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Brewers Cup & Awards

April 10 @ 6:00 pm10:00 pm

Celebrating the Art and Passion of Minnesota Craft Beer!

Join us for the Minnesota Brewers Cup, a state-wide competition for breweries to showcase their innovation and mastery of craft.

Winners will be announced during the Awards Ceremony on Friday, April 10, and receive special promotional opportunities.

Awards Ceremony Details to be Announced

  • Registration
  • Categories
  • Entry Requirements
  • Results and Awards
  • Thank You Sponsors

Competition Registration


Register for the MN Brewers Cup

Registration opens at 9:00 AM on January 16, 2020.

IMPORTANT! Review all rules for the competition PRIOR to registration.


This competition is organized by the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild. Please contact us with any questions.

Price per entry: $40
Number of entries per brewery: 6 maximum
Registration period: January 16-February 14 (NO EXCEPTIONS)
Drop off period: March 16-18 (NO EXCEPTIONS; NO REFUNDS)

  • This competition is judged using the BJCP category guidelines by certified BJCP judges. Local judges employed by a brewery will be assigned to categories outside of any categories in which they entered beer.
  • All entries must be received at the drop off location by the deadline—no late entries will be accepted. No refunds will be given for entries not received. The competition organizers are not responsible for miscategorized entries, entries that are not received by the entry deadline, or entries that arrived damaged.
  • The competition organizers reserve the right to combine styles for judging and to restructure awards as needed depending upon the quantity and quality of entries.
  • Qualified judging of all entries is the primary goal of our event. Judges will evaluate and score each entry. The average of the scores will rank each entry in its category. Each flight will have at least one BJCP judge.
  • Brewers are not limited to one entry in each category but may only enter each subcategory once.
  • The competition committee reserves the right to combine overall style categories based on the number of entries. All possible effort will be made to combine similar styles. All brews in combined categories will be judged according to the style they were originally entered in.
  • The Best of Show judging will be determined by a Best of Show panel based on a second judging of the top winners.
  • Packaging will not be returned to entrants.

Register to Judge the Competition

Registration for competition judging will open soon.

  • Required: Previous experience judging professional beer competition; BJCP certification preferred
  • Registration does not guarantee you a spot as a judge.
  • The MNCBG will review all registrants and assign judges based on need. Not all registrants will be chosen to participate.

Categories + BJCP Guidelines

Please review the following categories and subcategories prior to submitting your beers. Submissions will be judged against BJCP style guidelines.

Major categories may be chosen as the medal categories, but the MNCBG will have discretion over final medal categories based on the number of entries received. If a category has too few entries, it will be placed within another category.

  1. Pale American Beer
    • American Light Lager
    • American Lager
    • Cream Ale
    • American Wheat Beer
    • Blonde Ale
  2. Pale European Beer
    • International Pale Lager
    • Munich Helles
    • Festbier
    • German Leichtbier
    • Kölsch
    • German Helles Exportbier
  3. Pilsner
    • Czech Pale Lager
    • Czech Premium Pale Lager
    • German Pils
    • Pre-Prohibition Lager
  4. Amber European Beer
    • International Amber Lager
    • Czech Amber Lager
    • Märzen
    • Vienna Lager
    • Altbier
  5. Dark European Lager
    • International Dark Lager
    • Czech Dark Lager
    • Munich Dunkel
    • Schwarzbier
  6. Strong European Lager
    • Helles Bock
    • Dunkles Bock
    • Doppelbock
    • Eisbock
    • Baltic Porter
  7. German Wheat Beer
    • Weissbier
    • Dunkles Weissbier
    • Weizenbock
    • Roggenbier
  8. Pale British Ale
    • Ordinary Bitter
    • Best Bitter
    • Strong Bitter
    • British Golden Ale
    • Australian Sparkling Ale
  9. Scottish & Irish Ale
    • Scottish Light
    • Scottish Heavy
    • Scottish Export
    • Irish Red Ale
  10. Pale Ales
    • American Pale ale
    • American Amber Ale
    • California Common
    • English IPA
  11. Brown ales
    • Dark Mild
    • British Brown Ale
    • London Brown Ale
    • American Brown Ale
  12. Stout
    • Irish Stout
    • Irish Extra Stout
    • Sweet Stout
    • Oatmeal Stout
    • Tropical Stout
    • Foreign Extra Stout
    • American Stout
  13. Porter
    • American Porter
    • Pre-Prohibition Porter
    • English Porter
  14. Imperial Stouts
    • Regular
    • Wood/barrel aged
  15. American IPA
    • Traditional, non-hazy
  16. New England IPA
  1. Double IPA
  2. Specialty IPA (all)
    • Session
    • Standard
    • Double
  3. Strong Ale
    • American Strong Ale
    • American Barleywine
    • Wheatwine
    • English Strong Ale
    • Old Ale
    • Wee Heavy
    • English Barleywine
  4. Saison
  5. Belgian Ale
    • Witbier
    • Belgian Pale Ale
    • Biere de Garde
    • Belgian Blond Ale
    • Trappist Single
  6. Strong Belgian Ale
    • Belgian Golden Strong Ale
    • Belgian Dubbel
    • Belgian Tripel
    • Belgian Dark Strong Ale
  7. Weird Wheat beers
    • Berliner Weisse
    • Gose
    • Lichtenhainer
    • Grodziskie
  8. Fruit Beer
    • Fruit Beer
      • Must specify base style and fruit in entry.
    • Fruit and Spice Beer
      • Must specify a base style and fruit/vegetables/spices/herbs used.
    • Specialty Fruit Beer
      • Must specify a base style, fruit used, and type of additional fermentable sugar or special process employed.
  9. Spiced Beer
    • Spice, Herb, or Vegetable Beer
      • Must specify a base style and spices/herbs/vegetables used.
    • Autumn Seasonal Beer
      • Must specify a base style and spices/herbs/vegetables used; must contain spices and may contain vegetables and/or sugars.
    • Winter Seasonal Beer
      • Must specify a base style and spices/sugars/fruits or additional fermentables used.
  10. Smoke-Flavored & Wood-Aged Beer
    • Rauchbier
    • Classic Style Smoked Beer
      • Must specify type of wood or smoke (if smoke character is noticeable).
    • Specialty Smoked Beer
    • Wood-Aged Beer—Non-stout
      • Must specify base beer, type of wood or smoke (if smoke character is noticeable), and specify ingredients or processes that make this a specialty smoked beer.
    • Specialty Wood-Aged—Non-stout
      • Must specify the additional alcohol character, with information about the barrel if relevant, the base style, and if an unusual wood or ingredients were used, specify the sensory aspects of the ingredients.
  11. Wild Ales
    • European Sour Ale (all the category sans Berliner)
    • Brett Beer
      • Must specify a base style, if a 100% Brett fermentation was used, and may include the strain of Brettanomyces.
    • Mixed Ferm. Sour Beer
      • Must specify a description of the beer, identifying the yeast/bacteria used and either a base style or the ingredients/specs/target character of the beer.
  12. Soured Fruit Beer
    • Must specify the type of fruit/spice/herb wood used, the yeast/bacteria used, and either a base style or the ingredients/specs/target character of the beer.
  13. Specialty Beer
    • Alternative Grain Beer
    • Alternative Sugar Beer
    • Mixed-Style Beer
    • Experimental Beer
      • Must specify the special nature of the experimental beer, including the special ingredients or processes that make it not fit elsewhere in the guidelines.
    • Other Historical Beer
      • The entrant must either specify a style with a BJCP-supplied description or specify a different historical beer style that is not described elsewhere in the BJCP guidelines.

Entry Requirements

View full Entry requirements on this page of the registration.

Each entrant is limited to 6 entries, and 1 entry per subcategory.

We will require the following number of vessels per container type:

  • 12/16oz cans or bottles: Submit 3 per entry
  • 750 ml bottle: Submit 2 per entry
  • Crowlers/Howlers/Growlettes (750ml): Submit 2 per entry
  • Growlers: Submit 1 per entry. Please note that we suggest you do not enter growlers as it will be used for each round of judging and will lose carbonation/quality over time.

Additional vessels will not be accepted.

Results and Awards

Results and Awards

All results will be announced during the Awards Ceremony on Friday April 10, 2020 at the A’bulae in St. Paul. This is not a public event. Tickets are only available for MNCBG Brewery Members and Allied Trade Members. 

Tickets to attend the Awards Ceremony will be available on February 13, 2020. Members will receive an email with ticket information.

Award Categories:

First-place awards will be given at the ceremony, second and third place beers will also be acknowledged.  

  • Best beer in each category (chosen by judges)
  • Best Member Volunteer (chosen by Board of Directors)
  • Best Nonmember Volunteer (chosen by Board of Directors)
  • Outstanding Allied Trade Member (chosen by Board of Directors)
  • Other award categories TBD

Promotion of Winners

The winners will be announced in a press release, on the MNCBG website, and promoted at the Minnesota State Fair. Up to 10 awardees may be asked to participate in the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild GABF space in Denver, Colorado. Requirements to parcipate are based on the BA’s rules for exhibiting in the Guilds Pavilion and some breweries may not qualify.

Winners will receive POS graphics for marketing their awards.


April 10
6:00 pm–10:00 pm


255 6th St E
St Paul, MN 55101 United States