Monday, February 27, 2017

Thoughts on the National IPA Championship

Been following the Brewing News and their annual March Madness style National IPA Championship? I was a little late to the game, but I think I'm caught up now. It took me about a month to actually navigate the Brewing News' website to finally get to the brackets. The site itself may have been designed using someone's Earthlink account. And then, once you get to the brackets, you can't really look at the earlier rounds without seeing the winners from following rounds first, so some of the fun is lost. I understand this is how brackets look, but there should be a separate page where you click on the head to head matchups. And yes, I know I haven't changed anything on my site for 8 years.

Anyway, a few scattered thoughts:

I wish the system was broken into regions so NM breweries wouldn't have to face each other until later rounds.

Good to see 377 Brewery win their first round matchup against Eel River, though I think the last time I changed my website design was more recent than the last time I bought an Eel River beer.

No shame in Canteen's Exodus losing to Tamarack Brewing in the second round. Who? This Montana brewery may not be well known, but they won the Alpha King Challenge in 2016, and they're my dark horse for winning the whole thing.

Whoops. I realized I somehow missed that they lost in the third round. Well, maybe another Alpha King Challenge-winning brewery, Melvin, will win. Their Morris IPA is set to go against IPL, a LAGER from Jack's Abbey. Can't see a lager (as great as it is) beating Morris.

Then again, I couldn't see Tractor actually making it into the third round. Nice going! And even better, they somehow knocked off White Rajah, the 2015 GABF bronze medalist and probably on the short list for many degenerate gamblers. But they went down against Clark (who also knocked out Santa Fe's Snowflake in the 2nd), the hazy IPA from Quarter Celtic. But now Clark has to go up against Hopcelot from Lawson's Finest Liquids. Gulp.

Ponderosa made it out of the first round only to be brought down by NM IPA Challenge winner Bear Knuckle IPA from Boxing Bear. Bear Knuckle is all the way to the 4th round...

As is La Cumbre's former National IPA Champ Project Dank, which had to make it past Canteen's great Hopballer IPA in the third round. Tough one.

Scale Tipper also went down in the third round to a very tough opponent, Head Hunter from Fat Head's. Bosque, you guys had to let another brewery win sometime.

Sorry to see two Rio Bravo entries go out quick. Their two beers should have gone head to head. Everyone gets a trophy!

Hop Shovel from Bear Republic is a really good beer. Not surprised they've made it to the 4th.

Glad to see Dialogue win in the first round. Sorry to see Pi Brewing not.

Glad to see Chama enter a Kolsch in an IPA Challenge. Hey, if Jack's Abbey can make it 4 rounds with a lager...

Is everyone else just taking it for granted that of the 16 breweries remaining, THREE are from Albuquerque? I'd say this is a great time to live in Albuquerque...if it weren't for the damn ART construction.


Unknown said...
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Unknown said...

I'd love to see La Cumbre get another title for Project Dank!