GABF Brewer Interview- Tyler from @portsbrew

Now that the dust is settling from the Great American Beer Festival, I thought I would check in with the brewers at the Portsmouth Brewery to see how the festival was and ask a few other questions to help those, like me, who couldn’t make the trip but are saving their pennies for next year. Here is some feedback from Assistant Brewer Tyler!

How was the overall experience?

Tyler: Well any GABF that you go to and get medals is an amazing experience. Denver is a great town and very easy to walk about and check out all the brewpub/bars/restaurants. The Alpha King happens at the Falling Rock tap house every year during the GABF. Alpha King is an IPA competition, which we didn’t come away with anything. But the left over IPA’s from the judging were passed around to everyone there, plus great networking happens over a quite a few 1/4 pints.

Do you find more people appreciate festival or are there a lot of people abusing the festival to get inebriated?

Tyler: The need for inebriation is there like most festivals, depending on which session you attend. the Friday night and Saturday night sessions turn into a bit of a frat house. Though, Thursday night and the members only session on Saturday afternoon are the best for people really looking to try and understand the thousands of beers there. Plus, on Saturday they give out the medals and there is a mad rush for everyone to try the medal winning brews. It is great to be able to explain the beers we brought to the people who are truly interested in what they are made of and the brewing process of each brew.

Whats the process to submit a beer for judging?

Tyler: The process for submitting beer is a very well organized. We received a list of the judging category with the full description of how each beer is going to be judged. here is a list of the categories . So we decided which beers we want to send and brew them up. We send 4 22 oz bottles two day air to the AB plant in Colorado which is the collection point for all the beers from all over the country.

Any other beers you were considering entering in the future? Perhaps the Black IPA or Gose (new personal favorites of mine)?

Tyler: Your palette is well trained. We are planning on sending the Gose next year. The Black IPA would be entered into a new category that was just created this year. Category 58. American Style India Black Ale. But the IPA categories are the hardest to win. The IPA category had 140+ entries this year! So we will decided what other beers we send a little closer to next years fest.

What were your favorite Beers at the festival?

Tyler: Beers i tried at the festival, man there were too many to count. and i didn’t keep an master list of ones i tried. Though i was on a big sour kick and have some great ones from all over the country. some the of breweries i tried were Cascade Brewing Company, New Belgium, Odells, Captin Lawerance, Kuhehenn, Moyland’s, Lost Abby, New Glarus, Piece, Pizza Port Carlsbad to name a few. Basically i was trying to try beers from breweries i can’t get locally, which is really what you should be doing a brew festival of any kind.

Big thanks to Tyler, who is resting after some ACL surgery. Hoping for fast healing!