Lone Tree walks away from GABF with gold and silver; Colorado takes 38 medals overall

Photos - Neill Pieper

By Joe Ross

Lone Tree Brewing Co. continued to show its brewing mettle, winning gold and silver in the Great American Beer Festival competition over the weekend. With high praise and more beer choices than ever, the 2017 GABF jumped into the record books with a load of mind-blowing results, especially from Colorado.

The 38th state was awarded 38 medals, the second most of any state in the competition. Medal winning is never taken lightly at a competition in which each category includes an average of 81 competitors. California, which has nearly twice as many breweries as Colorado, took home the most medals at 56.  

Nationwide, 2,217 breweries faced off for 293 medals.

Lone Tree won gold for its Mexican Lager and silver for its Hop Zombie, an imperial red ale.

Odyssey Beerwerks in Arvada earned a silver medal in the highly competitive “Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer” category with its Woods Monk. There were 175 competitors to fend off.

The most crowded category, as it has been for 15 years, was the American Style IPA, where 408 entries competed for medals.

The full list of GABF winners is found here. Colorado winners below.

Although growth in the craft brewing industry has slowed, it’s still going strong, according to Bob Pease, CEO of the Brewers Association that is based in Boulder. During a pre-GABF brunch hosted by Samuel Adams last week, Pease said although “big beer,” such as A-B InBev based in Belgium, has taken over some craft breweries, most are moving forward with gusto. And, craft breweries use mostly local ingredients and provide jobs in local communities. Brewers Association economist Bart Watson pointed out that farmers grew a record number of hops in the U.S. last year. All of this adds up to a growing interest in the craft scene and the annual festival.

The GABF competition also saw Colorado steal the show in the Pro-Am Competition, in which homebrewers work with breweries to “scale up the award-winning homebrew recipes,” the Brewers Association reports.

The winners, including the winning professional brewers and American Homebrewers Association member homebrewers were:

  • Gold: Just Another Pretty Face, Denver Beer Co. Brewmaster: Jason Buehler and Denver Beer Company Brewing team; Homebrewer: Doug Thiel
  • Silver: Lichtenhainer, Black Bottle Brewery. Brewmaster: Black Bottle Scuba Squad;  Homebrewer: Daniel Tomkins
  • Bronze: Eluxansis, Odell Brewing Co. Brewmaster: Odell Brew Team; Homebrewer: Mark Boelman

Following are a few other Brewers Association stats from the competition:

  • 266 medal-winning breweries
  • 293 total medals awarded
  • 7,923 beers judged (not including 118 Pro-Am competition entries)
  • 98 beer categories covering 161 different beer styles judged, plus the Pro-Am competition

Overall, 60,000 people attended, as has been the case for the past several years. More than 4,300 volunteers helped make the festival fun for attendees.


Colorado Medal Winners
Sorted by - Medal, Beer Name, Brewery, City, Category

Gold - F-Town Amber - Copper Club Brewing Co., Fruita - American-Style Amber/Red Ale

Silver - Black 28 - Cannonball Creek Brewing Co., Golden - American-Style Black Ale

Gold - Razz Against the Machine - Little Machine, Denver - American-Style Fruit Beer

Gold - Mexican Lager - Lone Tree Brewing Co., Lone Tree - American-Style Lager or Malt Liquor

Silver - Lemon Rye - 105 West Brewing Co., Castle Rock - American-Style Wheat Beer

Silver - Suntrip - New Terrain Brewing Co., Golden - Belgian-Style Witbier

Bronze - Blackberry Table Sour - Baere Brewing Co., Denver - Berliner-Style Weisse

Bronze - Mountain Series: Maibock - Breckenridge Brewery, Littleton - Bock

Gold - Fancy Pants - Jessup Farm Barrel House, Fort Collins - Brett Beer

Silver - Saison Trystero - Our Mutual Friend Brewing, Denver - Brett Beer

Gold - Saison - Funkwerks, Fort Collins - Classic Saison

Gold - Punjabi - CooperSmith's Pub & Brewing - Fort Collins - English-Style India Pale Ale

Silver - Roswell: Grudge - Black Project Spontaneous & Wild Ales, Denver - Experimental Beer

Bronze - Little Red Cap - Grimm Brothers Brewhouse, Loveland - German-Style Altbier

Bronze - Downhill Kölsch - Elk Mountain Brewing Co., Parker - German-Style Koelsch

Silver - Pilsner - Dry Dock Brewing Co. - South Dock, Aurora - German-Style Pilsener

Bronze - India Spring Honey Cream Ale - Broken Plow Brewery, Greeley - Herb and Spice Beer

Gold - Waverly Tulip - Square Peg Brewerks, Alamosa - Historical Beer

Silver - Hilltopper's Pride Kentucky Common Ale - Ironworks Brewery & Pub, Lakewood - Historical Beer

Silver - Hop Zombie - Lone Tree Brewing Co., Lone Tree - Imperial Red Ale

Gold - Galaxy Dry Hopped Funk Yo Couch - Wiley Roots Brewing Co., Greeley - Mixed-Culture Brett Beer

Silver - Moondoor Dunkel - Wibby Brewing, Longmont - Munich-Style Dunkel or European-Style Dark Lager

Bronze - Dunkel - Pug Ryan's Brewing Co., Dillon - Munich-Style Dunkel or European-Style Dark Lager

Gold - Just Another Pretty Face - Denver Beer Co., Denver - Pro-Am

Silver - Lichtenhainer - Black Bottle Brewery, Fort Collins - Pro-Am

Bronze - Eluxansis - Odell Brewing Co., Fort Collins - Pro-Am

Silver - Peacekeeper - Launch Pad Brewery, Aurora - Session Beer

Silver - Patio Pounder - Twisted Pine Brewing Co., Boulder - Session India Pale Ale

Gold - So long and thank's for all the (smoked) fish! - The Sandlot Brewery at Coors Field, Denver - Smoke Beer

Gold - Hefeweizen - Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant - Navy Yard, Broomfield -South German-Style Hefeweizen

Silver - Make Hay - Cellar West Artisan Ales, Boulder - Specialty Saison

Bronze - Farmhouse Saison - CO-Brew, Denver - Specialty Saison

Gold -Oatmeal Milk Stout -Finkel & Garf Brewing Co., Boulder - Sweet Stout or Cream Stout

Bronze - Woody Pils - Bull & Bush Brewery, Denver - Wood- and Barrel-Aged Beer

Gold - Plum Creek Sour - Rockyard American Grill & Brewing Co., Castle Rock - Wood- and Barrel-Aged Sour Beer

Bronze - 5th Anniversary Tequila Sour - Loveland Aleworks, Loveland - Wood- and Barrel-Aged Sour Beer

Silver - Woods Monk - Odyssey Beerwerks, Arvada - Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer

Gold - Medianoche - WeldWerks Brewing Co., Greeley - Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Stout