The California State Fair is on in Sacramento this week and one of the big features is the Craft Beer competition, a judging all the more important for the fair since the popular home winemaking competition is suspended for a second straight year because of budget cuts.
About 700 beers were entered by 83 breweries large and small. Best in Show ribbon went to Una Mas, a Vienna Lager by Left Coast Brewing of San Clemente. Best in Show for a new beer, went to Ocho Barril, a wood-aged session beer by Half Moon Bay Brewing Co.
Our local breweries brought home some medals:
- Bear Republic’s Grand Am pale ale took gold in the competitive American Pale Ale category.
- Anderson Valley’s Barney Flats Oatmeal Stout took silver in the Oatmeal Stout category.
- Moylan’s Dragoons Dry Irish Stout took silver in the Dry Stout category, followed by Mendocino Brewing’s Black Hawk Stout.
- The results flip-flopped in the Russian Imperial Stout category, with Mendocino’s Imperial Stout taking silver, followed by Moylan’s Ryan Sullivan’s Imperial Stout.
- North Coast’s Le Merle took gold in the Saison category.
- Marin Brewing’s Dipsea Triple took silver in the Belgian Strong Ale category.
- North Coast’s Old Stock took bronze in the Old Ale category.
- Mendocino’s Imperial Barleywine took gold in the American Barleywine category.
- Marin Brewing did well in the specialty categories, taking gold among Fruit Beers for its Blueberry ale; gold in the Spice/Herb/Vegetable category for its Platypus Venom Imperial Stout Star Anise; and silver in the Christmas beer category for their Happy Holidaze.
– Sean Scully