20 Great American Beer Fest Winners You've Never Heard Of

Put these 20 emerging craft brewers on your must-drink list. Credit: Photo © Brewers Association

The Great American Beer Festival is the single biggest competition for U.S. brewers, and the winners bask in the knowledge that the country's preeminent judges declared their ales and lagers the best. In 2015, more than 1,500 breweries sent in a total of 6,647 entries to vie for just 92 categories. Impressively, four craft brewers walked away with three medals each — Firestone Walker, Sun King, Port City, and Left Hand Brewing. But what we're most excited about are the dozens of small, up-and-coming brewers that nabbed awards. Of the gold medalists, here are 20 new-to-us and soon-to-be famous brewers we can't wait to try, along with the winning beers and categories.

7th Settlement Brewery, Dover, NH          
1623 Brown Ale, American-Style Brown Ale 

Bottle Logic Brewing, Anaheim, CA
Lagerithm, American-Style Dark Lager

Logboat Brewing Co., Columbia, MO          
Bear Hair, Belgian-Style Blonde Ale or Pale Ale 

Jailbreak Brewing Co., Laurel, MD  
Van Dammit, Belgian-Style Strong Specialty Ale 

Champion Brewing Co., Charlottesville, VA
Shower Beer, Bohemian-Style Pilsener 

Lion Bridge Brewing Co., Cedar Rapids, IA
Disaster at Meux, Brown Porter

Brothers Craft Brewing, Harrisonburg, VA
Mild, English-Style Mild Ale 

Exile Brewing, Des Moines, IA        
Gigi, European-Style Dark/Münchner Dunkel 

New Helvetia Brewing Co., Sacramento, CA          
Mystery Airship Imperial Chocolate Porter, Experimental Beer

Gibb's Hundred Brewing Co., Greensboro, NC      
The Guilty Party, Extra Special Bitter 

Fonta Flora Brewery, Morganton, NC        
Beets, Rhymes and Life, Field Beer 

Fair Winds Brewing Co., Lorton, VA
Siren's Lure, French- and Belgian-Style Saison 

Reuben's Brews Taproom, Seattle, WA      
Gose, German-Style Sour Ale 

Platform Beer Co., Cleveland, OH  
Black Eagle Gratzer, Historical Beer 

Grimm Artisanal Ales, Brooklyn, NY
Double Negative, Imperial Stout 

Alvarado Street Brewery & Grill, Monterey, CA    
Mai Tai P.A., International-Style Pale Ale 

Garage Brewing Co. & Pizzeria, Temecula, CA      
Bucket Seat Blonde, Munich-Style Helles 

Spangalang Brewery, Denver, CO
Spangalang Table Beer, Other Belgian-Style Ale 

West O Beer, West Okoboji, IA        
West O CocO, Sweet Stout or Cream Stout 

Wander Brewing, Bellingham, WA
Wild Warehouse, Wood- and Barrel-Aged Beer