We closed out the first round of the Vermont Brew Bracket yesterday with a couple big wins and a couple upsets.
First, the big wins: Switchback Ale and the Alchemist Heady Topper both broke 80 percent on their way to big wins over Northshire Equinox Pilsner and the Bobcat Cafe's Dauntaun Braun, respectively.
As for upsets, Lawson's Finest Liquids saw its Fayston Maple Imperial Stout pull out a surprise win over Trapp Lager, while Woodchuck Amber Cider came back from an early deficit to defeat Vermont Pub and Brewery's Burly Irish Ale. Incidentally, Woodchuck's win came with the most votes in any matchup, thanks to a big social push from Woodchuck's thousands of Twitter followers. Take note, breweries: your social media followers LOVE voting for stuff.
In the "near-upset" category, Fiddlehead IPA and Long Trail Double Bag were neck-and-neck for much of the day, but ultimately Double Bag prevailed by just 35 votes. Fiddlehead performed well for a brand-new brewery, though. Consider them the rookie upstart to watch in future years.
With that, we're on to the second round — the Sweet 16 Oz., if you will. All the brewpub beers are out at this point, but now some heavy hitters face off against one another. This time we're leaving voting open all weekend, so you have until Sunday night to cast your votes.
Will #9 be No. 1? Can Woodchuck continue crusading for cider in a room full of beer? Is it possible to pick a favorite between Switchback and Double Bag? The answers to these questions are up to you. Click here to cast your votes.
Here are the results from the second half of the first round:
1. Switchback Ale - 85.01% (482 votes)
8. Northshire Equinox Pilsner - 14.99% (85 votes)
4. Long Trail Double Bag - 53.87% (313 votes)
5. Fiddlehead IPA - 46.13% (268 votes)
3. Hill Farmstead Edward - 60.42% (342 votes)
6. Magic Hat Circus Boy - 39.58% (224 votes)
2. Harpoon IPA - 54.45% (318 votes)
7. Vermont Pub & Brewery Forbidden Fruit 45.55% (266 votes)
1. Otter Creek Copper Ale - 69.44% (375 votes)
8. Vermont Beer Co. Devil's Den Brown Porter - 30.56% (165 votes)
4. Vermont Pub & Brewery Burly Irish Ale - 30.75% (306 votes)
5. Woodchuck Amber Cider - 69.25% (689 votes)
3. Trapp Vienna Amber Lager - 36.38% (187 votes)
6. Lawson's Finest Liquids Fayston Maple Imperial Stout - 63.62% (327 votes)
2. The Alchemist Heady Topper - 82.73% (455 votes)
7. The Bobcat Cafe and Brewery Dauntaun Braun - 17.27% (95 votes)