Before I entered into the wondrous realm that is craft beer, I was completely oblivious to the notion of beer festivals. Fortunately, I am extremely lucky to live in the home state of Beer Advocate where the Alstrom Brothers have blessed Boston with three outstanding beer festivals: American Craft Beer Festival, Belgian Beer Fest and the Extreme Beer Fest. I have had the opportunity to attend/volunteer at the American Craft Beer Festival, escort my lovely wife to Belgian Beer Festival, and with luck, will be attending this year's Extreme Beer Festival.
Although these East-Coast festivals provide an excellent arena for the growth of the craft beer industry, they are far cry from the scope and depth at which the Great American Beer Festival operates. Founded in 1982, The Great American Beer Festival was the brain child of craft beer legend, Charlie Papazian. During this initial festival, GABF was held in the beautiful mountain community of Boulder, Colorado but now resides in Denver, Colorado. It is definitely a "beer goal" of mine to make the journey west to bask in this truly mesmerizing beer culture. This year's festival ended this past weekend and I thought I would pass along the Winners List, so you can begin the search to find award winning beer in your state.