San Diego's North Park Beer Wins Brewery Of The Year Award At Great American Beer Festival

October 8, 2022

San Diego's North Park Beer was the recipient of a Brewery of the Year award at the annual Great American Beer Festival, where local craft breweries won 15 medals at the prestigious brewing event.

This weekend, 2022 Great American Beer Festival competition took place and awarded 300 medals to the best commercial craft breweries in the United States. Presented by the Brewers Association, the annual event is the nation’s largest professional beer competition and is considered the premier symbol of brewing excellence. Award-winning breweries received prestigious gold, silver, and bronze medals in 98 beer categories covering 177 different beer styles (including all subcategories). The awards ceremony was held at the Bellco Theatre in Denver during the 40th anniversary Great American Beer Festival.

After a two year hiatus for in-person attendance due to the pandemic, GABF returned to the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, CO this weekend where thousands of attendees enjoyed sampling many styles of craft beer over the three day event. This year, San Diego County-based brewers received a total of 15 medals, including four bronze, eight silver, and three gold. San Diego big bring back award was certainly the illustrious Brewery of the Year award for brewing companies producing 2,001 to 5,000 barrels per year that went to North Park Beer Co., which also won a gold, silver and two bronze medals at the event. 

North Park Beer Company was first operated out of founder Kelsey McNair's garage before the full-scale brewery unveiled in mid-2016 on the craft-beer saturated University Avenue in the heart of San Diego's North Park. As a home brewer, McNair racked up prestigious awards with his Hop-Fu! IPA becoming the most award-winning home brew recipe in state history. Last September, North Park Beer's Art is Hard Hazy IPA won a silver medal at the prestigious Great American Beer Festival. North Park Brewing Company recently broke ground on the company's first satellite tasting room on the base floor of Secoya by the Park, a mixed-use building being constructed by Bishop Ventures on the corner of 5th Avenue and Redwood Street in Bankers Hill.

In addition to North Park Beer Co., more than a dozen other San Diego-based craft breweries received awards at the 2022 GABF, including Rouleur Brewing in Carlsbad, BNS Brewing in Santee, Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens Liberty Station, Gravity Heights in Sorrento Mesa, Mother Earth Brew Co. in Vista, Bagby Beer in Oceanside, Athletic Brewing in Miramar, Kilowatt Brewing in Kearny Mesa, Pizza Port in Ocean Beach, Societe Brewing in Kearny Mesa, and The Lost Abbey in San Marcos. 

The competition took place in three phases over a period of nine days and was judged by 235 beer experts from seven countries, including the U.S. In addition to 9,904 commercial brewery entries, the judging panel also evaluated 35 Pro-Am entries and 94 Collaboration entries. 

The full list of San Diego Great American Beer Festival award winners in below:

2,001–5,000 Barrels Brewery and Brewer of the Year
North Park Beer Co., North Park, San Diego, CA

Gold Medals:
English India Pale Ale or New Zealand India Pale Ale: NZ-FU! from North Park Beer Co. in North Park; Belgian-style Ale or French-style Ale: Domestique Blonde Ale from Rouleur Brewing in Carlsbad;
Strong Red Ale: My Bloody Nightmare, BNS Brewing & Distilling in Santee.

Silver Medals:
Juicy or Hazy Imperial India Pale Ale: X-Raying Citra from North Park Beer Co. in North Park;
American Black Ale or American Stout: Stone Cimmerian Portal from Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens - Liberty Station in Point Loma;
English-style Brown Ale: Three Beagles from Bagby Beer Co. in Oceanside;
English Mild or Bitter: Brewer’s Best from Gravity Heights in Sorrento Mesa;
Imperial India Pale Ale: Hop Diggity, Mother Earth Brew Co. in Vista;
Session India Pale Ale: The Coachman, Societe Brewing in Kearny Mesa;
Session Beer or Belgian-style Table Beer: Guillame, Pizza Port in Ocean Beach;
Specialty Beer: Maple Smoked Maibock, Kilowatt Brewing in Kearny Mesa;
Non-alcohol Beer: Lemon Radler, Athletic Brewing in Miramar.

Bronze Medals:
American India Pale Ale: Hop-Fu! from North Park Beer Co. in North Park;
Imperial India Pale Ale: Double-Fu! from North Park Beer Co. in North Park;
Fruited Wood- and Barrel-aged Sour Beer: Peach Afternoon from The Lost Abbey in San Marcos;
2022 Collaboration Competition: Guns Out For Grains Out from Pizza Port Ocean Beach, Chula Vista Brewery, Karl Strauss Brewing in Pacific Beach & Nickel Beer Co. in Julian, CA. 

See the full list of GABF award winners here