Next year I hope to write this story from Denver on the floor of the Great American Beer Festival.

On Saturday the 2017 Great American Beer Festival (GABF) competition awarded 293 medals to some of the best commercial breweries in the United States, plus three GABF Pro-Am medals to teams of homebrewers paired with professionals. Presented by the Brewers Association (BA), GABF is the largest commercial beer competition in the world and the premier symbol of brewing excellence.

Winners were chosen out of 7,923 competition entries from 2,217 breweries in 50 states plus Washington, D.C. (a 15 percent and 24 percent increase respectively from the 7,301 entries and 1,783 breweries in 2016).

The competition took place in six sessions over a period of three days and was judged by 276 beer experts from 13 countries, including the U.S. In addition to commercial brewery entries, the judging panel also evaluated 118 Pro-Am entries.

Among the winners, St. Louis and Missouri breweries made their names known once again.

Category 6: Pumpkin/Squash Beer or Pumpkin Spice Beer - 66 Entries
Silver: Pumpkin Ale, Schlafly Beer/The Saint Louis Brewery, Saint Louis, MO

Category 29: Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer - 175 Entries
Bronze: Barrel Aged Barleywine, Charleville Vineyard & Microbrewery, Sainte Genevieve, MO

Category 30: Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Stout - 154 Entries
Silver: Maman 2017, Perennial Artisan Ales, Saint Louis, MO

Category 47: Dortmunder or German-Style Oktoberfest
Bronze: Northtown Native, Cinder Block Brewery, Kansas City, MO.

Category 65: English Mile Ale
Silver: Mamoot, Logboat Brewing Company, Columbia, MO.

Category 71: American Style Brown Ale
Gold: Bull Creek Brown Ale, Springfield Brewing Co., Springfield, MO.

Category 82: Belgian- and French-Style Ale - 53 Entries
Bronze: Working Title, Perennial Artisan Ales, Saint Louis, MO

Category 83: Belgian-Style Lambic or Sour Ale - 77 Entries
Silver: Blended 2017, Side Project Brewing, Maplewood, MO