The Brew Site

Oregon Beer Awards 2016 – Call for Submissions

The second annual Oregon Beer Awards, the statewide competition organized by Portland’s Willamette Week, is fast approaching this January, and the organizers have a call out for submissions now. This competition is somewhat unique in that it is only featuring Oregon breweries, and that there are only 14 categories to be judged—not the umpteen fragments of categories and subcategories that characterize many of the big contests.

The inaugural OBAs that took place at the beginning of this year were somewhat Portland-centric, so this year the organizers are hoping to get more entries from breweries from all across the state—and it would be great to see many entries from rural and remote brewers, so consider entering your beer if you fall into that category!

Here’s the official press release:

The call for beer submissions to the 2016 Oregon Beer Awards, Oregon’s only statewide craft beer competition is now live. Brewers may apply with up to eight beers in 14 categories that closely reflect the state’s current market trends, including Sessionable Hoppy Beers, Stout/Porter, Sour/Wild, Pils/Helles/Kolsch and more.

“We recognized the need for an in-state competition to celebrate the world-class beers being brewed in Oregon,” said Martin Cizmar, Willamette Week’s arts and culture editor and OBA’s editorial director.

“We hope to draw somewhere between 400 and 650 entries from across the state,” added Ben Edmunds, brewmaster at Breakside Brewery and OBA’s competition director. “If successful, this will be the only competition of its kind, and (in my opinion) it is the sort of competition that Oregon Beer deserves.”

Forty-eight qualified industry insiders will participate in a blind tasting judging weekend, January 16-17, 2016 in Portland, with the goal of selecting gold, silver and bronze medalists in 14 beer categories. Additionally, a Voting Academy of more than 200 industry experts from a wide variety of beer-related professions across the state will vote on Best New Brewery, Best Beer Festival, Best Brewpub Experience, Best Beer Bar and Brewery of the Year.

Winners will be announced, celebrated and sampled at a gala ceremony at Revolution Hall (1300 SE Stark Street, Portland) on Tuesday, February 23, 2016. The ticketed event is open to the public and tickets will be on sale in January.

Ezra Johnson-Greenough, of The New School (, and Steph Barnhart, events and mar- keting manager at Willamette Week join Cizmar and Edmunds on the OBA Executive Committee.

And over on the official OBA page, they have the beer submission guidelines up, which I’m reproducing here:

Beer Submission Form
We look forward to receiving your beer submissions. Any one brewery may submit up to eight beers for judging. The submission deadline is January 8, 2016. Please submit your beers using this form.

Important Competition Details:

  • Limit eight entries per brewery
  • $10 per beer entry fee
  • No single beer may be entered more than once or in multiple categories
  • A brewer may enter a single category with as many entries as she/he likes
  • Judges notes will be provided for all entries in the competition
  • Breweries with multiple TTB-licensed brewing facilities may enter 8 per site, with a maximum of 32 beers across any family or chain of breweries.
  • All beers entered into the competition must be produced on a fully-licensed commercial brewery with a notice on file with the TTB. Breweries in planning and homebrewers are not eligible.

Brewer’s Style Guidelines and User’s Manual 
All applicants submitting beers to the 2016 Oregon Beer Awards must download and read this manual, as it contains imperative information about the submission process including full descriptions of the categories, deadlines and more.


And if you’d like to apply to be a member of their Voting Academy to vote on the five “Non-Beer Categories” (Best Beer Bar, Best Brewpub Experience, Best Beer Festival, Best New Brewery, and Brewery of the Year) fill out this form here.

I’ll reiterate what I wrote above: if you’re an Oregon brewery, particular outside of the Portland metro area, enter your beer! This is a great way to shine a spotlight on all of Oregon’s great beer, and I’d love to see some far-flung breweries winning some awards here.