The second edition of The Lester Cup Brew Off is kicking off today and will be pitting five local Spokane breweries against each other in an epic (but pretty friendly) battle. Last Summer's inaugural competition featured SMaSH (single malt and single hop) beers and was won by Mountain Lakes Brewing. For the winter competition, however, the featured beer style will be Strong Ales, a somewhat generic term for generally dark amber-colored ales which feature malt-forward sweetness in the 5.5-8% ABV range. Some well known American examples include Arrogant Consordia's flagship Arrogant Bastard, Fremont Brewing's B-Bomb Winter Ales, and Lagunitas Brewing's Brown Shugga'. It's a style that is wide open to interpretation, so I'm definitely excited to see what the participating breweries come up with.
To participate, stop by one of the 5 participating breweries - Mountain Lakes, Bellwether, The Grain Shed, Whistle Punk and Black Label - to pick up your ballot. Stop by each of the breweries to sample their entry and get your ballot stamped. When you've tried them all, you can vote for your favorite. Voting runs from February 1st though March 15th, so you have plenty of time to get to all of them. Good luck to everyone involved and may the best beer win. Cheers! 🍻🍻🍻