UpCup 2013 was a blast this year. Beer Is My Passion had four entries including an American Barleywine (Kyle Alder), an English IPA Spruce Beer (Michael Mustin), a Wood Aged Old Ale (Erik Howell), and a Southern English Brown (Jenn Myers). Upland really knows how to host an awesome homebrewing event. This is by far my favorite competition of the year. We all enjoyed Upland beer on tap, good conversation with brewers from around the state, and awesome food catered by Upland. This year’s UpCup winner was homebrewer and beer judge Thomas Wallbank of the Indianapolis Foam Blowers with a Berliner Weisse. He’ll have his name added on the UpCup trophy with the other winners, and he’ll get to keep it until next year’s competition. Second place went to Ron Smith’s Saison, also a Foam Blower and beer judge. I’m very happy to announce that our own Jenn Myers ended up taking third place with her 221b Baker St. Southern English Brown this year 🙂 If you happen to bump into her make sure to congratulate her. We’re all super proud of her!
Here’s Jenn just after they announced she had taken third place.
Jenn received a free case of any Upland beer of her choice out of Upland’s massive beer cave. Rad Red? Don’t mind if I do 🙂
We all had an awesome time, and as you can see from some of the pictures there may have even been some kung fu fighting in the parking lot 🙂 BIMP later took the party to The Tap for some celebratory brews.
This tasting was definitely one of the weirdest events I think I’ve ever done. While I thought I had prepared myself for this one the best I could have, I can’t remember the last time I’d had so many mediocre beers in one sitting. As you can see we did come up with a winner, however the highest score in the entire event was just below a 6. I had a feeling when we originally planned this event that Budweiser aka The King of Beers would not score very high (and it almost lost the entire event). From what I gather on the scores, the beers in this style that our judges enjoyed the most had a more pronounced hop profile than the others. According to BJCP’s flavor description by style for Classic American Pilsner and Lite, Standard, and Premium American Lager, these beers all have hop profiles that range from none to low. Are we tired of drinking American Lagers in America, or do we just need a break from this mild, slightly malty libation? American Lagers/Pilsners used to be the beer of choice in this country (or should I say the only available choice), but as you can see from this tasting this has changed. While macrobrewed beer had it’s place (and some would say necessity during the years of World War II) in history, micro-brewed beer tends to be the preferred option. Support your local breweries so that we can avoid macro-brewed beer from taking away your choices. Just try to imagine a world without beer caves… I’m getting nervous just thinking about it 🙂
Thanks to all that made the Stout Bout Homebrew Competition at Great Fermentations such an awesome time! There were 10 great beers served, several of which beat out Hoppin’ Frog’s BORIS The Crusher Oatmeal Imperial Stout (a 2-time gold medalist at the Great American Beer Festival that I snuck in for kicks) in our blind tasting. Our top three homebrews selected this go-round were Josh and Ashley Jenkins’ Milk Stout, Doug Dixon’s American Stout, and Michael Catlin’s Breakfast Russian Imperial Stout. Great work guys! The entries were pretty spread out (we had entries for 5 of the 6 recognized BJCP stout categories), with two Russian Imperial Stouts (one was aged for 2 years), 3 Oatmeal Stouts, 2 Milk/Sweet Stouts, a Dry Stout, and an American Stout. Thanks again to Great Fermentations for lending us their classroom, and also to cosIT Photography for the outstanding camerawork. More photos can be found in a set on cosIT’s Flicker Photostream. Cheers!