In the spirit of the coming collegiate basketball championships, I have decided to run a March Madness-style online beer tournament that will break beers into four divisions and pit them against one another. The best part of the tournament is that you get to nominate the original 64 beers and then vote for the winners of each match up. Not only that, once the field is set, readers will the opportunity to pick the winners of the semifinals and final for some great prizes!
So, here is how it will work. For the next week – until Friday, March 7, 2014 – nominate your favorite craft or import beer. You may nominate as many beers as you like, but please list them your order of preference beginning with your top pick. On Wednesday, March 12, 2014 I will post the beginning bracket of 64 beers separated into the following four groups:
- US Eastern Division – Consisting of beers brewed east of the Mississippi River
- US Middle Division – Consisting of beers brewed roughly west of the Mississippi River and east of the Rocky Mountains
- US Western Division – Consisting of beers brewed roughly west of the Rocky Mountains
- Import Division – Consisting of beers brewed outside of the United States
Beers will be paired according to the number of nominations they receive.
Once the beginning bracket is posted I will add a survey to the blog for voting on the winners of each bracket. A new bracket with the victors of each round will be posted every four days until the final bracket is posted. That means that new brackets will be posted on:
- Sunday, March 16, 2014 – Thrilling 32
- Thursday, March 20, 2014 – Sweet 16
- Monday, March 24, 2014 – Awesome 8
- Friday, March 28, 2014 – Final 4
- Tuesday, April 1, 2014 – Championship
And here is how you can win! When you choose your winners in the first bracket of 64, you will also choose the four beers you think will make it to the Final 4 as well as the one beer you think will be the overall champion. I will randomly choose four winners who get the final four beers correct and one winner from all who choose the champion beer. Prizes will be announced later in the tourney.