Unhopped Iron Brewer Challenge 2019

Friday January 11, 2019 — 6:00-8:00pm
Sabin Hall G90, 3413 N. Downer Ave., Milwaukee


  • Cervoise (Gallo-Roman Saison)
  • The Dream Eater (Belgian Gruit)
  • Dickens’ Purl (Spiced English Purl)
  • Late Harvest (Millet-Barley Braggot)
  • Chicha de Jora (Peruvian Maize Beer)
  • Pennsylvania Swankey (Small Beer)

For more information on the individual entries, view Unhopped Iron Brewer Challenge 2019 (PDF).

About 70 people attended the 2nd Unhopped Iron Brewer Challenge in support of the UWM/Honor’s College Brew Garden Initiative. Judges Kathy Flanigan (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee), Eric Gutbrod (Draft & Vessel, Shorewood) and Ethan Boehm (Northern Brewer Home Brewing Supplies) had the difficult task of comparing and contrasting six very different saisons, gruits, purls and braggots ranging in date from prehistoric and early historic Europe to 19th century Britain and America.

Audience members waiting patiently to taste the entries.

First place was awarded to the Cervoise, a Gallo-Roman Saison produced by Jeff Enders (Beer Barons of Milwaukee), whose name will be engraved on the UW-Milwaukee Unhopped Iron Brewer trophy, a silver-plated antique ewer produced by the Friedman Silver Company of Brooklyn, NY most likely commissioned by the US Navy for use as a water pitcher. It will be on display together with information about the event and the UW Milwaukee Fermentation Studies Certificate program in a case on the 2nd floor of Sabin Hall until next year’s competition.


Ethan Boehm, Anthony Spiegel, Jeff Enders, Kathy Flanigan, Eric Gutbrod (l-r)

The People’s Choice award and a gift certificate from Northern Brewer went to first-time entrant Anthony Spiegel (UWM undergraduate majoring in Geosciences) for his Dream Eater Belgian Gruit. A close second was the Cervoise, with Kevin Cullen (the 2017 winner) coming in third with his Dickens’ Purl, nicely spiced to accompany a roaring fire and a copy of Bleakhouse.

Consider entering next year – watch this space for announcements of the rules for the next Unhopped Iron Brewer challenge!