Pelican Brewing and Lompoc Brewing Celebrate Great American Beer Festival Medals

Two of Oregon’s old guard, veteran breweries Pelican Brewing and Lompoc Brewing are celebrating winning medals at the 2018 Great American Beer Festival last Saturday in Denver, Colorado. Oregon brewers won 22 medals (full recap and photos here) at GABF, the most competitive and recognized beer festival in the U.S. that awarded a total of 306 medals to 280 breweries out of over 8,496 entries from 2,404 breweries. Both 22-year old breweries founded in ’96 – Lompoc Brewing claimed a much deserved Gold Medal for their Lomporter Premium Northwest Porter as did Pelican Brewing’s Silver Medal for their Sunspot IPA. Both beers have been underrecognized and hopefully this will shine a spotlight on them to gain more prominence.

Lomporter won gold in the Robust Porter category, out of a total of 91 entries. This marks the second GABF medal win for Lompoc; the Portland brewery took home a silver for its classic Proletariat Red in 2015.

“We are honored to win a gold medal for Lomporter, especially with so many entries in the category,” stated Lompoc owner Jerry Fechter. “We just introduced this beer to the market last year, and it’s already a pub favorite.”

Lomporter is a classic robust porter that offers a creamy taste of dark chocolate complemented by dark cherry and hints of coffee. Brewed with dark wheat, rauch, and chocolate malts, this beer strikes a fine balance between heavy and light. It’s robust enough to sip, but smooth enough to have another. It comes in at 6.4 percent ABV and is available in 12-oz. cans and on draft.

“The Lompoc team works extremely hard and we are honored to receive a gold at GABF for Lomporter,” exclaimed head brewer Bryan Keilty. “The GABF is an amazing event and reminds us how proud we are to be a part of the Northwest beer community.”

Silverspot IPA returns from the vault with its brilliant gold color, toasty biscuit-like flavor and assertively complex hop aroma. Pelican brewers selected the blend of Sterling, Fuggle and Meridian hops, focusing on herbal, floral, spicy and tangerine-like characters to create this highly drinkable English-style IPA:

ABV: 6%   |  IBU: 55   |  PLATO: 13.7º

“I’m so proud of the staff and teamwork we have at Pelican Brewing Company—this is such a fantastic recognition of all the hard work that everyone here at Pelican does day after day,” said Darron Welch, founding Brewmaster at Pelican Brewing Company.  “Silverspot is such a delicious IPA and winning a third silver medal for it at the Great American Beer Festival just takes that success to a whole different level.”

Welch continues to be one of the most decorated brewers in the Pacific Northwest, earning well over 450 medals including several Gold Medals this year alone at the World Beer Cup, Australian International Beer Awards and North American Beer Awards.

“The 32nd edition of the GABF competition yielded a remarkable turnout of the country’s most exemplary beers,” said Chris Swersey, competition manager, Great American Beer Festival. “I’m continuously impressed by contenders’ talent and passion and would like to extend congratulations to this year’s winners for their excellence in brewing.”

Samurai Artist
Samurai Artist

Founder of The New School and most frequent contributor Ezra Johnson-Greenough has worked in the craft beer industry for almost 10 years, doing everything from illustrating beer labels to bartending at renowned beer bars and breweries like Belmont Station, Apex, Laurelwood and Upright Brewing. He has also had a hand in creating events like the Portland Fruit Beer Festival, Portland Beer Week, and the Brewing up Cocktails series. He is available for freelance consultation in marketing, events, graphic design and branding. Contact: