The Royals won big over the weekend, and so did a handful of Kansas and Missouri breweries at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver.
Boulevard Brewing Co. brought home two bronze medals: one for ZON Belgian-style witbier in the Belgian-style witbier category and another for Saison-Brett in the French- and Belgian-style saison category.
Topeka’s Blind Tiger Brewery & Restaurant won a gold medal in the herb and spice beer category for its Basil Beer. The Civil Life Brewing Co. in St. Louis won a gold medal in the rye beer category for its Rye Pale Ale, and Columbia’s Logboat Brewing Co. took silver in the English-style mild ale category with Mamoot Mild Ale.
Boulevard’s ZON, a summer seasonal introduced in 2001, is the Kansas City brewery’s most awarded beer. The witbier has won a total of six medals at the Great American Beer Festival, including bronze in 2003, gold in 2009, bronze in 2011, gold in 2012 and bronze in 2013.
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ZON was the first beer recipe Steven Pauwels drafted after becoming Boulevard’s brewmaster. Pauwels says he wanted to create a low-alcohol beer with a lot of flavor, so he used Belgian yeast, orange peel and coriander.
Pauwels, who is originally from Belgium, says he thinks ZON has won so many medals because it has all the characteristics of a Belgian-style witbier.
“It’s very typical Belgium,” Pauwels says. “That’s why it wins awards.”
The brewmaster says other popular Boulevard beers such as Tank 7 farmhouse ale don’t win as many awards because they don’t fit neatly into a category.
“It’s too hoppy for a saison,” Pauwels says. And that’s just how the brewmaster likes it.
Go to greatamericanbeerfestival.com to view the complete list of 2014 winners.
Contact Sarah Gish via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet @sarah_gish.