NOLA Brewing's Kirk Coco at the NBWA Product Demonstration Showcase.
Last week, Louisiana was well represented at two national beer industry events: the National Beer Wholesalers Association
’s (NBWA) annual conference, which was held in New Orleans, and the 33rd Great American Beer Festival
(GABF) in Denver, Colorado.
The NBWA is an advocacy organization for beer distributors (like Southern Eagle Distributing
and Crescent Crown Distributing
in New Orleans) focused on the three-tier system of laws regulating distribution of beer from producers to retailers, including bars, restaurants and stores.
Four Louisiana breweries (NOLA Brewing
, Tin Roof Brewing Company
, Bayou Teche Brewing
and Great Raft Brewing
) exhibited at the product demonstration showcase for distributors. In addition, one conference discussion panel included John Williams, executive director of the Beer Industry League of Louisiana
, which works on behalf of Louisiana beer distributors, who discussed the three-tier system’s original purpose of promoting public health, safety and temperance.
GABF is sponsored by the Brewers Association and it focuses on breweries. Abita
, Bayou Teche, NOLA Brewing and Old Rail Brewing Company
all poured at GABF. Old Rail attended the festival for the first time and poured its flagship beers. The new NOLA sours Piety and Lowerline got a lot of attention from attendees and Bayou Teche’s Teche Hombre barrel-aged agave beer also proved popular.
But the biggest news was that Abita won a medal for the second year in a row: a bronze in the German-style marzen category for its new Octoberfest. Director of Brewing Operations Jaime Jurado says the beer, which replaced Abita's Fall Fest this year, is hoppier than its predecessor, but still in the traditional Octoberfest beer style. Last year, Abita won a silver medal in the GABF bock category for Andygator.