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TN at GABF: Wiseacre, Yazoo, McHale’s win medals at 2014 Great American Beer Festival

October 04, 2014 By: mike Category: Breweries, Competition, Craft beer, Events, Memphis

Three Tennessee craft breweries — Memphis’ Wiseacre Brewing Company, Nashville’s Yazoo Brewing Company  and Chattanooga’s McHale’s Brewhouse — won medals today at the 2014 Great American Beer Festival in Denver.

Wiseacre Tiny BombThe festival, in its 28th year, is the largest commercial beer competition in the world. A total of 234 different breweries won either gold, silver or bronze medals in 90 beer categories covering 145 different beer styles.

Wiseacre won a bronze medal for its Tiny Bomb in the German-Style Pilsener category (75 entries). This was Wiseacre’s first year to compete at GABF.

Brothers Davin and Kellan Bartosch opened Wiseacre on Broad Avenue in 2013. Tiny Bomb, available on draft and in cans in the Memphis area, is one of the brewery’s two year-round beers, along with Ananda IPA.

“It’s great to be recognized for something that you have worked so hard on for so long, especially by my peers, the greatest beer judges in the world. Pilsner is among the most difficult styles of beer to produce and we are glad to be honored in this way. I almost cried,” brewmaster Davin Bartosch said in a press release.

Added Kellan Bartosch: “With Firestone and Russian River being the other medalist in the category as two of the most highly acclaimed breweries in the country, it says a lot about the internal admiration for Pilsner among brewers. Craft beer drinkers often stick to mega hoppy IPAs or big stouts, but external appreciation for tasty lower ABV beers is on the rise and Tiny Bomb made here in Memphis can now be considered a leader of the pack on a national scale.”

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Bronze medal for Tiny Bomb #gabf

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Meanwhile, Yazoo captured the bronze medal in the Wood- and Barrel-Aged Sour Beer category (65 entries) for its Cherry Deux Rouges, part of the Nashville brewery’s Embrace the Funk series. The medal is Yazoo’s fourth overall, having won twice for its Hefeweizen and once for Sue.

The final Tennessee winner was Chattanooga’s McHale’s Brewhouse, which won a gold medal for its Scottish Pride beer in the Scottish-Style Ale category (51 entries). It’s the first GABF win for McHale’s Brewhouse.

A huge congrats to all the Tennessee winners!

Atlanta’s SweetWater Brewing Co. distributing again in Chattanooga after hiatus

May 25, 2012 By: mike Category: Breweries, Craft beer

Sweetwater 420 Atlanta’s SweetWater Brewing Company announced today that it’s returning to Chattanooga with a new distribution agreement after a 3-month hiatus. Sweetwater is available in Nashville, but it’s still not in Memphis.

Here’s the press release from SweetWater:

SweetWater Brewing Company is pleased to announce its return to Chattanooga this May after a three-month-long hiatus from the market. The second-largest craft brewery in the Southeast will be bringing its brews back to its neighbors in Chattanooga, first rolling out 420 on draft, and then bringing six-packs of 420, IPA and Blue later this summer.

The return to market is a result of a new distribution agreement with the Budweiser of Chattanooga wholesaler being assigned the rights to distribute SweetWater’s lineup. The transition became official on April 20, coincidentally the anniversary date of SweetWater’s flagship 420 Extra Pale Ale and 8th annual SweetWater 420 Festival, celebrating Earth Day.

“We are thrilled to be back in Chattanooga and further serving the South” said SweetWater Brewing Company Director of Sales Dave Guender. “We’re excited about our future with Budweiser of Chattanooga as it will give us the ability to stretch our legs in this market, deliver broader coverage and more efficiently align our wholesaler network within the state of Tennessee.”

SweetWater will be rolling out 420 on draft in restaurants and pubs throughout the city followed by core styles of six-packs in the off-premise channel later this year with Chattanoogans looking for SweetWater’s lip smackin’ lineup to feature 420 Extra Pale Ale, SweetWater Blue and SweetWater IPA.

Recently named in the Top 25 craft breweries in the nation by Brewers Association, SweetWater is also recognized as an environmental advocate and a champion for clean water throughout the Southeast. Through their regional Save the Waterway campaigns partnering with Waterkeeper© Alliance members, SweetWater has donated more than $500,000 to help patrol, protect and preserve waterways throughout its markets.

With their return to Chattanooga, SweetWater hopes to continue to grow partnerships with local environmental causes, festivals and community events, in addition to serving up locals with a taste of SweetWater’s samplings. To learn more about SweetWater Brewing Company, visit www.sweetwaterbrew.com.

Boscos wins gold, Ghost River gets silver at 2011 Great American Beer Festival

October 04, 2011 By: mike Category: Breweries, Competition, Craft beer, Events, Memphis

GABFMemphis-based craft breweries Boscos and Ghost River Brewing each won a medal this weekend in Denver at the Great American Beer Festival, the world’s largest commercial beer competition.

Boscos Hefeweizen took gold in the category of German-style Wheat Ale (out of 23 entries). It was the fourth win for the Hefeweizen at GABF. The Boscos wheat beer previously won gold in 2005 and 2007 and a silver medal in 2006.

Meanwhile, Boscos’ sister brewery, Ghost River, took the silver medal in the Irish-style Red Ale category (31 entries) for the Ghost River Copperhead Red.

“The medal for Ghost River is our first and of course that is exciting,” said Chuck Skypeck, founding partner for both Ghost River and Boscos.

Skypeck said Boscos, which enters the competition as a “brewpub group” that allows it promote the win across all its breweries, held mini-competitions among its brewpubs to determine which specific beer to send.

“The Hefeweizen in this case came from Nashville, but could have just as easily come from Memphis or Little Rock,” Skypeck said.

This year 3,930 beers were vying for medals at the Great American Beer Festival, with the number of entries up 11 percent over 2010. Entries were received from 526 breweries in 48 states plus Puerto Rico.

Award-winners received gold, silver and bronze medals in 83 beer categories covering 134 beer styles (including subcategories). A total of 248 medals were awarded.

Check out all the winners here.

GABF’s most competitive category was American-Style India Pale Ale, with 176 entries. Four new beer styles were judged at the 2011 GABF, including Fruit Wheat Beer (48 entries), Chocolate Beer (30 entries), American-Style Brett Ale (31 entries) and International-Style Pale Ale (20 entries).

In addition to the medals won by Boscos and Ghost River, Big River Grille and Brewing in Chattanooga was the other Tennessee winner. The brewpub won a bronze medal for its Rocket Red in the American-Style Amber/Red Ale category (82 entries).

Congrats to the Tennessee winners at GABF!

For the woman who really loves her Tecate…

May 20, 2011 By: mike Category: Oddities, Travelin'

My brother, Mark, found his gem while browsing through gift shops last weekend in Chattanooga’s Coolidge Park. Stay classy, Chattanooga!

Tacky beer dress,