The 2021 Great American Beer Festival in Boulder, Colorado concluded and announced the winners in every category. Breweries from across the country won in multiple categories including several Illinois’ breweries. Some of these are well-known while others are up-and-coming breweries. Let’s dive into the different categories, the local champions, and their individual beverages.
Tribes Beer Company – Mokena
- Low Country Belgo-American Pale Ale – A 7.5% ABV with a lot of kick. Won silver for American-Belgo-Style Ale.
Alarmist Brewing – Chicago
- Midwest Royalty – A lightly colored American Lager with a 5.5% ABV. This lager won bronze for American-Style lager, a difficult style to achieve great taste and maintain a light-lager feel, and this should be celebrated exponentially.
Goose Island Beer Co. Fulton St. – Chicago
- Matilda – A 7.0% Belgian-Style Pale Ale brewed with the yeast Brettanomyces that gives it a unique flavor. Won bronze for Brett Beer.
Short Fuse Brewing Co. – Schiller Park
- Vocal Jam – A 5.5% ABV Fruit-Kettled Sour with boysenbery, blueberry, and coffee. Won silver for Experimental Beer.
- Tropical Hurt Locker – A 5.5% ABV Fruited Sour Ale with raspberry and passionfruit. Won silver for Fruited American Sour Ale.
Will County Brewing Co. – Shorewood
- Bamm Bamm Loves Pebbles – A 6% ABV fruity Wheat Ale. Won gold for Fruit Wheat Beer.
Tangled Roots Brewing Co. – Ottawa
- Sunkissed Blonde – A 5.2% ABV Blonde Ale. Won bronze for Fruit Wheat Beer.
Sew Hop’d Brewery – Huntley
- ALT 140 – A 7% ABV Dusseldorf-Style Altbier. Won silver or German-Styler Altbier.
Old Irving Brewing Co. -Chicago
- Della – A 5.2% ABV Kölsch with Zuper Saazer hoppes and others. Won silver for German-Style Kölsch.
Crystal Lake Brewing – Crystal Lake
- Too Much Cologne – A 5.2% ABV Kölsch with pear and white grape. Won bronze for German-Style Kölsch.
DESTIHL Brewery – Normal
- Haze of the Dead – An 8.5% ABV double IPA. Won bronze for Juicy or Hazy Imperial IPA
- TourBus – A 7.3% ABV IPA that won gold for Juicy or Hazy IPA!
Triptych Brewing – Savoy
- Dank Meme – A 5.3% ABV tropical and hoppy beer. Won bronze for Juicy or Hazy Pale Ale.
Pollyanna Brewing Co. – Lemont/Roselle
- Party Penguin – A 7.1% ABV malt liquor and won bronze for Other Strong Beer.
- Roselle Red – A 5% ABV red lager and won gold for Vienna-Style Lager!
Mickey Finn’s Brewery – Libertyville
- Dark and Down – A 5.9% ABV Schwarzbier with dark malts and won silver for Rye Beer.
Illinois took home 16 medals in total including three gold medals! Some of the most popular breweries in the Chicagoland area are well-represented here and it should give Chicagoans/Illinoisans pride! Across multiple categories, these Illinois’ breweries prove the diversity in our craft beer. From sours and ryes to red lagers and IPAs, the quality in these brews are showcased nicely.