Local breweries win at the Great American Beer Festival

Steve Sloan was showing his Roundabout Brewery to a group from the Society of Environmental Journalists Saturday evening when someone asked if the brewery had indeed just won a silver medal at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver. 

Yes, the brewer said with characteristic modesty, noting that his Heini’s Good Cheer had won a silver medal in the Old Ale or Strong Ale category, in which it was one of 43 entries. He kindly warned the nearly 30 journalists from all over the world that he didn’t have any of that beer on hand, but as for the recognition, “We’ll take it.”

Other regional brewers won some bling at the big beer competition, including the North Side’s Penn Brewery, which won gold for its Penn Gold, appropriately enough, in the Munich-Style Helles category (105 entries). 

Rivertowne Pour House’s JFP, won bronze for Robust Porter (97 entries) and North Versaille’s Full Pint Brewing Co.’s Night of the Living Stout won bronze for American-Style Stout (60 entries). 

Perennial award-winner Fat Head’s, which started in Pittsburgh and now brews in Northeast Ohio, took gold in German-Style Wheat Ale (41 entries) for AlpenGlow brewed by Fat Head’s Brewery & Saloon in North Olmsted, Ohio, and bronze in American-Style Black Ale (54 entries) for Midnight Moonlight brewed by Fat Head’s Brewery in Middleburg Heights, Ohio.

Medals were awarded for the best examples of 161 different beer styles in 98 beer categories. Winners were chosen out of 7,923 competition entries from 2,217 breweries in 50 states plus Washington, D.C.

True to form, Mr. Sloan didn’t initially tweet about his own win, but congratulated Penn, Rivertowne, Full Pint and Fat Head’s on theirs.  

Other regional brewers and beer fans joined in the congrats and the love. Full Pint tweeted, “Thanks you to all of our friends for the support. We couldn’t be happier right now on our #GABF medal win. Cheers!”

For a full list of winners, visit www.greatamericanbeerfestival.com/the-competition/winners

Bob Batz Jr.: bbatz@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1930 and on Twitter @bobbatzjr.


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