Saturday, March 22, 2008

Elite 8 madly announced

[UPDATE 2008.04.07: Winner announced!]

The 3rd round of the Washington Post's Beer Madness has been announced: out of 32 beers, an elite 8 remain.

And of the 8 local beers originally selected—meaning those from Baltimore, D.C., Virginia, and Delaware—4 remain, thus making up 50% of the semifinalists.

Last year's winner—Brooklyn Lager—was eliminated by local boy Flying Dog Old Scratch Lager.

And, yes, Flying Dog is indeed DC/Maryland local. The former Denver, Colorado brewery has moved its brewing operations into the old Frederick/Blue Ridge Brewing digs in Frederick, Maryland.

The local beers, still standing, are, in no particular order:

  • Raven Lager
  • Oxford Raspberry Wheat
  • Hook and Ladder Backdraft Brown
  • Flying Dog Old Scratch
This non-scientific competition is for bottled beer only: no draft, or casks, or even growlers of brewpub beers for that matter.

Another aspect of the format has confused many observers. The beers are being judged, and advanced or eliminated, by ten panelists previously selected by the Washington Post. The website, however, shows the tally for the on-line (non-binding)voting, which in many cases contradicts those results. For next year's competition, I would suggest that the Post select only 9 judges, and use the on-line votes as the '10th' judge.

[UPDATE 2008.03.30: Baltimore, Maryland's Oxford Raspberry Wheat lost to Cooperstown, New York's Ommegang Hennepin; Frederick Maryland's Flying Dog Old Scratch lost to Baltimore, Maryland's Raven Lager; Boston, Massachusett's Samuel Adams Honey Porter lost to Silver Spring, Maryland's Hook and Ladder Backdraft Brown.]

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