The 9th annual The Dude’s Homebrew Competition on Sun, August 20th, 2023 was all about setting records. The most beers entered into the contest (35), the most money raised at the event ($7,328), and the most fun had by all who attended (subjective, but we think this is accurate). In other words, it was a resounding success!
Before we announce all of the winners, there are a lot of people that deserve recognition for their amazing contributions to this event, starting with our presenting sponsor, Resurgence Brewing Company. Simply put, we couldn’t hold this event without them, and this is the ninth year that they’ve graciously hosted our event (and our second time at the brewery on Chicago Street). Big thanks go out to Jeff Ware, Conner Bradbury, Brigid Taylor, and the whole Resurgence team for their generosity and kindness. Thank you, Resurgence!
Of course, we also couldn’t hold a homebrewing competition without homebrewers, and this year’s participants once again proved that Buffalo’s homebrewing community is second to none. The variety and quality of the beers served at the event was spectacular. Special shoutouts go out to the Niagara Association of Homebrewers and Sultans of Swig for their support of this event. Thank you, homebrewers!
A special thank you also goes out to our judges panel. These brewers are experts of their trade, and leant their knowledge and palate to tasting and rating a massive number of beers for us. This year’s panel featured Ethan Cox who you know from Community Beer Works, Karl Kolbe of Pressure Drop, and Jesse Kiser and Joe Mikos from Resurgence. Thank you, guys!
More thanks go out to Russ Burton, curator of the Lebowski-themed soundtrack to the event, and MC of festivities. Russ has been helping The Dude Hates Cancer with events since we started up in 2012, and we couldn’t be more grateful for it. Thank you, Russ!
Let’s give a round of applause to our in-kind sponsors, Premier and Premier Gourmet. They provided our printed materials, helped us promote the event, and helped us with day-of-the-event logistics. Thank you, Premier Group! Special thanks also go to Pizza Plant for donating some free beer tickets, which went to two lucky winners in our 50/50 raffle.
Speaking of the 50/50 raffle, let’s put our hands together for David and Tracey Gardon, our 50/50 raffle sales team! Since we met these two many years back at one of the early homebrew competitions, they’ve been offering to help us and we couldn’t be more grateful. Similarly, Meg Maxwell, Ellen Notarius, Eric Sliwinski, and Hunter Lane were essential to the event’s success, whether it be by helping get everything set up, manning our registration table, entering judges’ scores, tabulating fundraising totals, or all of the above. Thank you, David, Tracey, Meg, Slu, Ellen, and Hunter!
Thanks to Andy Morin of Avenir Cine for taking video and photos of the event (in addition to helping to brew two of the beers). If you need video work done in Buffalo, Andy is your guy (his studio space is incredible, I hear)!
Finally, thanks to everyone that attended, donated, and voted in this year’s competition!
As mentioned, there were 35 entries in this year’s competition — all donated by the brewers — and the quality of the beers was incredible. Some beers stood out, however.
The competition works like this. Our judges panel made up of expert brewers samples and scores all the beers, then chooses their three favorites for the Judges ‘Best in Show’ picks. Meanwhile, attendees that donate to the cause taste the beers and vote for their top three favorites. In the end, the winner is chosen by adding the average score from our judges’ panel to the vote tallies from attendees. Here’s how it all went:
Judges ‘Best in Show’ Selections:
- Fun Times at the Carnival – Saison (#32) (Brewers: Eric Tucker and Todd Kramer)
- Morse Code – Hazy IPA (#34) (Brewers: Michael Lane and Chad Chyreck)
- El Dorado Common – Cream Ale (#25) (Brewer: Gabe Tanyi)
- The Belge Lebrewski – Specialty Belgian IPA (#15) (Brewer: Dan Muffoletto)
Popular Vote Winners:
(3pts per 1st place vote, 2pts per 2nd place vote, 1pt per 3rd place vote)
- Hefe Another Bite – German Wheat Beer (#20) (Brewer: Jennifer Hare) – 73pts
- Fun Times at the Carnival – Saison (#32) (Brewers: Eric Tucker and Todd Kramer) – 53 pts
- “…this isn’t ‘Nam!’ – Fruit and Spice Beer (Brewers: Stumblin’ Falls Homebrew Club) – 48pts
Overall Winners (combined Judges + Pop. Vote):
- Hefe Another Bite – German Wheat Beer (#20) (Brewer: Jennifer Hare) – 98pts
- Fun Times at the Carnival – Saison (#32) (Brewers: Eric Tucker and Todd Kramer) – 92.5 pts
- “…this isn’t ‘Nam!’ – Fruit and Spice Beer (Brewers: Stumblin’ Falls Homebrew Club) – 83pts
Thanks again to everyone that made this possible. We look forward to seeing you again next year!