FoBAB 2020: The One On YouTube

In Beer News by Karl

No festival? Bummer. No FoBAB 2020 medals? Inconcievable!

The show went on, in spite of the coronavirus that cancelled the full festival and in spite of technical livestream hiccups. FoBAB 2020 saw the nation’s brewing community take a step back from the usual three sessions at the UIC pavilion, and we all collectively cracked into a beer mid-afternoon on Sunday for the awards reveal.

This year’s round of winners had some fun surprises — a cider took Best in Show for the first time ever, and it’s always nice to see small, independent Illinois breweries take home hardware (Whiskey Hill, Urban Brew Labs, Soundgrowler) in addition to the more well-known barrel-aging programs (Revolution, MORE).

If you thought Destihl’s best days of sour making are behind them, think again — they earned another medal this weekend — and I’m always surprised to see Two Brothers acknowledged for anything at all these days (aside from poor rebranding efforts) but they nailed down a Bronze this year as well.

Illinois breweries did most of the talking this year when it comes to medals, but but a strong second showing came from Ohio with five medals headed back to the Buckeye State. This shouldn’t be a big surprise based on the regular turnout they get at GABF each year — and if you want to indulge in some truly special Experimental beers, get yourself to MadTree in Columbus, as they took home two of three in that category.

Porch Drinking has a good roundup available as well with some other takeaways. Sadly, our ABV Chicago FoBAB draft team fared … poorly.

The full list of medals as provided by the Illinois Craft Brewers Guild is as follows:

Best in Show:

  • Tin City Cider Co’s Malus at The Palace

Runner Up:

  • Whiskey Hill Brewing Co.’s Barrel-Aged Seismic Overlay

Strong Porter / Stout:

  • Gold: Mikerphone Brewing’s Sir Blends-A-Lot
  • Silver: More Brewing Co.’s Mehndi 2020
  • Bronze: Tangled Roots Brewing Co.’s Fancy Feline

Specialty Strong/Porter Stout

  • Gold: Whiskey Hill Brewing Co.’s Barrel-Aged Seismic Overlay
  • Silver: Streetside Brewery’s Horchata Demogorgon
  • Bronze: Maplewood Brewery & Distillery’s Barrel Aged Cuppa: Coconut Peanut Butter


  • Gold: Verboten Brewing and Barrel Project’s Cognac Grow Old With You
  • Silver: Reuben’s Brews’s Three Ryes Men
  • Bronze: Spiteful Brewing’s Barrel-Aged Belligerent Bob

Classic Beer Style

  • Gold: Nebraska Brewing Co.’s Blanc Is the New White
  • Silver: Church Street Brewing Co’s Holy Moly
  • Bronze: Soundgrowler Brewing Co.. Tequila BA Tortilla Hands

Strong Pale Beer

  • Gold: Horse Thief Hollow Brewing Co.’s Wrenly Rose
  • Silver: Allagash Brewing Co. Allagash Curieux
  • Bronze: Pollyanna Brewing Co. – Lemont’s Apple Brandy Barrel Aged Orenda Volume 03

Dark Strong Beer

  • Gold: Wellspent Brewing Company’s BAQ 2 BAQ
  • Silver: Half Acre Beer Co..’s Orin
  • Bronze: Urban Brew Labs’s ABBA G.O.A.T (Apple Brandy Barrel Aged Doppelbock)

Fruit Beer

  • Gold: Revolution Brewing’s Ten Year Beer
  • Silver: Derive Brewing Co.’s Sins of the Flesh with Raspberries
  • Bronze: Two Brothers Brewing Co.’s Quadrical!


  • Gold: Off Color Brewing – Mousetrap’s Rum Barrel Aged Sun Also Rises
  • Silver: MadTree Brewing Co.’s Cuvee 2020
  • Bronze: MadTree Brewing Co.’s Joon – Chamomile & Elderflower

Wild Beer/Brett

  • Gold; Alesong Brewing and Blending’s Touch of Brett
  • Silver: Wolf’s Ridge Brewing’s Terre du Sauvage Green
  • Bronze: Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.’s Alpha Hop Society Brett Saison

Wild Beer (Acidic) Sours

  • Gold: DESTIHL Brewery’s St. Dekkera Reserve Series Flanders Oud Bruin
  • Silver: Imperial Oak Brewing’s Savage Oak – Gold
  • Bronze: Half Acre Beer Co. – Lincoln Ave’s Cliffs

Wild Beer (Acidic) Sours with Fruit

  • Gold: The Lost Abbey’s Pale Horse
  • Silver: Penrose Brewing Co.’s Wild 26
  • Bronze: 10 Barrel Brewing’s Sir Bois


  • Gold: Tin City Cider Co’s Malus at The Palace
  • Silver: Superstition Meadery’s San Simón
  • Bronze: Haymaker Meader’s Heavy Cherry

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About the Author



Karl has written about food, travel and beer for Chicago Magazine, Thrillist, Time Out Chicago, AskMen and more. His book, Beer Lovers Chicago, is now available via Amazon and other booksellers.If you're buying, he's likely having a porter or a pale ale.

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