GABF 2015: A Recap

Screams and hollers, fist pumps and high fives, and an extraordinary amount of excitement made up the 2015 Great American Beer Festival Awards Ceremony. It felt like the oscars but better!

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This past weekend was the Great American Beer Festival which did turn out to be bigger, beerier, and better! Though I said I would be prepared this year, walking into the large festival hall, I felt lost in the wealth of energy put into this event.

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The addition of 90,000 square feet meant getting lost a couple times πŸ™‚ It also meant lots of new things to check out. The Meet the Brewers section was great because there were representatives from the brewery at their station at all times so you were able to get answers about the beer straight from the source.

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The Art of Craft Beer was a new addition this year that had local artists painting their depiction of a particular craft beer. This painting inspired by the Escape to Colorado IPA from Epic Brewing was looking pretty cool on Friday!

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Hop the Vote took place at the Colorado Brewers Guild booth where you could vote on the best beer: Senate Shout Out Stout brewed by the CO State Senate and Cannonball Creek Brewing or The Ayes Have it Aye-PA brewed by the CO House of Representatives and Big Choice Brewing. My vote, as well as apparently the majority vote, was for the Senate Shout Out Stout, a mocha stout with dark chocolate and locally roasted coffee!! πŸ˜€

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The CO State Senate and Cannonball Creek Brewing won!

I did not make it to any of the Sit & Sip or You Be the Judge sessions but as far as I saw, there was definitely people dribbling in to either join in these sessions or check out the artists.

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Though I felt out of sorts a couple times, I do not think I ever looked this out of place…lol. Many festival goers come in their best costumes, which is always entertaining!

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The Awards Ceremony was definitely something to see! I am glad my new friends Casey and Conner over at Brewski Reviewski encouraged me to go. It was hard to keep track of all the awards being given while taking photos but here is a full list of winners. The breweries to get the most awards were Firestone (CA), Sun King (IN), Port City (VA), and our very own Left Hand (CO)!

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A “Few” of the Tasty Beers I tried at GABF:

Tart of Darkness by the Bruery

Feral One and Sour Opal by Firestone

Black Widow Russian Imperial by Coachella Brewing

VerrΓΌckt Weizen by LadyFace Ale

Don Vanuchi Imperial Stout by Barley Browns

Pinedrops IPA by Deschutes

Bacon & Eggs Coffee Imperial Porter by Port Brewing

Bam Biere Farmhouse Ale and Biere de Mars French Style Stock Ale by Jolly Pumpkin

Flanders Drive by Green Flash

Return of Sassy IPA by Three Weav3rs

Fayston Maple Imperial Stout and Sip of Sunshine IPA by Lawson’s

Columbus Creeper Imperial IPA by Columbus Brewing

Utopias by Samuel Adams

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Bronze Winner: Altbier from Liquid Mechanics

Overall this year’s GABF was a ton of fun! The additional space allowed for easier maneuvering but it definitely still got crowded towards the end. I love that they brought in the new aspect of local artists inspired by craft beer. Craft beer is definitely an art and that includes the brewing of the beer, the clever name, and label art. The Meet the Brewers was the best new addition. This will help to bring back craft beer enthusiasts who may have steered away from GABF due to the lack of personal interaction with breweries.

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Utopias!

Though it was a crazy busy week, I am already feeling excited for next year! I may never be fully prepared for this huge annual event but I can continue to get better! πŸ™‚

Cheers!

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Bacon and Eggs won a bronze medal

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Brews or Bust (Check out brewsorbust.com)

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10 am Awards Ceremony Beer

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 photo b67a6658-293d-45c4-892b-7c08804511c6_zpss3fyv2by.jpgFirestone wins 2 gold medals, 2 bronze medals, and 1 silver medal[/caption]

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Black Widow by Coachella Valley Brewing

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Fat Head’s Brewery and Saloon getting high fives!

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The educational section to learn about beer ingredients

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Pizza Port won 5 Bronze Medals

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More To Love:

Big Beers Festival

Big Beers Festival

Peanut Butter Stout

Peanut Butter Stout

Russian River

Russian River

The Big Eat

The Big Eat

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8 responses to “GABF 2015: A Recap

    • Tart of Darkness is delicious πŸ™‚ That is for sure!! I feel like I missed so much but it is hard to keep to a route and schedule! I really liked the Sour Opal. What day(s) were you there?

      • Ya but even that is tiring! I went Friday evening and half of Saturday afternoon and was already feeling worn out (I did have a busy week too) but it is impossible to try everything you want it seems! #firstworldproblems lol

  1. Thanks so much for sharing – firing me up for next year!!! We really wanted to attend this year, but with the move to Florida and starting a new job it was not possible. So GABF 2016 it will be!

    We have the Shelton Brothers Beer Fest coming to town in October and so going to that one – going to attend one of the multiple sessions available.

    Happy Day – Enjoy – Cheers πŸ™‚

    • Hi Renee-

      Yay! I’m excited! We will have to plan to meet for a beer when you are here?! I did not know you moved all the way to Florida- big move! Where are you at? At least you got yummy Cigar City if you’re near Tampa πŸ™‚

      I bet the Shelton Brothers Beer Fest will be awesome! If you like sour and funky beers you should try to attend What the Funk?! when you are in town next year for GABF!

      Cheers!

      • I am so up for that and would love to meet you πŸ™‚

        I will have to put What the Funk? to my to do list. Love sours! Funky I am willing to try – I recently tried a smoked bacon sour beer – a little too FUNKY though – ha!

        We are in the Tampa Bay area and loving the beer scene here. We have a list of breweries to check out and slowly checking them off. Here is the link to my Tampa Bay Area Brews Page – Enjoy πŸ™‚ https://cravesadventure.wordpress.com/tampa-bay-area-brews/

        We have a Hofbrauhaus in St. Pete now. I have been to the one in Las Vegas.

        Cheers My Friend!!!

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