Last week, City Wide Liquors (Jefferson St. location) held a craft beer tasting that included Dogfish Head, Bare Hands Brewing (Granger), and New Paradigm Brewing (Elkhart), and more. An extra feature of this event was a blind tasting of twelve different hoppy beers including both IPAs and pale ales. It was conducted using a point system in which all participants were able to rank the beers that they were drinking. And since they were rating beers not knowing exactly what beer they were tasting, City Wide was able to reach a conclusion that was free of associations and assumptions about brands and brewery names.
The winners were (insert drum roll here):
1st Place: Three Floyds Zombie Dust - 52 points
2nd Place: Bell's Two Hearted - 29 points
3rd Place: Tie between Founder's Centennial and Dark Horse Crooked Tree - 23 points
In some respects, the results are not surprising - all four winners are very solid beers. However, I think it is a great activity, since quite often we buy beer by brand name and others opinions, rather than what our taste buds really know.
The other beers included were as follows in ranking order:
Stone IPA - 22 pts, Two Brothers Side Kick - 17 pts, Green Flash West Coast IPA - 16 pts, New Holland Mad Hatter - 11 pts, Sam Adams Rebel IPA - 10 pts, Harpoon IPA - 8 pts, Boulevard Pop UP - 7 pts, and Brooklyn IPA - 7 pts.
I was unable to attend the event, but from a few attenders that I talked to, they all thought it was a great time. The only thing that I heard was that maybe twelve was just a few too many. But then, there are so many good hoppy beers out there, how do you choose who to leave out. This can be a really fun thing to do and a really good tool for you beer palate. I would highly recommend gathering some of you friends for a blind tasting with your favorite style.
To follow City Wide Liquors and other events that they host, check them out on Facebook