All About Beer Magazine - Volume 33, Issue 1
March 1, 2012 By

How good is the beer coming out of chain brewpubs?

Pretty good if the 2011 Great American Beer Festival results are any indication.

TAPS Fish House & Brewery, a California chain with seven locations in Orange County, was named Brewpub Group of the Year, winning a gold medal for the German-Style schwarzbier made in Corona, CA, and silver medals for a German-style alt made in Brea, CA, and Belgian/French-style ale made in Corona.

Pizza Port in Ocean Beach, CA, was named Small Brewpub of the Year, taking a gold in the English-style mild category, silver in the imperial red ale category and bronze in the foreign-style stout.

Pizza Port in Carlsbad, NM, was named Large Brewpub of the Year, taking gold medals in the English-style brown ale and American-style brown ale categories; and silver medals in the coffee beer, session beer, Belgian-style strong specialty ale and American-style stout categories.

The Pizza Port location in Solana Beach, CA, took a gold in the American-style stout category and silver in the English-style mild category; the San Marcos location took a bronze in the indigenous beer category; and the San Clemente location took a bronze in the robust porter category.

Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant was awarded silver in the imperial stout category and two bronze medals for beers in the wood and barrel aged strong stout and Vienna-style lager categories.

CraftWorks picked up a gold medal in the robust porter category with a brew made at Rock Bottom in La Jolla, CA; silver medals for a Scottish-style ale made at Rock Bottom in Indianapolis, IN; English-style brown ale made at Rock Bottom in San Diego; and bronze medals for a German-style schwarzbier made by Gordon Biersch in Seattle, a Scottish-style ale made at Rock Bottom in Bethesda, MD, an American-style red/amber ale made at Big River Grille in Chattanooga, TN, an English-style brown ale made at Rock Bottom in Westminster, CO, and a German-style sour ale made by Gordon Biersch in Rockville, MD.

BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery’s Chandler, AZ, location won the silver medal in the field beer or pumpkin beer category.

The Ram Restaurant & Brewery in Seattle won gold in the golden or blonde ale category, and C.B. & Potts Restaurant & Brewery won a gold for a German-style pilsner made at its Fort Collins, CO, location. C.B. & Potts also took the gold in the Pro-Am competition.

Rick Lyke
Rick Lyke writes about beer, wine and spirits in his blog, Lyke2Drink.