The Weekly Taps: 3/31-4/4

This is the new weekly-ish column aptly named The Weekly Taps presented by Taplister where I compile new draft beers on around town, where to find them or when they are being tapped. 
The focus is on brand new beers to the market with occasional special or noteworthy releases also included.

If your a brewer, bartender, pub/restaurant owner and would like to keep me informed of your new beers available then email me at: SamuraiArtist1 at

This week the majority of cool new beers are on downtown over at Bailey's Taproom, consistently they have kept the lineup interesting.
As far as the most interesting beers we have selections from The Bruery showing up around town. The aptly named Bruery is from Orange County and makes a lot of experimental and farmhouse/belgian styles of beer with unique ingredients. You rarely see them on draft in Oregon and bottles are spendy so they are definitely worth seeking out.
The other brewery of note is the new Gilgamesh Brewing located just outside of Salem, OR and they will be making their Portland debut at the Spring Beer & Wine Fest this Friday and Saturday at the Convention Center. They also make beers with unique ingredients like the Black Mamba a gruit style of beer with no hops and instead using black tea and tangerine zest.

All the taps around town after the page break...

Google Gigabit IPA from Hopworks

So last night (3/30) our friends at Taplister - namely CBO Kerry Finsand - announced a new beer named in honor of Google for the Portland market called Gigabit India Pale Ale and produced at Hopworks Urban Brewery.

If you haven't been following the Tech News, Google is prepping a new experiment that will provide households in several chosen cities 1 Gigabit per second broadband speeds to up to 500,000 homes, which is approximately 100 times faster than average internet speeds in America. Many cities from across the country have been lobbying for Google's attention so that they may be chosen as the host city for this program, and Portland, OR is one of them. 1,100 cities are competing for the Google Fiber investment, many in outlandish acts to get Google's attention. Portland is no different in lobbying Hopworks to create a Google beer. One cannot deny that this is a great way to communicate the PDX community's priorities and values; what better way than beer? I have always thought that beer is the best tool to bring people and communities together, and this is the perfect example of that.

More after the break...

Fucking Hell, Beer

In the western region of upper Austria, in the municipality of Tarsdorf, exists a small village famous for only one thing, its name of 800 years - "Fucking".
In previous years the town of Fucking has fought its notoriety after their most famous landmarks, the town's 4 road signs, were constantly being stolen by British tourists. The town weighted them down with concrete and even installed CCTV cameras to dissuade thieves, but to no avail....
The most famous sign features a smaller lower sign with an illustration of 2 children and says:
"Bitte — nicht so schnell!", which translates from German into English as "Please — not so fast!"

In 2005 the town considered changing its name, but ultimately decided to keep it because of its long history. At that time the villages Police Chief Kommandant Schmidtberger said
"...we will not stand for the Fucking signs being removed. It may be very amusing for you British, but Fucking is simply Fucking to us. What is this big Fucking joke? It is puerile."
You can't make this stuff up, folks.

So you may be wondering why I am writing about this on The New School, as we are a beer blog after all. Well guess what, a clever brewer has decided to brew a beer in honor of the town...and why the Fucking Hell not....

New Brew Odyssey: Portland Beer Apocalypse?

[We are pleased to present the first article by new columnist Ben Edmunds of Oregon Beer Odyssey and Breakside Brewing who will be writing primarily on new developments in the craft beer industry]

I moved to Portland two years ago because of the beer scene. Like many other transplants, I was at first wowed and never disappointed (still haven’t been!) by the city’s beer life. As a beer geek, it is all too easy here for me to find myself scheduling my weeks around upcoming beer releases, bar events, and meet the brewer nights. But, I am now starting to fear for the future of our city’s breweries and brewpubs. It is not some impending hop crisis, excise tax, or neo-Prohibitionist frenzy that loom’s on Beervana’s horizon, but a more straightforward economic force: market saturation.
By my count, there are eleven breweries and brewpubs that have either very recently opened or plan to open in the next months within the city limits. These include some that Ezra has already featured here at the New School—Mt. Tabor over in Montavilla, whose beer is now pouring at the Canton Grill; Solstice Brewing, which will be in the Woodstock area; and the increasingly mysterious Occidental Brewing—as well as Breakside (where I’ll be brewing along with Sean White from Upright and Tony Petraglia), the American Flatbread location that’s opening on the fringe of the Pearl District, and North Portland’s Rivergate Brewing on Lombard that is now pouring its own brews. And let’s not forget that Lucky Lab just opened a new beer hall; Cascade’s East Side Barrel Room will be open this summer, and the Green Dragon recently posted a job opening for a full-time brewer. I could go on...

Review Panel: Oakshire O:Dark'30 Cascadian Dark Ale

This review has been a long time coming. Typically we feature 3 different reviewers but Captain Neil, manager of Belmont Station has flaked out on us after promising to deliver his review over a week ago so now so I am publishing this with just 2 reviews.

Anyway Oakshire broke new ground with this beer by being the first bottled beer officially named a Cascadian Dark Ale. Kudos to them on that and for more thoughts on the style, Matt Van Wyk Head Brewer at Oakshire wrote up a great blog post about CDA's and why he supports them over Black IPA's, check out his great writeup here that references my CDA post here.

On to the reviews after the break...

Seattle Adventuring

 Part 2 of a new weekly Column

Last weekend my partner Amy and I got a mini-vacation in Seattle, with the express purpose of hitting up a couple of our favorite bars. Hard Liver Barleywine Festival was on Saturday at Brouwer's, and getting up there the day before allowed us to hang out a bit with some friends before the festival.

After an easy rush hour trip through Tacoma, we pulled into Seattle and checked into our motel, where as luck would have it, we got upgraded to the suite, with a lovely view of the adult video store below. I unwound from being cooped up in the car with a can of Oskar Blue's Gordon and screwed around with my iPhone, happily discovering that Brouwer's was less than a mile away...

Sasquatch Legacy Project Beer Release tonight @ the Horse Brass

This Friday 3/26 430pm is the annual Sasquatch Legacy Project beer release party at the Horse Brass. If your not familiar with the Legacy Project it is part of the Glen Hay Falconer Foundation which is non-profit dedicated to helping advance the education of brewers and supporting the causes that late great brewer Glen Hay Falconer loved.

Every year they award scholarships to two lucky brewer sto the Siebel Institute and those brewers then brew the Sasquatch Legacy Project brew at Walking Man in Stevenson, WA. Bob Craig, owner of Walking Man is the founder of the project and organizes the event and donations for each years beer.
More info on this years Legacy beer after the break....

Apex: Updates

Quick post.
The other day I popped into the highly anticipated Apex space on 12th and SE Division. This is the new beer bar under construction by Jessie "the Beer Guy" that I broke the news on awhile ago. Read that post here. Apex will feature 50 taps and lots of bottles. I know everyone wants to know about an opening date and Jessie would love to see it open by the end of April, but it has not been inspected or approved by the various agencies yet so I would suspect you wont see them open until atleast May.

More info and pics after the jump!

Beer Around Town/The Weekly Taps

The first of a semi-weekly writeup of new beers on tap around Portland. I really really wanted to call this Beer Around Town but Derek has already grabbed that title for his excellent blog so for now it will be called The Weekly Taps.

Every Wednesday or Thursday I plan to post a list of all the newest beers tapping in PDX. These will focus on  the seasonal and one-off beers that are rarely talked about or hyped up and come and go sometimes without anyone ever noticing. I will also mention rare or unique beers. In the future I hope to make this post downloadable and printable as a pdf. for handy reference and it is all brought to you by Taplister.
This week we have new beers from: Alameda, Walking Man, Upright, Old Market, Laurelwood, Mcmenamins, Bear Republic and more.

Let me first recommend everyone try Alameda's new Pilsner/Pale Ale hybrid on tap now called Fixed Gear and the new Sasquatch Legacy Project beer from Walking Man on Friday at the Horse Brass.

The new trending beer style would seem to be chili brews made with hot peppers. They seem to be making a comeback. Personally I find them love or hate beers, some end up picking up a green vegetable flavor and some meld wonderfully with the beer such as Roots Calypso (scotch bonnet peppers and apricots) from a few years ago and Upright Brewing's recent Fatali Four (fruity Fatali peppers) and Turkey On Rye (Turkish Chili's). Looking forward to trying these new additions...

Review: Sierra Nevada 30th Anniversary Fritz and Ken's Ale

For their 30th Anniversary Sierra Nevada is collaborating with 4 different greats of the craft beer industry on 4 different beers each released in limited caged and corked 750ml bottles.
The first of these, a collaboration with craft beer pioneer Fritz Maytag of Anchor Brewing is out and it is an Imperial Stout. Combing the internets there is no info on this specific beer I can find, just on the series as a whole. I did find this great video with all of the participants that will fill you in...

Cheese/Beer/Life: After the Ides of March

[Editors note: This is the 2nd post in a new weekly column Cheese/Beer/Life focusing on the relationship between beer and cheeses. For Part 1 go here]

Welcome back!

My personal Ides of March have come and gone! Perhaps now that the tumult of this column's introduction is a memory, we all can embrace the Spring with levity: weather, beer, cheese, and whatnot. Those of you residing in Portland have certainly noticed Spring’s arrival; last Thursday and Friday seemed preface for the beautiful warm Saturday dropped into our laps and the official start of Spring. Accordingly, I decided to focus on a seasonal style of beer: brown ales. Whether or not we believe brown ales bespeak Spring, it is undeniable that retail beer shelves clamor with seasonal brown ales this time of year.

Racer 5 vs. Red Racer

Last month word got out that Healdsburg, CA brewery Bear Republic was suing Vancouver B.C. based brewery Central City Brewing.
Bear Republic alleges that Central Citys Red Racer India Pale Ale is infringing on their trademark Racer 5 IPA and their Red Rocket by causing confusion between the brands so much so that customer, retailers and even a beer writer have been confused. The full Lawsuit here (pdf)

Thanks to Vancouver, BC CAMRA editor Ryan O'Connor I obtained a can of Red Racer India Pale Ale from vancouver because it is not distributed on the west coast so that I can judge this lawsuit the only way that matters, by a taste off!

In the interest of keeping it simple I will be comparing Red Racer to only Racer 5 and not Red Rocket.

First lets look at the similarities between these 2 beers:
Admittedly Red Racer and Racer 5 have a lot of samilarities, to begin with sharing half of their name in common, but when the whole name is only 2 words thats not saying a lot. And of course they are both IPA's.
BR states Red Racer has “the similarities of words, fonts and colors”, they have a point there, the font is very similar and they both use a lot of red and yellow in the labels. The Red Racer label though features an attractive redhead in a skirt and stockings on a Red Racer bicycle and the Racer 5 label focuses on a simple "5" in a circle. The biggest difference though is that Red Racer is only in cans and Racer 5 only in bottles.

Here is where I really call bullshit on this lawsuit though. Because I think BR's Racer 5 is an obvious homage/rip-off of another very famous media property, you may already know what I am referring too...

SF Adventures Part 2: Zeitgeist, Toronado and more!

This is Part 2 of my chronicle of the trip I took last month to San Francisco for SF Beer Week the Toronado Barleywine Fest and to catch up with old friends. In which I drink way too much and visit 2 of my 3 favorite bars in the world and many many many more stops and beers inbetween.

Read the first part of my chronicles as a primer, or not, it doesnt really matter:
Part 1

Continue on to Part 2 of the trip below...

Beer Lovers Unite for the Brewpublicrawl Saturday 3/20

Sour beer lovers, this Saturday is not to be missed.
Our friends at great beer blog Brewpublic have put together an epic pub crawl this Saturday 3/20 from 12-6pm down SE Division street and if Double Mountain, Lompoc, Full Sail, Hopworks, Ft. George, Beer Valley and Barley Browns arent enough then the best local brewery not technically in Oregon, Walking Man has been added to the last stop of the crawl at newish bottle shop The Beermongers.

Roots 5 Years and counting

Friday March 19 Roots 5 Year Anniversary Party

Roots Organic Brewing in Portland, OR is a landmark in the Portland beer scene as far as I am concerned. In addition to being the first all organic brewery in Portland they also have led the way in trying new things with experimental beers that have hit the mark far more often then not.
I would say they have been the most underrated brewery in the state and one of my Top 5 but it has not quite been the same since co-founder and Head Brewer Jason Mcadam parted ways with owner Craig Nicholls to pursue his own brewery the upcoming Alchemy Brewing.

Jason Mcadam created some truly great beers like the Scotch Bonnet pepper and Apricot wheat beer a couple years ago for the Oregon Brewers Festival that was amazing and I still have cravings for, the only thing coming close being Uprights Fatali Four.
The Gruit Kolsch is always a great summer beer but not as good as it used to be. The Gruit, made with no hops but chamomile, lavender, pink peppercorns and other things I am forgetting is a great refreshing slightly herbal beer that really is quite quenching.  And how can you forget the Chocolate Habanero Stout?

More on the Anniversary Party and the new beer to commemorate the 5th year below...

Cascadian Dark Ale: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The Cascadian Dark Ale movement has been getting a lot of traction lately, with many of the local bloggers and writers supporting the style (with the exception of Beervana), along with more and larger breweries creating and bottling their own versions.

Now comes news that the TTB has asked one of the only bottled examples in Portland, Hopworks: Secession, to remove the flag of Cascadia from their label. I almost don't know where to go with this post - I could go with how absurd and ambiguous TTB's alcohol packaging guidelines are, or the harm this move does to the CDA movement.

If that isn't news enough, I also have info that the Brewers Association will be officially recognizing the emerging style, but with much more vague guidelines of what they can be and a new much more politically correct term for the beers, neither Black Ipa nor CDA. More on this later in the post...

Cheese/Beer/Life a new column by James Blum

                                          (Blue cheese and Beer painting by Timothy Jones)

To me, cheese and beer are like earth and water. They are fundamental, even mundane, staples in the lives of most people, yet they variously convey as much diversity, nuance and complexity as the land can offer and the palate can discover. Whether beautifully stark and simple, like a fresh well-made Czech Pils, or esoteric and palate-bending, such as an aged Spanish sheep’s milk cheese, beer and cheese ceaselessly speak to my senses and instruct them in topics of beauty and potential, clarity and depth. My intention is not to overstate. But, to me, the joy I experience as I try to appreciate beers and cheeses alone, only multiplies as I try to pair them together and discover how they interact.
As for logistics, my name is Jimmy and I am a home-beer-and-mead-maker and a (very) amateur cheese-maker. I eat cheese and drink beer every day; I am an enthusiast, not an expert, in the realms of craft beer and artisanal cheese. This column will be something of a log of the discoveries, trials and revelations of my palate during my everyday pairings. I am not certain how these blog posts will evolve, but I plan to write a weekly column and, when possible, to offer pairings that have some thematic cohesiveness. Most, if not all, of the beers and cheeses I write about should be available at local specialty shops in the Pacific Northwest. Here in Portland, where I live, I buy most of my beer at Belmont Station, and my cheese generally comes from Pastaworks on Hawthorne.
This week I organized my pairings along beer lines; namely, I gathered a number of west-coast style India Pale Ales and matched them with a diverse selection of cheeses that happened to pique my interest. A quick note on IPAs: Fresher is better. IPAs, in my opinion, are hop showcases. And, hop character – bitterness, flavor and aroma – is volatile and fragile and it dissipates with time. Anyway…

Introduction to a New Weekly Column by King C.

[This is the first of a few brand new weekly columns to the blog by new contributors. I am very excited to have them onboard and in reading their unique perspective on all things beer. Check back on tuesday for another new column on cheese and beer. Thanks, Ezra aka Samurai Artist]

Many of my fans are wondering why I would write for a blog/magazine called The New School, when they all know that I firmly kick it old school, but the thing is, here in Portland, change is all around--especially in the beer scene. Going to all the events, openings, tastings, contests, and brew days, between a job, non beer related hobbies, and just life in general, can be exhausting. However, we all know there is plenty of time to sleep when you are dead.

I've been a home brewer and a bartender for nineteen years, off and on. After rolling out of bed around 2 pm, and getting some caffeine in my system and maybe a little food, my brain soon starts to focus on the impetus of my existence--beer. Now, while many people may just consider this drunkenness, alcoholism, or just plain old bad living, I consider it a way to make a living. I really love beer. It's what keeps me fat and happy and also provides me with around 99% of my conversation topics. Hopefully, it will also provide you, the reader, with something semi-interesting to kill some time with.

I'm planning for this space to be a weekly column, and fairly open with the subject, as long as it is under the umbrella of beer. I may write about hops, malt, yeast or water, you'll never know until then next article comes out! In all semi-seriousness, though, my goal of this column is to be another voice of the beer community of Oregon and beyond. I want to keep the subjects as positive as possible, but I'm not afraid to get in an argument. You won't see me trash talking breweries and brewers, because I feel there is way too much awesome stuff to write about as opposed to saying "brewery x is making some really crappy brews." We all know brewery x is making crappy brews, so why bother wasting time writing about it?

I'm completely open to ideas, topics, suggestions and corrections. Despite being an arrogant know it all on the outside, inside I still am willing to learn and grow, and to see if at the very core of my existence there really is a nougatty center. The bottom line is that I want to make and serve better beer, and get people to drink better beers--raise the bar while raising pints!

Upcoming planned columns include my Hawaiian beer experience from last January, which my girl Amy has organized all of the notes for, and called back all of the places we went, to make sure what we thought happened, did. Then a blow by blow account of how the hops are growing in front of my apartment, some brewing adventures, festival exploits and many, many drunken exploits of playing follow that pint are to come. Perhaps most importantly, I plan to explain just why in the hell peanut butter beer is so delicious, and also I will learn to brew this perversion of style myself.

I look forward to hearing back from everyone sitting at the bar. If you want me to explain, rant about, or argue any beer related subject, let me know. I don't plan on stopping until beer is flowing from the Skidmore Fountain, like Henry Weinhard intended.

Also, I am adamantly opposed to citrus wedges in or around my craft beer. Thank you.

About: Staggering Toward Berhalla/Archives

King C. is a longtime fixture of the Portland beer scene having bartended and homebrewed for 19 years or so. If you make it out to the many beer fests, tastings, parties around town you have surely seen his massive presence and if you known him from one of the many beer bars he has worked at: Lucky Lab, The Green Dragon, Horse Brass then you known he is as friendly and knowledgeable as they come.

His column Staggering Toward Beerhalla will cover all kinds of beer related subjects from an everymans perspective, that is an everyman who spends every waking moment in the craft beer culture!

3/15/2010 Introductory Column

How To Brew in the New School

Mini Moon Pie Porter
The other day a group of friends, Belmont Station employees all, including frequent contributor to this blog "Swine-Flu" Jimmy, "Captain" Neil Yandow and Lucas "The Shotgun" Worley came over to my house to inagaurate my new brew kettle and burner with a very unique homebrew that I would say is a perfect example of The New School of brewing culture. After capturing some entertaining photos offhandedly of the brew session I decided to blog it.
I asked Jimmy to explain the beer and how it came about:

Mini Moon Pie Porter is the realization of a long-running joke amongst three coworkers at Belmont Station. Neil, our GM, has regular cravings for Mini Moon Pies. Mini Moon Pies are small confections consisting of a layer of marshmallow sandwiched by two soft graham crackers, all covered in chocolate. Sometimes, just to switch things up, Neil would go so far as to place a wrapped Mini Moon Pie in his pocket until it warmed up in order to add a bit of melt.
Lucas and Jimmy, always entertained by Neil's Mini Moon Pie passion, decided that Neil's diet would be augmented if he could drink mini moon pies as well as eat them. Homebrewers both, Lucas and Jimmy decided to actualize this mirthful fantasy in the form of a porter,
the perfect medium to deliver liquid Mini Moon Pie.

Review Panel: Laurelwood Espresso Stout

                                                            (Photos by "SNOB" Ritch)

Caffeinated beers are a hot subject right now, what with the possibly impending BAN on them in the state of California. I am not going to go into the ridiculousness of that because others have already covered it well but suffice it to say this is all because of alcoholic energy drinks like Sparks killing our buzz by marketing to children.
While I certainly do not condone that I am pretty sure people have been mixing coffee with alcohol for a hell of a lot longer then that with excellent results before long walks and drives home. This argument is also pretty well backed up by Laurelwood's seasonal bottle release of Organic Portland Roast Espresso Stout.

I remember this beer when it used to be made with Stumptown coffee. Not sure why they parted ways when Laurelwood began bottling this beer last year. I was reluctant at first because everyone knows of Stumptown Roastings high-quality and not so much for Portland Roasting.
Could Laurelwood pull out a win?
Lets find out as I have 3 writers review the beer separately and score it on a 0-5 scale.

Pliny The Younger Tickets For Sale!

The headline pretty much says it all. Belmont Station has decided to pre-sell tickets to buy this most over hyped of all beers Russian Rivers Pliny The Younger that I already blogged about here along with its more common uncle Pliny The Elder.
For $15 you get both beers by the glass only. 10oz I believe.
Price gouging you say? Belmont Station is going to donate half of the ticket price to Mercy Corps so maybe you feel that makes up for it a bit.
More details after the Jump!

SF Beer Adventures Part 1

This post is quite a bit late as I was in San Francisco for the tail end of SF Beer Week and the Toronado Barleywine Festival last month. With all the things going on in Portland I have been playing catch up but hopefully people are still interested.

Anyhow I made it down to San Francisco on Friday morning 2/12 to catch some of the last events of SF's killer now only 2 year old SF Beer Week that runs 2/5 to 2/14. It truly is amazing what they have done with this event in only 2 years with around 20 events taking place every day with every kind of beer imaginable. Complete with beer dinners, beer pairings, cask beer, sour beer, beer ice cream and many more.

I was very bummed I could not make it earlier but I had a choice of either a few days at the beginning or a few days at the end. I chose the end of the week because of the infamous Toronado Barleywinefest in its 17th year this year. If you havent made it down to this event and like strong beers this is an absolute must visit.

Bear Republic Hop Fest

Bear Republic from Healdsburg California has gotta be one of the most popular breweries around for their Hop Rod Rye and Racer 5. Two of the most requested beers when I worked at Belmont Station and fixtures at places like Horse Brass. They do a great job of fulfilling the taste for hops and must be credited as helping to popularize rye beer.

Mountain Peoples Distribution, one of the best local distributors and friends of the blog are producing a cool series of events with Bear Republic this week taking place over 3 days at 3 locations.
They will be have 4 beers from Bear Republic on draft including a brand new Double IPA called 11, an old IPA recipe called Five Zero and the newest entry into their single hop Rebellion series featuring Citra Hops!

Portland Beer Events March 3-6th

 Lots of beer events in the next few days and into the weekend so thought I would update everyone on some beer tastings worth attending:

Wednesday 3/3
The newest Portland Brewery Migration which opened just a week ago on NE Glisan just off of 28th and I have already been there 3 times. Though they have yet to pour their own beer until today (wednesday 3/3). The place is comfy and a good hang out spot but yet too differentiate themselves and standout. This may be our first glimpse at their future. From their website:

We are proud to annouce the debut showing of the Migration Pale Ale (MPA) this Wednesday starting at 3pm!  Come taste the first official Migration beer to pour off the taps.  The MPA is a caramel bodied pale ale that comes in about 5.5% ABV and features a well balanced hop profile that will keep you coming back for more!

Thursday 3/4...

The Idaho Statesman on CDA vs. Black IPA

Patrick Orr recently wrote an article for the Idaho Statestman titled "Black IPAs are a full-blown trend". It's an interesting write-up that calls attention to the popular new style, but not without a few hiccups and controversy about who deserves credit for creating the style. Of course, it also mentions the ever-popular Cascadian Dark Ale vs. Black IPA debate.
I highly recommend you read Mr. Orr's full article, but I also quote liberally from it below for our rebuttal.

Lucky Lab's Barleywine and Big Beer Tastival March 5th and 6th

One of my favorite beer festivals in Portland is probably one of the least known and I like it that way. The Lucky Lab: Barleywine and Big Beer Tastival has been flying relatively under the radar for awhile now and I had almost completely forgotten it was coming up this weekend March 5th and 6th until I ran into organizer of the fest and Head Brewer at Lucky Lab's NW Quimby location Ben Flerchinger the other day. 
He was kind enough to share the still a work in progress list of beers for this year. (you can expect a new offering from Upright Brewing not on the list yet).

Beer list for this years fest and my top 5 picks are below after the jump!

Beer Brawl 3 at Concordia Ale House

Once a year Concordia Ale House puts on the Beer Brawl. This is the 3rd year.
Basically its a peoples choice beer competition between Oregon, Washington and California.
You get a sampler tray of 12 beers split into 4 categories; Pale Ale, IPA, Stout and Open category or Brewers Choice where representatives choose whatever beer they wish to submit. Each category features one beer from each state, so 3 total. The public votes on their favorite beer in each category and whoever receives the most votes at the end of the week wins. Representatives from each state choose a beer from whatever style for the Brewers Choice. That category really does not work for me because the styles are all over the board and that makes it impossible to fairly pick the best.
Another complaint is that Concordia lists one category as simply IPA at the pub and on the voting cards but when I looked it up on their website they list it as Double IPA. Confusing.

So last thursday a group of us that included "SNOB" Ritch, Amy Marvin, Kerry Finsand and myself headed up to Concordia to take the challenge.
Below are our votes, tasting notes and predictions. I will update this post when the official results are released and see how close we were.