Barstool: High Point leads state at Great American Beer Fest


There’s no other way to put it: Brown Truck Brewery dominated.

Though still in its infancy after opening this spring, High Point’s Brown Truck Brewery just received more accolades than any other brewer in this sudsy state at the highly respected Great American Beer Festival in Colorado.

Seventeen North Carolina beers won medals at the festival, and nearly a third of those will be coming back to the Triad, including one each to past winners at Gibb’s Hundred in Greensboro and Foothills in Winston-Salem. But it’s Brown Truck that carried the day, nabbing three medals for its saison, American lager and hops with saison added.

That’s more than any other brewery in the Old North State, trailed by Lynnwood Brewing Concern in Raleigh Olde Hickory, which each won two beer medals this year. It isn’t just that Brown Truck placed, though — two of its beers won silver, and the American lager took gold, which is a really impressive showing.

Oh, and arguably more important than any of that, Brown Truck won a significant overarching category, being named the 2016 Very Small Brewing Company/Brewer of the Year.

That’s a BFD.

No other North Carolina ranked in those categories such as larger brewpub & large brewpub brewer of the year, which went to the Austin Beer Garden Brewing Co., despite some pretty incredible breweries throughout this state. Considering that North Carolina medaled 18 times at this year’s Great American Beer Festival, and almost 25 percent of those will return to High Point.

Brown Truck’s head brewer Ian Burnett is already well loved locally; he nearly won our recent Brewer of the Year competition, placing second in a close reader poll with massive turnout. But we’re guessing that the bulk of that support comes from High Point, where locals are guzzling down Burnett’s beer. Winston-Salem and Greensboro prefer to ignore the Third City as much as possible — someone joked to me this morning that they’d never heard of High Peezy.

But if you’re into beer at all, the four medals that now belong to this brand new brewery and its brewer are proof enough that High Point is a worthy destination.


It’s true that medals don’t mean everything. Most of the Triad’s breweries didn’t enter the competition, and we could argue about the subjectivity of taste.

But the other North Carolina awards went to some of the best executed beers around, including a silver for Gibb’s Hundred’s Medley of Moods wheat beer, a bronze for Foothills’ Torch Pilsner, a bronze for Lonerider’s Shotgun Betty hefeweizen and a well-deserved gold for D9 Brewing’s Dry Hopped Systema of Naturae — Scuppernong & Lily experimental beer.

And if you’re arguing about whether or not Brown Truck deserves the acclaim, I’m willing to bet you haven’t visited the brewpub yet.


Visit Brown Truck Brewery at 1234 N. Main St. (HP) or visit