Ska Announces Winner In 2011 GABF Pro-Am Homebrew Competition

Ska BrewingDURANGO, CO. – Judging has been completed in the 2011 Ska Brewing GABF Pro-Am Homebrew Competition, and Ska announced that Seth Townsend has won the “Best In Show” gold medal with his Organic Dubbel. Townsend’s Dubbel was entered in the Belgian Strong Ale category, where it also took top honors.

Winning the overall gold earns Townsend the chance to have his beer entered in the Pro-Am category of the Great American Beer Festival (GABF) — the nation’s largest beer competition and festival. The beer will also be brewed on a commercial scale for release as part of Ska’s popular Local Series, which is distributed around Durango and Southwest Colorado. Townsend will have the chance to participate in the commercial scaling and production of his recipe for the Local Series.

Chris Swersey, GABF Competition Manager, had this to say about the Pro-Am category: “Because so many professional brewers began as homebrewers, the GABF Pro-Am competition is a great reflection of craft brewer unity at all levels. The Pro-Am serves to keep professional brewers and homebrewers in touch with each other, and serves as an exciting competitive forum for both AHA and BA professional members. But most importantly the Pro-Am is fun.”

Ska Brewing has its own roots in homebrewing: the three Ska co-founders all got their start as homebrewers. Ska President and co-founder Dave Thibodeau said, “Homebrewers have the kind of DIY spirit that drove us to keep growing and improving. We really respect that. That’s how a lot of craft breweries—including Ska—came to be.”

As for Townsend, he’s understandably excited at the leap his homebrewing career has just taken. “My goal this year was to earn a spot in the GABF Pro-Am, so I focused on homebrew competitions that were selecting beers to enter it,” Townsend said. “The best part of this is that I’ll get to work with one of my favorite breweries, right here in Colorado. Honestly, I can’t think of a more fun brewery to be collaborating with to scale up my Organic Dubbel. I think it also shows that organic beer can stand up—and out—in a crowd.”

Complete judging results can be found at