Lager, Barbarossa Double Dark Lager, OTR Ale, Northern Liberties IPA, Seven hefewizen, Vanilla Porter, Uwanafix Belgian Style Grand Cru, Zepplin Bavarian Pale Ale, Philippus Kirche Kolsch and Peatty Pepper Porter. The brewery will be entering all of those beers into competition as well as the Exposition Vienna Lager, Emancipator Doppelbock, Christkindl winter seasonal, Coffee Porter, Dubel IPA 2012 / 2013 (two entries), and the bourbon barrel aged Poe Peaty Oui-Eve.
MadTree Brewing will have a booth at the event and will be giving out samples of its Psychopathy IPA, Amber Brown and Identity Crisis Black IPA. Those beers will also be entered into the competition.
Listermann Brewing will enter its Serpentine Wheat Ale, White Death Winter Warmer, Chickow Hazelnut Double Brown Ale, Nutcase Peanut Butter Porter, Gravitator Dopplebock and Friar Bacon Smoked Bock. The entries will also be served at the booth.
The guys at Rivertown Brewing will be serving their pomegranate lambic, traditional lambic, Pumpkin Ale and Roebling Porter. However, they were one of the unlucky few who were locked out of the system. Fortunately they were able to enter their Pumpkin Ale for competition.
Rhinegeist Brewing will be submitting and serving its Cougar Golden Ale, Uncle British Mild Ale, Fiction Belgian Extra Pale Ale, Truth IPA and Sabertooth Tiger Imperial IPA. In addition to that, Truth will be served at the Brewers Association booth and head brewer Jim Matt will join master cicerone Rich Higgins to give a talk on food pairing with IPAs.
Scott LaFollette, owner/brewer at Blank Slate Brewing , said he did submit three beers but changed his mind when he saw the trouble other brewers were having trying to enter their beers. LaFollette said he decided his time would be better spent focusing on the home market for right now.
For fans of local beer and newbies to the craft beer world, now is the time to get out to the taprooms to get a taste of what could be some gold medal winning beer.