Pennsylvania breweries did themselves proud in the World Beer Cup judging at the Craft Brewers Conference in Philadelphia last week, especially those in the immediate region. As is almost always the case in these instances, it was Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant which set the pace, taking medals in five categories, four of them earned by breweries in the city’s suburbs and one by the location in Wilmington, Del. Pennsylvania won 11 awards in all, the other seven coming from Conshohocken, Lancaster, Roundabout, Spring House, Straub, Stoudts, and Susquehanna.
The four winners who sell their beers in the local market did not include any of the usual suspects or the BeerAdvocate and/or Rate Beer darlings. Indeed, wins by Lancaster and Stoudts were a reminder of local craft’s earliest days and wins by Conshohocken and Susquehanna represented the impact of the newer kids on the block. It might be stretching a bit to call those results ironic, but let’s do it anyway.
What was ironic without question was that the Iron Hill performance, by far the most impressive by any brewpub in the competition, did not win the company a Champion Brewpub award, presumably (I still have not had official confirmation that this is the case from the Brewers Association) because all five entries were done by the location at which they were brewed and not as a single company entry.
The irony? If Iron Hill had chosen to do its entries as a single company, it would probably have used company headquarters in Delaware as the submitting address and all five medal would have been credited there. And there’s more. For years, I used this site to complain about Iron Hill doing just that in its annual GABF submissions, crediting everything to Delaware, because I wanted to report the specific brewer and location of each winning beer (yes, and be able to include the local one in the Pennsylvania total) here and in coverage I do for various brewspapers locally and nationally.
Be careful what you wish for? You got that right.SHARE