Boxing Bear Brewing Company brought home the gold and three other New Mexico breweries took silver and bronze awards at the 2016 Great American Beer Festival held in Denver.
The competion awarded 286 medals to many breweries around the United States including New Mexico’s own, Boxing Bear, Bosque Brewing Co., La Cumbre Brewing Co. and Marble Brewery on Saturday, Oct. 8. The festival ran Oct. 6 through Oct. 8.
Boxing Bear won gold in two categories. It won the highest awards for its The Red Glove in the Double Red Ale category, which had 78 entries, and its Chocolate Milk Stout in the Sweet Stout or Cream Stout category, which had 71 entries.
“We’re so happy to bring back a gold in the double red category for our entry The Red Glove,” Boxing Bear head brewer and co-owner Justin Hamilton said. “It’s a great victory for us and for New Mexico. We we’re super excited to compete in the sweet/cream stout category again this year. After our gold medal for the same beer at this year’s World Beer Cup, it feels fantastic to follow through with a gold at GABF.”
This year’s GABF competition is the largest to date. Now in its 30th year, GABF received 7,227 entries from 1,752 breweries from 50 states in 96 beer categories covering 161 different beer styles. The GABF beers were evaluated by 264 beer experts from 12 countries, including the United States. GABF one of the largest commercial beer competitions in the world, according to a news release from The Brewers Association.
Bosque also brought home two medals with its two silver for its Acequia IPA in the Fresh or Wet Hop Ale category, which had 45 entries, and its Bosque Lager in the German-Style Pilsener category, which had 115 entries. Last year, Bosque won gold for Acequia IPA and a bronze for it in 2014.
“One of our coworkers constistently calls (head brewer) John Bullard, the ‘hop whisperer,'” said Bosque co-owner and director of operations Jotham Michnovicz. “With bronze, gold and now silver for Acequia in the fresh and wet hop category, three years in a row, I’d say he’s right. A silver for Bosque Lager makes it that much sweeter! We’re stoked to put this out in cans later this month.”
Bosque also took third place in the Alpha King Challenge on Friday, Oct. 7, at GABF with its Cannon DIPA (Double India Pale Ale).
“Out of 150 hop-forward entries, both of our entries were in the top seven,” Michnovicz said.
Also bringing home medals are La Cumbre and Marble, which each received bronze.
La Cumbre won with its Siberian Silk in the Baltic-Style Porter category, which had 41 entries.
“We are very excited to come back to Albuquerque with even more ‘Heavy Medal!,'” La Cumbre founder and president Jeff Erway said.
This is not the first win for La Cumbre at GABF. It has been recognized several times, including winning bronze in 2013 for its Project Dank. It received two gold medals in 2011 for its BEER and Elevated IPA. It also won a silver that year for its Malpais Stout.
Marble also took bronze with its Pilsner in the Kellerbier or Zwickelbier category, which had 69 entries. It also has received numerous accolades at GABF in previous years. Its largest recognition was in 2014, when it was named Small Brewery and Brewmaster of the Year and won gold for its Double White and Imperial Red Ale. Last year, it received a bronze award for its Imperial Red.
“We are extremely proud of our German inspired Pilsner,” Marble president and brewmaster Ted Rice said. “The Pilsner has medaled five times between the World Beer Cup and Great American Beer Festival. It’s a consistent world class example of style.”
For the full list of winners, visit greatamericanbeerfestival.com.