One of Cincinnati's oldest craft brewers wins prestigious national award

Dec 21, 2016, 1:43pm EST Updated Dec 21, 2016, 3:00pm EST
One of Cincinnati's oldest craft brewers, Listermann Brewing Co., won two p restigious awards at a national beer competition in November.
Listermann/Triple Digit won both first place for specialty/experimental bee r and best in show at the Festival of Wood and Barrel Aged Beers (FOBAB) in Chicago for its barrel-aged Chickow! hazelnut brown ale. The annual festiv al put it alongside such national craft beer contenders as Bell's Brewery, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and Goose Island.
Listermann/Triple Digit won best in show and best experimental beer at the 2016 Festival of Wood and Barrel Aged Beers. ? Enlarge
Listermann/Triple Digit won best in show and best experimental beer at the 2016 Festival? more
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It's not the first time Listermann has won a national award for its beer ? it took home bronze for its Nutcase Peanut Butter Porter at the G reat American Beer Festival (GABF) in 2014 ? but general manager Ja son Brewer told me it was more significant.
"We like it because our beers don't really fit into categories. We've won G ABF medals before, but those categories (110 of them) are narrower, and muc h more subject to certain judges' biases," Brewer said. "I've been a beer n erd before I started over here, and FOBAB was always the pinnacle of what b eer nerds wanted."
Brewer said it might be coincidence but it always seems that the Listermann beers that win awards are brewed on old dairy equipment. As a small brewer y with no outside investors, Listermann needed to get equipment on the chea p, so as dairy farms went out of business during and after the Great Recess ion, the brewery would buy up the dairy tanks.
"Maybe it's a good luck charm, maybe it's those old cow farmers wishing us the best," Brewer said. "I always say I'd rather be lucky than good, but we 're a combination of both."
The barrel-aged Chickow! is currently in barrel and will be available to co nsumers at the Listermann taproom in February or March of 2017.
Brownfield covers retail and restaurants, technology, manufacturing and cou rts.
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