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Great American Beer Fest

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Here is link where you can find the winners at the GABF.
I know taste is a relative thing, but these judges and I strongly disagree in several areas.
What do you all think?
http://www.beertown.com/

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  1. I see your point. Don't undersatnd how the following make any serious "best of" list:

    Miller

    Mickey's Malt Liquor
    Red Dog
    Miller High Life
    Icehouse
    Milwaukee's Best Light

    Pabst

    Old Milwaukee Light
    Pabst Blue Ribbon

    I just don't see it.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Chinon00

      I had a problem with the APA's.
      While I haven't tasted any of the top 3, I can't imagine how Alpha King is left out. Alpha King tops most list of APA's.
      Maybe I'm just biased as it's my favorite beer.
      The beers you mentioned should compete in the swill category.
      Makes me question the legitimacy of the process, although there are sure a lot of participating breweries.

      1. re: Bobfrmia

        There are lots of fine APAs in the US, and the judges must reduce it to three. It's easy to see how a beer, even as good a beer as Alpha King, could not make the cut. And by the way, do you know if it was entered?

      2. re: Chinon00

        Technically those are best within the styles catagories that they were entered in, not a best of list. Read what the styles are and their specifications (links on the right side) and you just may see it. http://www.beertown.com/events/gabf/g...

      3. Certain catagories were created to allow the types of beer that the big guys make to win some medals (after all they are big sponsers of the GABF, so its only fair...;). But all the beers are judged through a blind tasting and by beer writers, brewers, and other industry folk with experience.

        And one thing to remember not all beers made in the US are automatically entered. Not all brewers participate for one reason or another, and those that do, usually don't enter every beer they make.

        1 Reply
        1. re: LStaff

          Since it's the Great American Beer Festival, it's only right to include the American light lagers. After all, they're the dominant beer style in the US.

        2. Let me use an absurd analogy. What if this were the Great American "Rib" Fest? Would we actually have a category that could be populated and won by say, Chili’s Baby Back Ribs? I guess you could have “Texas” style, “Carolina” style, “Kansas City” style and finally the “Chain/Food-Court” style.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Chinon00

            If the organizers of the event deem that is necessary to include other catagories of ribs, that is there perogitive.

            I don't see anything wrong with inclusion of all styles of beer in a beer competition (although I will admit some of those lighter/wheat styles may be redundant). Judging beer is so subjective anyway, so I wouldn't take it all too seriously, its just a fun way to recognize US brewers and a marketing tool for the winners.

            1. re: LStaff

              I strenuously disagree with you. Do you really consider them to be noteworthy styles? What motivates say a Stone or Victory or Dogfish Head is far different from what motivates a Miller or A/B. Contests (to me) should reward and recognize brewers who are primarily interested in making great beer and not those engaged in producing mass market, mass consumption, pseudo-style beer.

          2. The point that I think you are missing is that beer competitions judge beers in a variety of style categories. The BJCP guidelines have 23 primary categories and a myriad of sub-categories.

            Light American Lager, for example, is one of the sub categories. Since there aren't many (if any) craft brewers brewing that style, by default the winner is going to be one of the macro brewers.

            Whether you consider it to be noteworthy or not is not relevant. I don't consider the style to be noteworthy either but I recognize it as a legitimate category. Just not one I care to consume.

            In any event, this thread is getting far off track. It would make more sense to focus on the interesting beers as opposed to debating whether certain categories should be included. Nobody in the craft beer world cares who wins the Premium American Lager category so why should we?

            2 Replies
            1. re: brentk

              You're right. Getting back on message, one thing about the list that surprised me was the number of brew pub chains that were recognized (assuming everything listed as a "restaurant and brewery" is a brew pub chain). I've enjoyed Iron Hill for years and am glad to see them get some national publicity. I've never been a fan of Rock Bottom (King of Prussia, PA) but maybe quality and styles vary from location to location.

              1. re: Chinon00

                There's a discussion of brewpub chains here:

                http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...