Great American Beer Festival

Craft Beer Tour 2018: Denver

These photos were taken Saturday evening at Colorado Plus Brew Pub, Goldspot Brewing and Blind Faith/DeSteeg Brewing, September 22, which was day six of my Craft Beer Tour 2018.

Like last year, I spent my days in Denver at the home of one of my nephews; so when I finished GABF Saturday afternoon, we went out to see what new craft breweries we could find in Denver. Our first stop would be Colorado Plus Brew Pub and Taphouse, because they are a brewpub and we both wanted food.

I first visited Colorado Plus almost exactly two years ago; but circumstances being what they were, I don’t think I even walked past their dog friendly patio. As we did not have any dogs with us, we sat at the bar. Continue reading

2018 Great American Beer Festival – Day Three

These photos were taken during session one on Saturday, September 22, which was day six of my Craft Beer Tour 2018 and day three of the Brewer Association’s 2018 Great American Beer Festival (GABF) which is being held at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver.

After leaving the 2018 GABF Awards at the Bellco Theatre I headed over to the first of Saturday’s two sessions, which had probably been going on for a half-hour. My goal was simple; try some medal winning beers and get photos of those that I had yet to see during the prior two days; mission accomplished. Continue reading

2018 Great American Beer Festival Awards Ceremony

These photos were taken Saturday morning at the Brewers Association GABF Awards ceremony, which was held in the Bellco Theatre at the Colorado Convention Center.

There were over 100 categories, consisting of over 8,800 entries from 2,400 breweries. One of the new categories, Hazy IPA, had the most entries which was the first time in many years that the IPA category did not have most entries. I guess they are here to stay.

You can find all the 2018 GABF medal winners on the Brewers Association website. Congratulations to all the winners. Cheers! Continue reading

2018 Great American Beer Festival – Day Two

These photos were taken Friday, September 21, which was day five of my Craft Beer Tour 2018 and day two of the Brewer Association’s 2018 Great American Beer Festival (GABF) which is being held at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver.

Friday began with a Media Brewery Tour, which was put on by Discover Denver. We visited three Denver breweries to give newcomers to Denver an idea of the scope of the craft beer revolution in Denver. We visited Oskar Blues new Denver location, Oskar Blues Grill & Brew, the new Odell Brewing RiNo Brewhouse, and Call to Arms Brewing. Continue reading

2018 Great American Beer Festival – Day One

These photos were taken Thursday, September 20, which was day four of my Craft Beer Tour 2018 and day one of the 2018 Great American Beer Festival (GABF) which is being held at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver.

My day started off at the Jameson VIP Tasting which was held at The 360 at Skyline. The event was held to introduce Jameson’s Caskmates, two new versions of Jameson. These whiskeys were aged in barrels that had previously been used to age beer. They offered us samples of their standard Jameson, followed up with the stout and IPA versions. The event continued up on the rooftop of The 360 at Skyline, where we were treated to cocktails, beer, food, and a great panoramic view of the city. When the attendees were done there, we were given a tuk tuk ride to the convention center so that we arrived just in time for session one of GABF 2018. Continue reading

Craft Beer Tour 2018: Arizona

These photos were taken Monday, September 17, in Kingman and Flagstaff, Arizona.

On Monday I left the South Bay to head to Denver for the Great American Beer Festival. If you followed my journey to GABF last year you may recall that I traveled through Utah to get there. The lack of breweries on that route ensured that I take the southern route through Arizona this time. Day one was much better this year.

My first gas stop was in Kingman, AZ, which was about 330 miles from home using I-40. It has been a while since I was in Kingman, but it is a big enough town that I figured there had to be a brewery there. Google informed me that Black Bridge Brewery was only a couple miles from the gas station I was at, so I set it in my GPS for a seven minute drive. Continue reading

The Craft Beer Guy 2017 Year in Review

As the year draws to a close, it is time to think back on what 2017 has brought to the craft beer world; more specifically what has happened in the Craft Beer Guy world. As 2016 came to a pretty crappy end for me, I did not do one last year; for that reason, I will begin with the end of 2016 as it segued into 2017.

steelcraft soft open

Smog City – Steelcraft – Bixby Knolls

My coverage of 2016 ended pretty much the way 2017 started, with the opening of Smog City Brewing Company’s satellite tasting room, Smog City – SteelCraft in the Bixby Knolls area of Long Beach. They opened the location at the end of December; by the middle of January they had applied for, and were granted the ability to sell growlers and bottles to go.

Later in January the inaugural L.A. Beer and Food Festival was presented by the Los Angeles County Brewers Guild. The sold-out event featured close to 50 member breweries of the LA Brewers Guild as well as 15 local food vendors. This year the L.A. Beer and Food Festival will be held Saturday, January 27. Buy your tickets now, before it sells out.

Just a bit of trivia; while there were about 50 LA County Brewers Guild members in January of 2017, today there are almost 70! Continue reading

Craft Beer Tour 2017: West Michigan

These photos are of the breweries I visited in Michigan; in order, they were Founders Brewing (two visits), Bell’s Brewery, New Holland Brewing, Our Brewing, Rockford Brewing, Perrin Brewing, Elk Brewing, and Greyline Brewing Company.

After driving back and forth between Grand Rapids and Detroit, in the pouring rain, and another four hours of technical work, I was ready for Craft Beer Tour 2017 to get back on course. First stop would be the Founders Brewing taproom.

As we were pulling off the freeway it was easy to spot the huge red brick building with “Founders Brewing” emblazoned with yellow letters. As we were parking I could not but help notice the fermenters in the windows; they appeared to be three stories tall, but I could not see clearly enough to see where their feet were. I hoped I would have a good view of the brewhouse, because it looked a little too busy for me to ask for a quick personal tour like I do at the smaller breweries. Continue reading

GABF Day 3, Session 1 Photos

These photos were taken Saturday afternoon during the first session of the 2017 Great American Beer Festival, which was presented by the Brewers Association.

After the awards ceremony everyone headed upstairs for the first session of day three, which would have two sessions. Continue reading

2017 Great American Beer Festival Awards Ceremony Photos

These photos were taken Saturday morning at the 2017 Great American Beer Festival Awards which was held in the Mile High Ballroom at the Colorado Convention Center. The awards ceremony is the highlight of the three day event put on by the Brewers Association.

This year’s competition featured 7,923 entries from 2,217 breweries in 50 states and Washington, D.C. The competition took place in six sessions over a period of three days and was judged by 276 beer experts from 13 countries. In addition to commercial brewery entries, the judging panel also evaluated 118 Pro-Am entries. The competition was made possible with the help of 365 volunteers. Continue reading

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