Three Ohio breweries, including Hoppin’ Frog Brewery in Akron, took home medals last weekend at the 2012 World Beer Cup in San Diego.
The event featured 3,921 beers from 799 breweries in 54 countries. In other words, the competition was stiff.
“The World Beer Cup is called the Olympics of beer,” said Matt Cole, brewer at Fat Heads Brewery & Saloon and a multiple winner at this year’s event. “It’s extremely competitive.”
The Brewers Association, a Boulder, Colo.-based trade group, has sponsored the event every two years since 1996. A total of 284 awards were handed out in 95 style categories.
The Ohio winners were:
• Hoppin’ Frog, a gold medal for its Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. the Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout in the wood- and barrel-aged strong stout category.
“We are so happy to be recognized for BA BORIS … This is truly a great honor for us,” owner and brewer Fred Karm said in an email.
• Rock Bottom Brewery in Cincinnati, a gold medal for its Sarah’s Two Headed Buffalo in the wood- and barrel-aged beer category.
“It’s pretty cool to see Ohio on the map,” brewmaster Mitchell Dougherty said.
• Fat Heads, which has a brewpub in North Olmsted and production brewery in Middleburg Heights, two silver medals for Battle Axe Baltic Porter in the Baltic-style porter category and Head Hunter IPA in the American-style India pale ale category.
Cole said he was particularly proud of Battle Axe’s showing. “I would have probably been a little discouraged if that wasn’t awarded,” he said. “I thought it exemplified the style to a T.”
The medals for B.O.R.I.S. and Head Hunter shouldn’t surprise craft beer drinkers, considering they are regular winners at national competitions.
Anheuser-Busch InBev, MillerCoors and Boston Beer Co. — which have breweries in Ohio — also took home medals. To see a complete list of winners, go to www.worldbeercup.org/winners.
Ken Stewart’s Grille, 1970 W. Market St., will hold its first “Beers from Around the World” pairing dinner at 6:30 p.m. May 17.
The five-course dinner will feature Mt. Carmel Nut Brown Ale with pan-seared duck; 21st Amendment Watermelon Wheat with salad; bison burger with Brooklyn East India Pale Ale; Smuttynose Big A IPA with short rib; and Anderson Valley Oatmeal Stout with espresso creme brulee.
David Andes from Heidelberg Distributing Co. will host the event. The cost is $50, with a portion benefiting the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation.
Reservations are required and can be made by calling 330-867-2555.
The International Beer Fest, a gigantic beer festival and competition featuring about 800 beers, is Friday and Saturday at the I-X Center in Cleveland.
Three tasting sessions are available: 7 to 11 p.m. Friday, 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday and 7 to 11 p.m. Saturday. For more details, including costs and a list of brewers, go to: www.ixbeerfest.com or call 216-265-7468.
Rick Armon can be reached at 330-996-3569 or email@example.com.