RICHMOND, Va. — Turmoil struck the local craft beer community on Saturday when the Virginia Craft Brewers Guild hosted a blind taste test of multiple local beers, only to discover that Pabst Blue Ribbon was still the local favorite.
The tasting consisted of 250 participating tasters and ten breweries from the greater Richmond area. Each brewery entered three beers for participants to vote on based on color, flavor, mouthfeel, and overall quality.
However, brewers were surprised when the study revealed that a vast majority of Richmonders prefer the taste of Pabst Blue Ribbon to any other local brew.
“We were using Pabst as a control sample, something simple and low in flavor to compare,” Chuck Mast, the Virginia Craft Brewers Guild president, explained as he ripped up the voting sheets into small shreds and set them on fire with a lighter. “It was supposed to be more of a palate cleanser than anything else.”
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One participant, Jake Cunningham, spoke to reporters after the taste test. “The other beers were solid. But the second I sipped this beer — I had no idea it was PBR — I detected a small burst of hops, a slight hint of wheat, and a strong flavor of college house party. I was blown away. I didn’t even want to finish the rest of the tasting.”
Another participant, VCU junior Jessica Sathers, immediately recognized the beer’s signature taste and successfully identified it. She went on to say that the results didn’t surprise her.
“Pabst isn’t called ‘the people’s beer of Richmond’ for nothing,” she explained. “Besides, if it wasn’t a perfect brew, it wouldn’t have won that award in 1893, right?”
Mast claimed that the disappointing results have motivated him to announce his resignation as president of the guild. “I thought we were doing great, especially with everything going on around Scott’s Addition,” he remarked. “Guess I was wrong.”
At press time, employees at Lickinghole Creek Craft Brewery were seen dumping barrels of their beer into a field of sunflowers, Hardywood co-owners were found sobbing into a pitcher of award-winning Gingerbread Stout, and brewers from The Veil Brewing Co. were overheard discussing the possibility of crafting a PBR/IPA hybrid brew.