The Great American Beer Festival is about the closest thing you can get to a Super Bowl for brewers.
Held every year in Denver, Colorado, the three-day event includes an awards ceremony in which breweries receive gold, silver, or bronze medals across nearly every style of beer imaginable. And if you weren’t streaming this ceremony live today like myself and so many others, I’m pleased to tell you that Charlotte’s Sycamore Brewing and Triple C Brewing both took home some hardware.
I likened the event to the Super Bowl, but of course that’s a bit of hyperbole. Seeing our hometown brewers win wouldn’t be like watching the Carolina Panthers hoist the Lombardi Trophy. Rather, it’s more like knowing Cam Newton or Luke Kuechly before they were national names.
And that’s how I always feel whenever breweries from Charlotte or across North Carolina win medals, whether at the Great American Beer Festival or any other awards ceremony. There’s a sense of pride in watching the people who you’ve seen working hard for years being recognized for their efforts. I’m never surprised to hear of these breweries winning (here in Charlotte, for example, we knew how good NoDa Brewing’s Hop, Drop ‘n Roll was before it won a gold medal at last year’s World Beer Cup), but that doesn’t make it any less exciting.
So I got to live vicariously through these breweries during the awards ceremony earlier, when I heard Sycamore Brewing win a bronze in the American Style Light Lager category for their Southern Girl Lager. Shortly thereafter, their neighbors at Triple C Brewing won a bronze in the Strong American Pale Ale category for their 3C IPA.
North Carolina on the whole represented well this year, with breweries from the Old North State taking home eight medals total. In addition to the aforementioned two, the following breweries won for these beers:
- Fonta Flora Brewery Beets, Rhymes and Life won gold in the Field Beer category.
- Duck-Rabbit Brewery Märzen won bronze in the German-Style Märzen category.
- Duck-Rabbit Baltic Porter won bronze in the Baltic-Style Porter category.
- Wicked Weed Brewing Pernicious won silver in the American-Style India Pale Ale category.
- Gibb’s Hundred Brewing The Guilty Party won gold in the Extra Special Bitter category.
- Raleigh Brewing The Miller’s Toll won bronze in the Imperial Stout category.