On Saturday, October 8, Iron Hill Brewery and Restaurant earned its 45th medal at the Great American Beer Festival (GABF), extending its record-setting 20-year consecutive winning streak, the longest by a craft brewery in GABF history. Cheers to Founders Kevin Finn, Mark Edelson and Kevin Davies.
Iron Hill’s award-winning beer, Bridge Street Bock, was brewed by Matt Gundrum, the head brewer at their Phoenixville, Pa., location. The beer earned a bronze medal in the Bock category, its second GABF medal; it also earned a World Beer Cup (WBC) bronze in 2014 under the name Bock. Iron Hill’s 20-year run is the longest by a craft brewer and represents an unprecedented history of excellence. In addition to its success at GABF, Iron Hill has long been recognized as an innovator in the hospitality industry and earned the coveted “World Champion Brewpub” title at the WBC three times and Brewpub of the Year title at GABF once.
In 1997, the first year Iron Hill participated at GABF, there were only 1,700 total beers entered in the competition, from just 400 breweries nationwide in only 50 categories. In 2016, an estimated 7,227 total beers were submitted and judged at GABF, from 1,752 breweries nationwide in 95 categories — an astronomical jump that further proves Iron Hill’s dedication and commitment to brewing the highest quality beer.
“Our established history of earning national awards for our beers, along with our many repeat wins such as Bridge Street Bock, is a testament to the exceptional quality and consistency of our beers as a result of standards set by our brewers,” says Iron Hill’s Director of Brewing Operations Mark Edelson. “Each of our 12 locations has their own individual head brewer each of whom brews world class beer day in and day out. We’re proud to recognize our winners and congratulate them as they carry on our winning ways.”
Iron Hill has earned 45 medals in 20 consecutive years at GABF. Their most award-winning beers include:
Russian Imperial Stout, a full-bodied stout that starts with a complex, malt-y sweet, high-roasted character, balanced with the use of citrus-y American hops
- 2003 GABF gold; 2006 GABF gold; 2006 WBC bronze; 2010 GABF gold; 2010 WBC gold; 2011 GABF silver; 2012 WBC gold; 2012 GABF bronze; 2013 GABF silver; 2014 WBC gold; 2015 GABF silver; 2016 WBC silver
Bedotter, a traditional Belgian-style golden ale with complex aroma and notes of plum, spice and banana, with refreshing balanced bitterness
- 2002-2004 GABF bronzes, 2014 GABF silver; 2016 WBC gold
The Cannibal, a golden Belgian-style ale with complex flavors and a dry finish accented by a nose of tropical fruit and dry spice
- 2005 GABF gold; 2006 WBC silver; 2015 GABF silver
Lambic du Hill, a traditional, unfiltered Belgian-style lambic made with wild yeast and bacteria and aged in oak barrels for two years for aromas of banana, oak, and hay and a nutty flavor with refreshing sourness
- 2003 GABF gold; 2008 GABF gold; 2010 WBC bronze