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Colorado Springs brewery caught in social media tiff; would it really leave town?

December 12, 2014 Updated: December 13, 2014 at 7:52 am
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Here's some of the spirited Twitter exchange between @TRiNiTYBrewing and others after a recent contest:
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Beer is to blame for many a tiff, but usually only after it’s been consumed in great quantities.

Something of a (sober) beer brawl broke out on social media Wednesday after Focus on the Beer published the results of its 2014 Best of Beer contest. Awhile back, the Colorado Springs blog invited readers to vote on their favorite brews in a host of different categories, from best style to best new brewery, in a “completely non-scientific, purely vote-driven” poll. 

After the big reveal in the best barrel-aged category, Trinity Brewing Co., seemingly miffed about its third-place finish behind Paradox Beer Co. and Nano 108 Brewing Co. (first and second, respectively), Tweeted its reaction: “lol?”

Subsequent tweets from the brewery called the contest results a joke, took swings at the city’s intellect (was that aimed at everyone, or just the beer drinkers?) and referenced a possible move to Denver, a plan leaked earlier this year in an interview with The Denver Post. The general consensus in some circles: good riddance Trinity, if that’s your attitude. 

But, but … is it really going to end like this?

Trinity is a highly decorated and creative brewery. It was the only contender from the Springs to medal at this year’s Great American Beer Festival and it continues to “bring in the bling,” a fact highlighted nicely in a November piece by Focus on the Beer’s Ryan Hannigan.  Regardless of how you feel about us, Trinity, we sure were proud of you. 

The brewery’s reaction runs counter to the collaborative, supportive spirit of craft brewing, especially craft brewing here in the Springs, and that might be the biggest shame. I emailed brewer Jason Yester to see if he wants to talk ...

Still, I can empathize. Anyone who’s logged significant time on the planet knows the special sting of an unanticipated burn. The thing is, when individuals get to decide an outcome as a group -- whether they’re “the public” or members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, beer experts or suds-guzzling dunces -- anything can happen. That’s kind of the point. Pulitzer Prize winning stories take third place in state competitions. Amy Irving gets nominated for both an Oscar and a Razzie for “Yentl.” Jesse Ventura becomes governor. You get the point.

And really, where’s the fun in winning all the time? Do it long enough, and I imagine it could start to feel less like an achievement and more like an expectation that must be met, a standard that must be maintained.

But what do I know, I live in Colorado Springs.

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