Golden Goblets 2011

2011 was yet another great year. The highlight was obviously the addition of a second little one to our family. This blissful year didn’t really carry over to the blog though. I have a back-log of grilled treats I would like to share since the grill was fired up quite a lot (not so much in the last few months). On the beery side though I really didn’t accomplish much, and my Golden Goblet picks reflect that. I had to drop several categories from last year because I simply couldn’t come up with any winners due to a “lack of entries”.

  • Best Belgian Beer – Orval (see pub of the year)
  • Best International BeerVerdi imperial stout
  • Best Homebrew I made in 2011Road Runner Rebel Stout
  • Best Beer induced Experience – working at the Alvinne Craft Beer Festival
  • Best Beer Graphic(s) – this was a tough one but I ended up going with the overall look of Red Brick Brewing’s new packaging. Too bad they didn’t carry these new graphics over to all parts of their brand, like their website. Work on that guys.
  • Worst Beer Graphic(s)Westvleteren Brick
  • Pub/Bar/cafe of the YearMelkerij. This is not a cafe you will find in any beer guide or hear about from any other beer geek. Its just not that kind of place… But in 2011 it was exactly what I needed. Its in the deep dark woods, has lots of outdoor seating and a massive playground. Yup, I said playground. With a baby and a toddler it wasn’t easy to get away and explore far off specialty bars, but when you can see your little girl having a ball on the slide while you and your baby sit in the dappled sunlight enjoying an Orval, those specialty bars just seem a bit ridiculous
  • Beer Festival of the YearAlvinne Craft Beer Festival
  • Beer Retailer of the YearDranken Geers. They have really done a good job in getting some of the better rare stuff and some great non-belgians. All for a good price too.
  • Best Beer Blog or WebsiteOh Beautiful Beer
  • Food and Beer Pairing of the YearPulled Pork, RodenQue sauce, and Rodenbach Grand Cru
  • Beer I’m most looking forward to in 2012New addition 2011
  • In 2012 I’d Most Like To – like last year, Brew on a real brewery system… perhaps another collaboration?
  • Open Category – This year the Open Category is awarded to the brewer who has done the least in 2011 and who really needs to get things going in 2012. I’m calling it the “Get your ducks in a row trophy,” and the winner is… (drum roll)… me!

Hope you had a good 2011 and hope you have an even better 2012!

another 2010 list

Its that time of the year when every beer blogger comes up with their  “Best Of” lists. I generally avoid such listings on my site, and I also avoid doing much beer reviewing since there are a thousand others doing that and they can actually write. However, for some strange reason I thought I’d give it a go this year. So it is time to unveil the inaugural 2010 Golden Goblet Awards! Some of you may be thinking that this sounds familiar, but I can assure you that any resemblance to other yearly blog-based awards is purely by coincidence. Sure there is that thing called the Golden Pint Award, but that’s completely different. First of all it’s British, and then there’s….. ok, it’s plagiarism, thievery, flattery or whatever you want to call it,

Hopefully some fellow Belgian beery-types will follow suit and post their Golden Goblets online as well. If you would like to participate, either add your winners in a comment here or post them on your own blog and post a link here. Feel free to add, delete, or change the categories and have some fun with the open category at the end.

…And now for my winners!

  • Best Belgian Draught/Cask Beer Saison Dupont… its just so damn drinkable! Alvinne Wild Undressed was a close second
  • Best Belgian Bottled BeerOerbier Reserva This beer knows how to please me!
  • Best International Draught/Cask Beer – Tough one, but perhaps Marble Decadence. I really enjoyed all the Marble cask beers at the Borefts Bierfestival… Damn fine beer
  • Best International Bottled Beer – Tied betweren Jolly Pumpkin Madrugada Obscura and Haandbryggeriet Dark Force
  • Best Beer based/induced Experience – Nocturnal Brew and BBQ at Alvinne
  • Best Beer LabelOdell’s St. Lupulin (I know it actually came out in 2009 but I didn’t see it then) Odell’s labels are great in general with their screen print style graphics. I’d love to have some large prints for my wall.
  • Best Belgian BreweryAlvinne. Maybe it’s because I took a class there, maybe it was the collaboration brew I did with them, maybe it’s for all they do for craft beer in Belgium, maybe it’s because thery’re real good guys, or maybe it’s just because they brew some good beer and don’t mind taking a risk. Expect big things from them in the future.
  • Best International BreweryJolly Pumpkin
  • Pub/Bar of the YearMoeder Lambic Fontainas
  • Beer Festival of the Year – First place goes to Pre-ZBF (from now on called the Alvinne Craft Beer Festival). Second place, De Molen’s Borefts Bierfestival
  • Beer Retailer of the YearAlvinne. not only do they brew beer but they have a shop filled with gems from around the world… and that doesn’t happen in Belgium
  • Best Beer Book or MagazinePete Brown‘s Hops and Glory (again, I was late with that one)
  • Best Beer Blog or Website – First place- The Mad Fermentationist (great source of brewing inspiration). Second place- Thirsty Pilgrim (that boy can write)
  • Most interesting online pressence for a brewery: Real Brewing at the Sharp End with the 52 brews project.
  • Food and Beer Pairing of the YearAlvino 2009 with smoked Pork Tenderloin
  • Beer I’m most looking forward to in 2011Brasserie Dupont’s Monk’s Stout
  • In 2011 I’d Most Like To…  Brew on a real brewery system… perhaps get a true Birdsong beer out there.
  • Open Category – I’m calling this the “Get On That” trophy (Goes to any beer or beer related thing that showed a lot of promise but just seemed to miss the mark. Also known as the “Better luck next year” trophy): unTappd. Far from perfect but this little app has been getting some use on my iPhone. It allows you to quickly post what you are drinking and where you are drinking it. If only it had a bit more social interaction and the ability to add a simple rating to ratebeer if you so desire… oh yeah, and throw in a dash of Pintley‘s reccomendations and Beercloud‘s food pairings, then you’ll have a winner (They all offer something, but none offer enough). So get on that unTappd peeps!