Congratulations to Flix Brewhouse Carmel (6 wins) and Backstep Brewing Crawfordsville (5 wins) for grabbing the largest number of medals for beer at this years Brewers Cup. In meads and ciders the props go to McClure’s of Peru, IN, for ciders and to Hive and Barrel Meadery in Louisville for the meads in terms of numbers of medals.
When Chris Knott went to Flix many years ago, we knew we were in for a good thing! What we did not expect was that he and Josh Miller would team up as head brewer and assistant at that time, and that while Chris would later move up to Lead Brewer for the Flix chain, Josh would move on to help found Backstep and both would move on as some of the best brewers in Indiana. Between the breweries, they took ELEVEN medals this year. Flix took 2 first place for Das Umlaut marzen, and Skull Crusher Wee Heavy, 3 seconds for Marvelous Maibock helles bock, Lupulus American IPA, Super Power Potion biere de garde, and a third place for Luna Rosa witbier. Backstep also gained two first place for Dunkel Witz Munich dunkel and Lost Season saison plus three second place for By Necessity California common, Quinn Irish stout, and Prickly Pear Gose. If you’ve not been Flix is in NMerchant’s Square near 2206 E 116th St, Carmel, IN , but at the intersection of AAA Way and Station drive. Check their web site for movie times BUT visit the pub anytime the theater is open which is often 10 am to nearly midnight. Backstep Brewing is located at 125 N Green St, in the heart of Crawfordsville, IN.
There were a total of nine other Indiana breweries that grabbed three medals each while Gravely Brewing of Kentucky took top Best of Show for a Czech premium lager while Sun King finished 2nd in the Best of Show space with Sunlight Cream Ale, one of the top selling big-3. The third ranked BOS was Corporate Cake, a barrel aged Imperial Milk stout brewed with lactose, coconut, vanilla, and chocolate and so decadent being labeled a fruit/herb/vegetable beer!
All of Indiana’s major brewer’s walked away with an award as well as most of the most established breweries and brewpubs. Daredevil claimed 3 awards, a first for Vacation Kolsh and for Beautiful Dreams English Brown plus a third for the Bock. Sun King took a second for Touched by an Angel Belgian Triple, and a first for Mr. J wild ale in addition to their win for Sunlight. Taxman claimed a first for Mezcal Exemption (bbl aged) and two third place awards for Bourbon Barrel Deduction their aged dubble and for Cache Flow Apricot.
Mad Anthony of Fort Wayne was able to celebrate their twenty -fifth year with a first place for Six 2 Midnight pale and a second for their standby Auburn Lager. It’s great to see another classic Indiana beer walk away (again) with a medal after all these years.
Rock Bottom, the venerable chain that’s also been around for years took a total of six awards across three brewpubs. The Indy location grabbed first for Popping My Collar a blueberry stout, as well as for Corporate Cake. The Orland Park, IL, brewpub, with a veteran brewer once in Indy, grabbed two second place awards for El Hefe and for Colonial Ale while the Warrenville RB took a first for Law Grrr (get it?) for a light lager and a third for Properly a dark mild.
Upland showcased the sours with a first for Raspberry sour ale and a second for Oak and White to go back to its roots (pun intended) combining Oliver Winery grapes in Upland oak vats for this fruited sour beer. Upland started their sour program with experimental batches in Oliver barrels in 2006.
Although 3 Floyds Brewing, the giant, may not care much about awards anymore they took a third place for Space Station Middle Finger pale just to show they still could!
Veteran Triton Brewing took a well-deserved third place for Barn Phantom Gose. With so many awards over so many years, I wonder if Bier Brewery just took the year off for entering as not called to the podium this year.
It is great to see Cedar Creek of the Martinsville area and Centerpoint of Indianapolis gain 3 awards each. Cedar Creek’s Bryce Elsner, part of the family operation with winery (dad) and distillery (sister), has grown the business to keep very solid beers on tap. his The Strong ald took first, Irish Red took second, and Breakfast Stout took third. We’ve noted Bryce spends more time designing beers than dreaming up catchy names (lol).
Centerpoint with Johnson County founders but near downtown Indy location for their well-known Centerpoint Black porter, another first for Tiki Tango Kombucha Shandy collaboration with Circle Kombucha and a third for Itza Mexican Lager.
Brand new Guggman Haus came ‘out of the gate’ with three first-place awards as a newly opened brewery near downtown Indy. Their Winner’s Milk Jug sweet stout, their The Riverside IPA is a nod to a former amusement park, and you know what Guggenweizen is.
Fort Wayne area did well with awards for four local breweries (& two more in the broader region). In addition to Mad Anthony, Hop River claimed three with a first for an Alt and two thirds for Fat Bob’s Porter and Harrison Street weissbier. Summit City had three third-place beers: Wee So Heavy, Old Crown Ale golden ale, and That’s My Dog dry Irish stout. Junk Ditch Brewing took two seconds for Batch ESB and Tsar Bomba RIS stout.
If we stretch over to Auburn, IN, we add Auburn Brewing’s third for 5 speed, and if we really stretch up to Leesburg, IN, we can count HopLore’s Imperial Amish Krack Double stout which also scored a third place.