Reviewing the 2015 Oregon Beer Awards & Willamette Week’s 2015 Portland Beer Guide
So one of the two Portland weekly papers, Willamette Week, took the initiative to honor the so-called best beers, breweries, festivals and beer bar in all of Oregon for the inaugural Oregon Beer Awards. On Wednesday, February 25th this will be released in Willamette Week’s 2015 Portland Beer Guide.
The awards ceremony took place last evening in Portland at the Doug Fir Lounge. People in attendance were treated to the first copies of the new beer guide. From briefly flipping through the guide it looks to be well done and presented for both the hard-core beer geek along with the casual beer drinker.
The staff at the Willamette Week made their own picks for its Top 10 Beers of 2015 and also included another set of awards compiled from the votes of 200 or so other participants. Willamette Week determined its own Top 10 Beers as they have done so in the past for its first two issues. In the first year of the guide Willamette Week voted Fearless Loki Red as one of the Top 10 from that year.
This year the papers Top 10 Beers are as follows:
- Engelberg Pilsner – Upright Brewing
- Peach Slap (Batch No. 1) – Deschutes Brewery Portland Public House
- Hop-A-Wheelie – Boneyard Beer
- Top O’ The Feckin Mornin’ – Feckin Brewery
- Schwarzbier – Pints Brewing
- Alpenglow – Fat Head’s Brewery Portland
- La Tormenta – Breakside Brewery
- Red Sea – Big Island/Caldera
- Altbier – Widmer Brothers Brewing
- Golden Promise Single Malt Pale Ale – pFriem Family Brewers
For the industry voting, the Willamette Week sent ballots to approximately 200 people in the craft beer industry. I’m guessing from the responses that the Willamette Week‘s mailing list doesn’t venture too far out of the Portland metro area. We here at Brewpublic did not receive a ballot until one of the better beer writers from the Willamette Week and our friend, Brian Yaeger, realized that we were originally not part of the original invited list. (For this year’s guide, Yaeger did not work with the weekly paper.)
So how did the following beers, bars, breweries and festivals get nominated? The Willamette Week selected approximately 20 individuals from the beer industry. This was led by Willamette Week’s Martin Cizmar and included a few other beer writers including Jeff Alworth and
Pete Dunlop (ed note: I must have misheard that part of Pete being part of the committee during last night’s event, my apologies for the confusion…updated, I was originally correct that this info was given at the awards, a comment from Samurai Artist was partially incorrect) along with beer bar owners and a few brewers including Breakside’s Ben Edmunds to make up this group.
Each of the categories allowed the 200 or so voters to select up to 3 choices from the predetermined set of nominees that were decided upon from this committee. For each category below the winners of the Gold, Silver and Bronze medals are placed before the rest of the category that is in no particular order of votes received.
When the Willamette Week’s 2015 Portland Beer Guide hits newsstands on Wednesday, February 25th, you will only see the top place finisher in each of these categories. I find it much more interesting to see what the voters had to choose from when casting their ballots. Hope you enjoy!
Best New Brewery
Buoy Beer Company – 49pts
StormBreaker Brewing – 40pts
Ex Novo Brewing Company – 32pts
Baerlic Brewing Company
Fat Heads Brewery
Wild Ride Brewing Co.
This was a good list of new breweries. I am a bit surprised that Fat Head’s was not in the top 3. Out of all the breweries listed, Fat Head’s was making the best beer right out of the gate.
Best Beer Bar
Belmont Station – 49pts
Bailey’s Taproom – 39pts
Saraveza Bottle Shop and Pasty Tavern – 31pts
ABV Public House
Crow’s Feet Commons
The Bier Stein
The Cheese Bar
The Hop and Vine
This category seemed the most suspect to me. Clearly some top-notch beer bars were omitted from the nominating committee. Where was Horse Brass Pub? Come on, the Brass is an institution around here. If it weren’t for Don Younger who knows where Oregon’s craft beer scene would be today. The Cheese Bar with only 6 taps and a handful of bottles makes the list while APEX and The BeerMongers do not? Then two beer bars in DRAFT Magazine‘s Top 100 Beer Bars; Bazi Bierbrasserie and Imperial Taproom & Bottle Shop did not even get nominated.
Then when it comes to Bend, the only nominee is Crow’s Feet Commons. I had to look this one up. To save you the time I found out that it’s a bicycle and ski shop that also serves coffee and beer. Sounds as if it would be a busy place in the active town of Bend. But there are some quality spots that are truly a craft beer bar in Bend, including Platypus Pub and Broken Top Bottle Shop. I definitely see a large problem of the nominees within this category.
Best Brewpub Experience
Pfriem Family Brewers – 40pts
Breakside Brewery – 31pts
Fort George Brewery – 29pts
Barley Brown’s Brew Pub
Buoy Beer Company
Double Mountain Brewery
Pelican Pub & Brewery
Terminal Gravity Brewing
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
Not really sure what is meant by a “Brewpub Experience”. Maybe naming this category just Best Brewpub would make a bit more sense regarding the top place finishers. When I think of the definition of “Experience” I think that it would mean more than just the beer and the food, therefore McMenamins Edgefield should have won very easily followed by a closely by Pelican Pub & Brewery and Buoy Beer Company.
Best Beer Festival
Cheers to Belgian Beers – 38pts
Hood River Hops Fest – 29pts
Oregon Brewers Festival – 28pts
Eastern Oregon Beer Festival
Festival of the Dark Arts
Holiday Ale Festival
Portland Beer & Cheese Fest
Portland Fruit Beer Fest
This category of nominees seemed also a bit suspect. I’m glad to see Cheers to Belgian Beers come out on top. Two of the better festivals in the state call Eugene home and both Sasquatch or Hellshire Day & Barrel Aged Beer Fest never received a nomination from the committee. However, Eastern Oregon Beer Festival in just its first year receives a nomination. Then the Portland Beer & Cheese Fest, a great fest but quite small, also receives a nomination.
Brewery Of The Year
Breakside Brewery – 55pts
The Commons Brewery – 51pts
Barley Brown’s Brew Pub – 23pts
Fort George Brewery
Gigantic Brewing Company
Heater Allen Brewing
Old Town Brewing Co.
Pfriem Family Brewers
Both Breakside and The Commons took over half of the votes to receiving a commanding Gold and Silver respectively. I’m a bit shocked that Barley Brown’s did not receive more votes than it did. And unlike other beer awards, this category had its own voting and did no fall upon medals earned from each of the other categories.
Pils – Heater Allen Brewing – 35pts
Engelberg Pilsner – Upright Brewing Company – 31pts
Dunkle Lager – The Commons Brewery – 22pts
Gold Beach Lager – Arch Rock Brewing Company
Helles – Buoy Beer Co.
Spica Hefepils – Ecliptic Brewing
HUB Lager Northwest Pilsner – Hopworks Urban Brewery
Lux – Ninkasi Brewing Company
Old Town Pilsner – Old Town Brewing
Unkle Pilsner – Silver Moon Brewing
This category had some solid nominations to choose from. My favorite was also the Willamette Weeks’s 2015 Beer of the Year, Engelberg Pilsner. This is one of my favorite beers to enjoy prior to catching a game at the Moda Center.
Best Dark (Porter, Stout, Browns & Unflavored)
Turmoil Black IPA – Barley Brown’s Brewpub – 37pts
Cavatica Stout – Fort George Brewery – 33pts
Tsunami Stout – Pelican Pub & Brewery – 27pts
Black Bear XX Stout – Alameda Brewing Company
Primeval NW Brown Ale – Baerlic Brewing Company
Irish Stout – Breakside Brewery
Black Butte Porter – Deschutes Brewery
Sandy Paws – Heater Allen Brewing
Schwarzbier – Old Town Brewing
Bertha Brown Ale – Sasquatch Brewery
The #5 Beer of the Year from Willamette Week, Pints Schwarzbier, didn’t even receive a nomination from the nomination panel. Of the nominees the top three seemed like solid winners. However I do miss Breakside’s Irish Stout. Such a great lower ABV beer, just wish they’d bring this one back in their lineup.
Best Sour or Wild
Peche ‘N Brett – Logsdon Farmhouse Ales – 43pts
Flemish Kiss – The Commons Brewery – 37pts
La Tormenta – Breakside Brewery – 24pts
La Tache – The Ale Apothecary – 24pts
Cucumber Crush – 10 Barrel Brewing Co.
Ching Ching – Bend Brewing Company
Noyaux – Cascade Brewing Barrel House
Hose – de Garde Brewing
Cultivateur – Deschutes Brewery
Jeux D’eau – Upright Brewing
Cucumber Crush was quite the sour ale of choice from many beer drinkers…well until big bad Budweiser purchased them. This was my top choice in this category with Ching Ching a very close second. If my memory served me correctly I never tried Peche ‘N Brett in 2014. However after sampling it a few weekends ago during Zwickelmania at Logsdon’s soon to open downtown Hood River location I was blown away by it. Its an amazing beer!
Best Belgian Style
Urban Farmhouse Ale – The Commons Brewery – 66pts
Belgian Strong Dark – pFriem Family Brewing – 47 pts
Five – Upright Brewing – 26pts
Straffe Drieling Tripel – Logsdon Organic Farmhouse Ales
Winema Wit – Pelican Pub & Brewery
Wandlepad – Block 15 Brewery & Restaurant
Belgian IPA – Deschutes Brewery
Volta – Gigantic Brewing Company
Little Green Dry Hop Saison – Flat Tail Brewing
Belgian Blond – Sasquatch Brewing
The Commons was the clear winner in this category gaining 66 of the approximate 200 possible votes. Definitely a beer that is rarely turned down by this guy.
Best of the Island of Misfit Beers
(This category includes herbed, spiced, fruit, vegetable, chocolate, coffee, or other flavored beers)
Sweet Heat – Burnside Brewing Co. – 29pts
Too Much Coffee Man – Gigantic Brewing – 28pts
Flora Rustica – Upright Brewing – 28pts
Pumpernickel Rye Saison – The Commons Brewery – 24pts
Citra Hot Blonde – Barley Brown’s
Oblique Black and White Coffee Stout – Cascade Brewing Barrel House
Perihelion Crimson Saison – Ecliptic Brewing
Survival Stout – Hopworks Urban Brewery
Pampelmousse Citrus IPA – Lompoc Brewing
Oud Bes Strawberry Balsamic Flanders Red Ale – Oakshire Brewing
This category lives up to its title. The Willamette Week was all over the board with these listed nominees. I felt a solid list but nominating a few of these beers that were in limited supply definitely hurt the beer’s chances of gaining votes.
Best Hoppy Beer
Pallet Jack – Barley Brown’s – 56pts
Breakside IPA – Breakside Brewery – 51pts
3-Way IPA – Fort George/Block 15/Boneyard Brewing – 45pts
Fresh Squeezed IPA – Deschutes Brewery
White Astroid Imperial Wit IPA – Ecliptic Brewing
Gigantic IPL – Gigantic Brewing Company
Descender IPA – GoodLife Brewing Company & Bier Hall
Citrus Mistress – Hop Valley Brewing Company
Workhorse IPA – Laurelwood Public House & Brewery
Silverspot IPA – Pelican Pub & Brewery
Upheaval IPA – Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
Of the beers nominated this category had the clear winners. It’s difficult to argue with these medal winners.
Best Strong Hoppy Beer
Megafauna – Laurelwood Public House & Brewery – 34pts
Sticky Hands – Block 15 Brewery & Restaurant – 33pts
Notorious IPA3 – Boneyard Beer Company – 32pts
Fork Lift Double IPA – Barley Brown’s Brewpub
India Golden Ale – Breakside Brewery
Half Hitch – Crux Fermentation Project
Molten Lava – Double Mountain Brewery & Taproom
Comatose Imperial IPA – GoodLife Brewing Company & Bier Hall
The Perfect Storm Double IPA – Oakshire Brewing
Uncle Jim’s Maui Wowie Double IPA – Silver Moon Brewing
This category of winners was very tight. The one challenge with the categories Silver winner is that Sticky Hands recipe is a continually changing one. Not sure which version of this beer the 20 person selection committee was nominating. Maybe they truly tasted all of the various versions, if so I’m a bit jealous since the couple of versions I’ve tasted have been quite memorable.
Best Traditional Beer
Altbier – Occidental Brewing Company – 48pts
Kiwanda Cream Ale – Pelican Pub & Brewery – 33pts
Kolsch – Old Town Brewing Co. – 28pts
Ashland Amber – Caldera Brewing Company
Sticke Alt – Heater Allen Brewing
Velvet ESB – Hopworks Urban Brewery
Laurelweizen – Laurelwood Public House & Brewery
Helles Hefeweizen – Pints Brewery
Offen Kolsch – Upright Brewing Company
Hefweizen – Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
With this category I really felt that Widmer Hefeweizen should have placed in the top 3 but of all the categories this was the best one for the predetermined nominees.
Best Session Beer
Handtruck Pale Ale 5.5% – Barley Brown’s Brewpub – 40pts
Suicide Squeeze IPA 4.5% – Fort George Brewery – 33pts
Sweet As! Pacific Pale Ale 6.0% – GoodLife Brewing Company & Bier Hall – 32pts
Bone Light Session Ale 4.0% – Boneyard Beer Company
Trilogy 1 Crystal Dry-Hopped Pale Ale 5.2% – BridgePort Brewing Co.
Off Leash NW Session Ale 4.5% – Crux Fermentation Project
Twilight Summer Ale 5.0% – Deschutes Brewery
Stellanova India Session Ale 4.2% – Ecliptic Brewing
Session Black Lager 5.4% – Full Sail Brewing Company
Migration Pale Ale 5.6% – Migration Brewing Company
I added the ABV content to the list above when I conducted my voting. Because of the ABV content, this was a challenging category to choose from since many of these beers are over the generally accepted ABV threshold of under 5.0%. Gold Medal Winner Handtruck Pale Ale is a phenomenal lower alcohol beer but its just that, a lower alcohol beer at 5.5% ABV. Coming in at Silver was a true to style Session Beer, Suicide Squeeze at only 4.5% ABV which I felt was a top quality beer from Fort George. Then rounding out this category was a very high ABV beer but also quite enjoyable, Sweet As! Pacific Pale Ale clocking in at the robust 6.0% ABV. Maybe its just that the selection committee enjoys bigger beers or has difficulty understanding what is accepted when it comes to a session style beer.
Mother of All Storms – Pelican Pub & Brewery – 15pts
Super Nebula – Block 15 Brewery & Restaurant – 14pts
Tough Love – Crux Fermentation Project – 13pts
I apologize for this one but I do not remember having the opportunity to vote in this category. Not sure if this was added after my ballot was submitted or if I made an error and did not get the other nominated beers. Still a solid group of winners, I’d just like to see the other beers that were nominated.
In all the event was a fun evening and it’s worth seeking out a copy of the Willamette Week’s 2015 Portland Beer Guide. It’s just that if the publisher wants to do an Oregon Beer Awards they could improve on the nomination process of events and beers that are more commonly accepted.
For Bend’s beer bars I have NO idea how Crow’s Feet Commons would make the list over both Broken Top Bottle Shop and the Platypus Pub. Strange.
Really seems more like the “Portland” Beer Awards; nice to see some out-of-the-area nominees and winners, but it does seem quite overwhelmingly PDX-centric.
Just curious why Fat Head’s is considered a new brewery. Alpenglow was released in OH quite some time ago, no?
Well its pretty dam obvious the big distributors and mega corporate breweries played a heavy hand in these decisions.
The island of misfits reeks of Anheuser-Busch InBev, the best brewpub experiences was obviously chosen by China Resource Snow Breweries Ltd.
If the Carlsberg Group didn’t pick the best hoppy beer then strike me down.
The best sour/wild? Might as well re-name that category the Champagne of beers because its obviously Miller Time.
Corrections: The Willamette Week did not select the panel of industry folks who made the nominations. No offense to Pete Dunlop but he also was not part of the nominations. The panel probably was Portland centric but thats only because people couldnt or wouldnt drive in from Bend etc. to attend. Also there was a large emphasis on drafting voters from every region and you can apply to become a voter so in future years it will be an even larger voting pool.
Martin Cizmar from Willamette Week here.
I just wanted to clarify a few things…
First, the nominees were not picked by WW, but by a committee of 20 people operating under a consensus model.
As the Beer Guide editor, I was one of 20 people in the nomination meeting, and I was a facilitator, not any sort of decider. We debated what categories we should have, and what should be in them. We tried to keep it to 10 nominees each, but some had 11 and some had 9. We spend four hours on this task. There was yelling and cheering and grumbling. It was not undertaken as lightly as you seem to think.
And from that process we got nominees. I had one vote of 200 in what won. That’s why the WW Beer of the Year lost to another beer in its category.
Our top 10 are things our writing crew picked, again through a consensus, but in a process where I am the final decider. It’s in no way meant to be consistent with the OBAs, which are their own thing.
Now, when it comes to the Portland versus the state thing, I think the committee did an extremely good job of including people outside Portland, and that the results show that. You can complain about some little festivals in Eugene—to me, Eugene is not a top five beer city IN OREGON—but from that category second place outside Portland and third place is the largest outdoor beer festival in the western hemisphere. And you say you’re happy with what won. So… what’s the complaint?
There’s no Portland brewery in the top three for session, dark beer or barrel-aged? Considering a third of the breweries in the state are in the Portland metro area, that seems pretty crazy to me. But, hey, that’s what 200 people who know more than me voted for!
If this were a WW-led nomination list, I can assure you that it would be far more Portlandcentric. Bend would not have had any beer bar nominated over Horse Brass. Sorry, Abernathy, you live in a pretty little mountain community, but c’mon.
Anyway, thanks for coming out and thanks for the write-up, but I hope people understand why these results were as they are.
Instead of the Horse Brass?
Completely against my better judgement, I’m chiming in here. Probably for the same reason I have always jumped to defend Ezra when he’s attacked publicly or privately. And as I’ve done countless times for our dear friend Martin (half of whose suffering of such slings and arrows have come at the hands of Ezra). DJ’s story is fair AND accurate. Did he toss in a few zings? Sure. But the main argument against this, or cries of inaccuracies, are about the fairly negligible dichotomy between Willamette Week’s Best Beers and the Oregon Beer Awards’ Best Beers. Yes, Martin helmed the former and Ezra co-helmed the latter, but it’s disingenuous to claim they are wildly different entities when the OBAs are wholly a creation of WW.
And a good creation at that. No one is anti OBA or even WW BOTY. At least not from my reading or conversations I’ve been privy to. The fact is, these lists and ALL lists of “best of” anything are 100% subjective regardless of voting members, just like the Academy Awards that tried to steal the OBA’s thunder by scheduling it a night earlier.
To everyone who was not in that room with the panel of 20 beer experts, meaning me and the entire population of Earth minus 20 beer experts living primarily in Portland, when the two sets of awards were announced at the same venue on the same stage and by the same person save for two sponsors, it’s natural that they sound the same. Who nominated, and who voted for what, is really beside the point here. There were winners, also-rans, and some obvious snubs (Fire Mountain Brew House!!! #FMBHTID). DJ is a well-informed local beer expert who wrote up his honest critique including where he agreed with the nominees and winners. As one of the 200 people who voted electronically, some of my choices won and most did not. As the author of Oregon Breweries and having visited nearly 190 of the operating breweries in the state, I do feel I’m hyper aware of the great beer scene beyond Portland’s walls. And yet, that makes me extra aware how great beer is inside our borders. Over a third of all Oregon breweries exist within Portland Metro. WW’s readership is probably 9/10s Portlanders. It’s OK to not pretend like this is an accurate survey of the entire state. And I say that even though I’d argue til I’m blue that only one–maybe two–of the Top 10 “Brewpub Experiences” are in Portland.
So please, can’t we all just get along? Don’t hate on Brewpublic just because this blog’s recap of last night was posted first or written without vested interests. There’s no pointed or fallacious attacks. There was no “mole” (Martin explained the process from the stage and details were outlined in the Beer Guide distributed last night). As brewers, aficionados, “experts” and consumers, we’re all winners.
PS: Martin Cizmar’s reporting in the opening of the WW Beer Guide, “The legend of Beervana (pg 15)” contains factual errors.
“…the Jug Shop is packed for a tasting of beers Portalnders can buy at Fred Meyer or a grungy bodega.” Of the 27 beers I selected for this tasting, only 6 have ever been sold from the shelves of a Fred Meyer or, most likely, any grungy bodega. These included the GABF gold medal winning Breakside IPA, Ft George 1811 Pre-Pro Lager b/c I thought the night needed a calibration beer, and HUB’s Abominable, the review of which still haunts Cizmar to this day: http://www.wweek.com/portland/article-18152-drank_abominable_winter_ale_(hopworks_urban_brewery).html
The other 21 beers included the likes of HUB’s Kentucky X-mas (bourbon aged A-bomb), De Garde, Boneyard (who is draft only), The Commons’ finite 3rd anniversary beer, and three different bottles from Ale Apothecary which retails for roughly $30/ea, which brings me to the second matter…
“These people…spent $65.” The cost to enter my “Oregon Breweries Night” at The Jug Shop in San Francisco was $45 in advance. No one even paid $50 at the door since it sold out.
And lastly, “…sippers who rent one-bedroom apartments for $4,000 a month.” Some 1BRs go for closer to $5,000. http://sfbay.craigslist.org/sfc/apa/4896278192.html
Ezra: Yeah I saw the volunteer signup on your page, and registered. Driving to Portland– that makes sense, but if the timing is right I’m happy to do so.
Martin: I did not say Platypus or Broken Top instead of the Horse Brass — I said I didn’t know how they got overlooked for Bend’s Crow’s Feet Commons. (In fact I would have picked the Horse Brass as my #1 pick.) My point is if there’s going to be a Bend beer bar on that list, I’m mystified as to why it’s CFC.
Theres nothing wrong with DJ’s review of the OBA. It’s fair to question some of the results and methodology. The people who built the categories and pared down the list of entries did their best, but there will always be an element of subjectivity involved. This isn’t an athletic competition. Everybody needs to calm down about the results. These things are never going to satisfy everyone.
A note on my involvement. I wrote some snippets for the Beer Guide and thought I would be a member of the group that came up with the categories and entries. But I never received an invitation to that gathering. So I was surprised when Martin mentioned my name during his intro. If he thinks I was part of the panel, I suppose that’s good enough for me. Maybe next year.
Hey Pete: Sorry, I thought you were there! There were a lot of us there! It was a crazy night of debate and discussion. We made a point of limiting the number of beer writers so we could get more industry people, but I’m sorry you weren’t there.
Hi Brian: “[I]t’s disingenuous to claim they are wildly different entities when the OBAs are wholly a creation of WW…” Honestly, that’s not true. WW has a panel of writers who picks out top 10 of the year and we did. I’m responsible for those picks ultimately and you can complain about my picks all you want. And they are very much subjective.
The OBAs were organized by WW because we have a team to handle the details, but it was very much a group effort. Ezra and Ben were equal partners in formulating a draft of the categories and picking the nomination committee.
Are those results merely subjective? I guess you can say that, but I think it’s unnecessarily dismissive. This is what (seriously!) a wide swath of the smartest beer insiders in the state thought… they disagreed with me in a bunch of cases, but I know enough about the names on that list of voters to trust their collective wisdom as much as my own.
To me, that’s the thing that got lost in this write-up: For the first time, the OBAs asked the most knowledgable people in the state to collectively honor the best of the past year. I think the committee did an incredible job handling that impossible task.
I am anti OBA and WW BOTY but mostly because those involved cannot seem to disconnect themselves from their biases, egos, shock value journalism and industry connections. If they cared one bit about journalistic integrity, they would take the steps to avoid subjective choices. The reality is Martin et al view their readers as too stupid to question their choices and those that do care will comment and raise hell which leads to spirited debates that they believe keep them relevant. Brewpublic does a fine job of making it clear when they are writing opinion pieces and this story was no exception. WW makes it clear they belive this is the definitive list because a lot of beer experts had their opinions “heard.” The unfortunate reality admitted to here is Martin has final say so if he had a bad experience at the Beermongers in the past, you better believe they won’t make the list.
I now have some time to respond to what I wrote regarding the WW 2015 Beer Guide. My reviewing of this guide and its ranking of beers, beer bars, breweries, festivals etc was to bring to the valued readers of Brewpublic the winners and the choices that one had to choose from. Is this scientific, hell no! However, to say that X beer is the Top Beer of 2015 I am quite confident our readers would like to know what the options were that myself and the other 199 voters had to choose from.
To me it seems like the organizers are trying to hide the fact that these Oregon Beer Awards should be better called the Portland Beer Awards. There is more to this state than just Portland.
Samurai Artist – Regarding your comment about corrections, I did correct that portion where I mentioned that Pete Dunlop was involved. However I did hear what I heard while Martin Cizmar was on stage at the Doug Fir when he stated that Dunlop was directly involved with selection committee. It was when Dunlop was standing next to Jeff Alworth. I was taking notes as a good beer writer does so I could complete an article regarding this annual issue from WW.
You know who was on the panel, so why do you state, “The panel probably was Portland centric”.
Probably? Was it Portland centric or not? Were you not in the room?
Martin – I still do not understand why you keep stating that I am getting this entire process wrong. If you read my article you would see that I listed the WW picks first with a description on the people involved, the WW staff. After these WW awards were listed I then transitioned into the committee nominated portion, also stating what I knew about the nominating process. It looks clear to me. I took the liberty to write all of the nominees as your paper chose to only list the Top award winner.
I stand by one error I originally made when I mentioned that is was the WW staff and its regard for strong session beers. When you pointed that out early in the morning via Twitter, instead of a more professional option of privately emailing me, I promptly changed it to reflect that it was the nominating committee that chose these higher ABV session beers. So with that corrected, does your publication and this guy calling himself a Samurai and an Artist stand by a 6% ABV beer as being a session beer? Actually do you two stand by half of the beers nominated by a committee that includes a session beer proponent, Jeff Alworth, that session beers are commonly referred to as beers being above 5% ABV? You do have a “title” of Editor.
About the Best Beer Bar nominees, I as Jon Abernathy also stated, did not say to include Platypus or Broken Top instead of Horse Brass, just that these two from Bend should have been there instead of the nominated Crow’s Feet Commons.
Which little festival in Eugene are you talking about? Are you ridiculing the Sasquatch Brew Fest? Have you ever attended? Do you realize that this event is a fundraiser for the Glen Hay Falconer Foundation? I would suggest you show some respect for an individual that provided so much to the brewing world during his short time here on earth.
Please let me know any other factual errors in my reporting of the event in which I did have a fun time at. All I was doing is reviewing my take on what was presented and how it was presented. Maybe your narrative was not the one I chose to take.
“The unfortunate reality admitted to here is Martin has final say so if he had a bad experience at the Beermongers in the past, you better believe they won’t make the list.”
This is flat-out not true. There were a bunch of nominations that I did not personally favor, but that’s what makes it a CONSENSUS DECISION. When the committee was split, it came down to a vote and everyone left the room supporting the group wisdom.
The fact that you came to believe that is my problem with DJ’s post. It’s just not true.
I’m the editor of the Beer Guide, not the OBAs. That was a separate event organized by WW’s events coordinator with help from others.
I personally wanted to cut off session at 4.5% ABV. But the group thought differently and people explained why. I support our collective decision 100%.
It’s honestly a little weird to me that people here don’t understand how group decision making works. You can have an opinion, make your argument, fail to convince others and agree with the ultimate decision of the group. Even though I’m a bossman editor guy, I do this all the time and I strongly value it, above even my own opinion.
Democracy! Equality! Consensus!
You guys need to listen to more KBOO!
I’ve said this before and I’m saying it again. Martin’s right! http://kboo.fm/sites/default/files/episodeaudio/fs150121.mp3 Jump to the 23:37 mark.
Great discussion and all but I’m more concerned with the those three part-time beer-photographer/beer-blogger/beer-whatevers in the photo being considered “beerlebrities.” Beer-bloggerties or something, maybe…
Didn’t realize John’s Market was a beer bar. And no mention of APEX nor The Hop & Vine on this map (A-W) list? WW imho has always been stupid when it comes to beer and this guide seems like a bully run pay to play advertorial load of shite full of weed ads. Who the hell are the writers? What’s there credentials? Don’t most rags post this as a point of reference. Seems like this is just ramming some neanderthal’s 2 cents down the throats of people who know jack about beer’s throats. Hooray for idiots!