Voting has been closed on the Elite Eight round of Chug Madness 2014, and we’re ready to slug it out to determine who will be in the championship. Though there haven’t been as many upsets as in the NCAA March Madness tournament, we’ve had our fair share here at Team Chug. We determined the seeds so our favorites were clear, but you’ve voted and you picked who will be representing the each bracket in the Final Four!
This round will bring the first head to head match-ups between our two authors / chuggers, Homebrews32 and PoopThoughts. You’ll see their chugs side by side in all their glory. We have four absolute knockout beers going at it here. Some have written themselves total Cinderella stories, and some have just been riding the “favorite” wave and leaving every beer crying in their wake. No matter how they got here, they’re ready to play. Here’s the story of the Road to the Final Four.
Dogfish Head Brewing Company: 90 Minute IPA
90-Minute IPA came into this tournament as the overall favorite. It was the 1-Seed in the Beach Beauties Bracket, and the only beer to be rated a 10 on taste in the history of Official Chug Reviews. Dogfish came in hot, absolutely pummeling the play-in champion, Lagunitas Brown Shugga in Round 1. It went on to face another Lagunitas brew in Round 2, Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’, which unfortunately never had a chance. The Elite-8 round didn’t bring a challenge for Dogfish either, as they rolled over Stone Ruination IPA. Nobody has really given Dogfish a run for their money yet..let’s see what the Final Four will bring to the table.
Cambridge Brewing Company: Audacity of Hops
Audacity of Hops, oh man. Although this brew is coming in as a 3-Seed, we felt they’d be knocked out a while ago. That’s not to knock this brew, because it is a delicious Belgian Double IPA, however their footprint is very small compared to the rest of these breweries. They’ve had a rough road through the difficult Gentle Giants bracket, but Audacity has a lot of local support, so they’ve kept knockin’em down. They battled and CRUSHED Weyerbacher Old Heathen in Round 1. Round 2 put Audacity up against another strong Weyerbacher competitor in Merry Monks, and left the Monks of Weyerbacher feeling as confused as Florida felt after the UConn game last night. We thought for sure they’d go down in the Elite-8, but they squeaked past Avery Ellie’s Brown Ale, which is one of the top beers we’ve reviewed. They’ve earned their way into the Final Four, whether they hold up or not is up to you.
Oskar Blues Brewing Company: Dale’s Pale Ale
Dale’s Pale Ale is a beer that is frequently mentioned when discussing the best Pale Ale on the market. Also, one of the top beers you’re going to find in a can for cheap. Its wide availability, cheap distribution, and delicious bold flavor makes it a favorite among the masses which gives it a leg up in a competition like this. In Round 1 it found itself pinned up against Ska Brewing: Modus Hoperandi which didn’t receive a single vote. Round 2 brought one of the in-brewery match-ups of the competition as Dale’s was forced to play it’s big brother, Ten Fidy, and edged it out by a few votes. Odell Brewing: Myrcenary Double IPA was the favorite in the Mighty Mountains bracket, but it fell victim to Dale’s in the Elite-8 round when Oskar Blues got just 2 more votes than Odell. Dale’s has a serious shot in this competition, it’ll be interesting to see what happens in the Final Four.
Anderson Valley Brewing Company: Heelch O’Hops
Coming in hot as a number 2-Seed, Heelch O’Hops has paved it’s way through the Hop Madness bracket to find itself in the Final Four. It’s perfect balance of 100+IBUs and HEAVY malt backbone have proven it worthy of a spot this far into the competition. In Round 1, it withstood a few punches from Green Flash: West Coast IPA, but ultimately kicked it to the curb. Uinta Hop Notch tried it’s luck in Round 2, but this IIPA proved itself too strong against these two delicious single IPAs. The Elite-8 round could have gone either way as Strone Self-Righteous, a “Chug of the Month” from February, was standing with it’s chest puffed out against Heelch O’Hops. Heelch raised a foot and kicked stone right in the tits and sent it back to Escondido. The amazing Double IPA out of CA has what it takes to make the big dance, let’s see how it will hold up against the best brews in the tournament.
The games will be posted tomorrow, April 7th, and voting will close on Tuesday night, April 8th, with the final to be posted on the 9th. All four of these beers have what it takes to become the Team Chug Super Elite Champion for 2014. It’s up to you to determine who will claim the title. Get your votes in, grab a beer, and enjoy the tournament. Cheers, ChugNation!