Bottoms Up

Beer and wine in the Bay Area and beyond

Washington Posts Sweet 16 beer contest is pretty sweet

By William Brand
Sunday, March 23rd, 2008 at 6:16 pm in Uncategorized.

Washington Post brackets

OK, I don’t like to gamble. I grew up in a family of gamblers, mostly horse races and bridge (You don’t think bridge is gambling. Trust me, it can be.) I guess I’d rather drop my coins on beer.

Therefore, I’m immune to sports gambling and to the growing furor about the NCAA Sweet 16. In the last few years it’s spread to beer, with people nominating favorite beers and everyone voting for their favorite with the most votes for the final two deciding the winner.

Ho hum. We all know if ALL beer drinkers participated, Bud Light would win or maybe Corona. Yuk.

Well, the Washington Post has a twist on this. Their beer columnist (and author of a number of books on beer) Greg Kitsock and Post Sunday Source (Guess it’s their mag. or a section of the Sunday paper) editor Joe Heim start out with 32 beers; then enlisted a tasting panel and worked their way through the beers, flight by flight.

Now they’re down to the simi-finals, the final eight:
Lagers: Flying Dog Old Scratch vs, Raven Lager from Baltimore-Washington Beer works
Ales: Stone Pale Ale (Escondido, CA) vs. Troegs Hopback Amber, Troegs Brewing, Harrisburg, PA.
Specialty & Fruit: Ommegang Hennepin, Brewery Ommegang, Cooperstown, NY. vs. Oxford Raspberry Wheat, Clipper City Brewing, Baltimore, MD.
Dark Beers: Sam Adams Honey Porter vs. Hook & Ladder Backdraft Brown, Hook & Ladder Brewing, Silver Spring, MD.

Unfortunately, the popular vote doesn’t decide the winners. They’ve already been chosen, but you can vote for your favs anyway and then tomorrow, Monday, March 23, they’ll post the results and we have the Final Four. That round will be announced March 30 and the grand winner will be revealed April 6.

They’ve posted details on all the 32 original beers, plus tasting notes and and transcript of a live Q&A earlier this month.

OK, OK, it’spretty neat and I’m interested. Check it out.

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