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The Results Are In; The Winner of SugarBrew’s Best in Show is Oskar Blues’ G Night Imperial Red IPA

by Madison V. Fisler

Aug. 4, 2014. The results are in from SugarBrew’s Best in Show beer competition that was held during the annual festival on Saturday, Aug. 2. Oskar Blues’ G Night Imperial, a high gravity beer that is brewed in Colorado took home first place in a contest that came with fierce competition from 23 total breweries.

From 1-5 p.m., a panel of judges sipped their way through 59 craft brews in six different categories to determine the winners of this year’s competition. Entries for the competition were judged on appearance, smell, taste, aftertaste and drinkability. The beer categories included High Gravity, Ale, Pilsner, Lager, Porter & Stout and Wheat.

The top three finishers in each category are listed below, courtesy of Sugar Mountain Resort.

Best in Show

  1. Oakar Blues Brewery – G Night Imperial Red IPA
  2. Oakar Blues Brewery – Dan’s Pale Ale
  3. Aviator Brewing Company – Saison de Aviator

High Gravity

  1. Oskar Blues Brewery – G Night Imperial Red IPA
  2. Highland Brewing Company – Scotch Ale
  3. Aviator Brewing Company – Devil’s Tromping Ground


  1. Oskar Blues Brewery – Old Chub Nitro
  2. Aviator Brewing Company – Saison de Aviator
  3. Oskar Blues Brewery – Dale’s Pale Ale


  1. Appalachian Mountain Brewery – Crooked Common
  2. Dry County Brewing Company – Exhibit A
  3. Old Hickory Brewery – Ruby Lager


  1. Abita Brewing Company – Seersucker Pilsner
  2. Oskar Blues Brewery – Mama’s Little Yella Pilsner


  1. Lone Rider Brewing Company – Shotgun Betty
  2. Highland Brewing Company – Razor Wit
  3. Catawba Brewing Company – White Zombie

Porters and Stouts

  1. Oskar Blues Brewery – Ten Fiddy Imperial Stout
  2. Appalachian Mountain Brewery – Black Gold
  3. Highland Brewing Company – Oatmeal Porter

SugarBrew was once again a massive success, drawing locals and out-of-towners to the mountaintop to enjoy some delicious brews, wines and spirits; yummy eats; great live music and camaraderie that just can’t be beat.

“I would say there were probably 500-700 people who attended this year,” said Kim Jochl, Vice President of Sugar Mountain Resort and Director of Marketing and Merchandising.

“The breweries and distilleries and wineries were really happy with the way things went. They feel that this event is growing and the people that were at the festival were happy to have a good summer festival to go to. Some people didn’t even come to drink any of the samples, they just came to sit and enjoy the food and the music with their friends.”

With a soggy forecast up until the morning of the event, attendees were surprised with beautiful weather for SugarBrew, which made for happy locals and out-of-towner guests.

After yet another success with this event, the Sugar Mountain Resort team is already looking ahead to the future.

“Next year’s event will be held on Saturday, Aug. 1, 2015,” Jochl said. “We have definitely been thinking about ways to make it bigger and more enticing for everyone to have something to come for. There will be even more additions to make it more fun next year. The beer contest just continues to grow each year, this year we even changed the contest by having two groups of judges with one group judging preliminaries and then a group that judged the finals. Next year, we will have three groups because there are so many types of beers that get entered into the six categories.”

Overall, this year’s SugarBrew went off without a hitch and gives Sugar Mountain Resort yet another successful festival to have under its belt.

“From my experience, when you have a brand new event that you are starting from ground zero, it takes a few years to get off the ground. As we grow and create a good festival and a good feel, that really lays the foundation for how the future years will go.”

For more information about SugarBrew and the Best in Show Competition, click here. 

But just because SugarBrew is over doesn’t mean the fun stops at Sugar Mountain Resort. Ski lift rides are still running through Aug. 31 and be sure to keep in mind the next great festival brought to you by Sugar Mountain Resort: Oktoberfest! The 23rd annual festival will take place Oct. 11-12.

Photos by Ken Ketchie









The winners