Tag Archives: Mirror Pond Ale

American craft brewers are big winners at 2013 International Brewing Awards

Beer judging session at UK's National Brewery Centre

Beer judging session at UK’s National Brewery Centre

American craft brewers once again have shown the world that they can bring home the gold – and silver and bronze – in international beer competitions.

Three U.S. breweries walked away with a combined trove of 21 medals—more than a fifth of all the medals awarde, 11 of them gold, at the International Brewing Awards 2013. The competition held earlier this month at England’s National Brewery Centre in Burton-upon-Trent.

roundLogoMedals went to 96 beers and ciders – just under 10 percent of the more than 1,000 beers and ciders entered, said Ruth Evans, director of the competition organizers, Brewing Technology Services. Beers and ciders were submitted from more than 45 countries by a broad spectrum of producers from regional micro-brewers to multi-national companies.

Boston Beer Co.’s Samuel Adams led the pack with nine medals, including four gold; Deschutes Brewing Co., of Bend, Ore., won five including three gold; Sierra Nevada Brewing, of Chico, Calif., took three medals two of them gold; Bridgeport Brewing, of Portland, Ore., won two silver; Kona Brewing won a gold and Alaskan Brewing, a single bronze.

America brewers have won an increasing number of medals in each succeeding IBA competition. Boston Beer Co. Sierra Nevada and Deschutes also were winners in 2011, when American brewers took home nine medals, five of them gold.

bottledetaillargecream--en--e641e338-b600-482f-a138-347ab1928330Sam Adams Cream Stout won gold in the dark beer category and silver in the bottled ale category. Sam Adams also was recognized for gold with its Cinder Bock, White Lantern, Black Brew and Latitude 48. The brewer’s other silver winners were Third Voyage and Double Agent IPL. Utopias 2012 was a bronze winner.

OBS_ovalDeschutes’ won gold with its Obsidian Stout, Mirror Pond Pale Ale, and Inversion IPA; silver with its Black Butte Porter and bronze for its Northwest Pale Ale – Red Chair NWPA, Deschutes Brewery.

palealeSierra Nevada Pale Ale won a gold for the keg version and bronze for the bottled version. Sierra Nevada’s Narwhal Imperial Stout was a gold medalist.

Bridgeport won silver medals for its IPA and its Ebenezer Ale.

Kona’s Big Wave Golden Ale was a gold medal winner, while bronze went to Alaskan Smoked Porter.

The awards will be presented on April 24 at Guild Hall in London, when the overall championship winners of the competition will be announced. The complete list of winners is available at the competition’s web site.

Perhaps less known in the U.S. as other competitions, such as the World Beer Cup, the International Brewing Awards have been around for more than a century. They date to 1886 and long were known as the United Kingdom Bottled and Draught, European and Commonwealth Beer Competitions. Until 1987 European and Commonwealth brewers were allowed to enter only bottled beers. The biennial competition was suspended in for six years, beginning in 2005, and revived in 2011 with new rules to reflect the changing industry landscape.

The competition, judged by professional brewers, was organized by Awards, Brewing Technology Services Ltd (BTS), which is owned by Brewing, Food & Beverage Industry Suppliers’ Association.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Taps - Beer

A trove of medals for American brewers at European Beer Star competition

Judges at work at the European Star Beer competition in Nuremberg, Germany.
(Photo courtesey Private Brauereien Bayern)

American craft brewers came away big winners at the recent European Beer Star competition, Europe’s biggest beer competition.

Twenty-one American craft breweries won 37 medals, including 14 gold (up from 12 in 2011) in 22 different categories at the competition, one of the world’s most-recognized beer competitions.

The best showing at the competition, now in its ninth year, was by Pelican Pub & Brewery, of Pacific City, Ore., with two gold and two silver medals. The 16-year-old beachfront brewery, along with Brewery Ommegang of Cooperstown, N.Y., was among the few entrants to win multiple medals. Ommegang won one gold, one silver and two bronze medals in various Belgian style categories.

“We are delighted to have won four medals  at this year’s European Beer Star. It is a competition we have done well in over the past few years but this is the first time we have come away with this many medals,” said Ommegang brewmaster Phil Leinhart. “It’s a testament to everyone who works here at Brewery Ommegang.”

The winners were announced on Nov. 14 at the Brau Bevialebeverage industry trade show in Nuremberg, Germany

American gold medal winners included:

•Belgian-style sour ale: Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red, Boston Beer Co.

• Belgian-Style Tripel: Ommegang Gnomegang, Brewery Ommegang
• Dry Stout: Tsunami Stout, Pelican Pub & Brewery
• English-Style Bitter: Calico Amber Ale, Ballast Point Brewing Co.
• English-Style Golden Ale (Summer Ale): Twilight Summer Ale, Deschutes Brewery
• English-Style Pale Ale: Mirror Pond Pale Ale, Deschutes Brewery
• German-Style Schwarzbier: Samuel Adams Black Lager, Boston Beer Co.
• Imperial India Pale Ale: Double Jack, Firestone Walker Brewery
• India Pale Ale (IPA): Union Jack, Firestone Walker Brewery
• Sweet Stout: Left Hand Milk Stout, Left Hand Brewing Co.
• Ultra Strong Beer: Stormwatcher’s Winterfest, Pelican Pub & Brewery
• Wood and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer: Imperial Eclipse Stout-Grand Cru 2011, Fifty Fifty Brewing Co.

To be sure, there was plenty of competition. Judges tasted 1,366 European-style beers from 45 countries on all continents in October. The competition, limited to 50 beer categories of European origin, was launched in 2004 by Private Brauereien Bayern – the Bavarian private breweries association and – and the German and European federations.

The judges, a collection of 102 brewmasters, beer sommeliers, and specialized journalists from 25 countries, spent two days blind tasting entries. Beers were evaluated on the basis of purely sensory criteria familiar to all beer consumers: color, aroma, foam, and, of course, flavor.

Brau Beviale 2012 attendees sample medal-winnng brews at Winners Night.
(Photo courtesy Privaten Brauereien Bayern)

In addition to style medals, Firestone Walker Brewery, of Paso Robles, Calif., received gold for its Double Jack in the Consumers’ Favorites category, a publicly judged blind tasting of 50 gold medal beer by visitors at the Brau Beviale. The consumer’s silver went to Kronenbrauerei Alfred Schimpf in Neustetten, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, for its South German-style hefeweizen hell, Schimpf Hefe Hell, and the bronze to Weiherer Rauch produced by Brauerei-Gasthof Kundmüller in Viereth-Trunstadt, Bavaria, Germany,

“It is a great honor to be recognized by the judges of the European Beer Star for beers with big American hop character. This competition brings in some of the very best brewers in the world and is judged by a heavily weighted European panel of experts,” said Matthew Brynildson, Firestone Walker’s brewmaster.

“Our collective results send out a strong message that our beers are world class and changing the way the rest of the brewing community is thinking about better beer,” Brynildson added. “The interest in American brewing and American hops is at an all time high and professional judges are awarding these beers top honors.”

German breweries won gold medals in almost all typically German beer categories, a first for the competition, according to the organizers.

“The European Beer Star has become broadly established,” Roland Demleitner of Private Brauereien, said in a press release. “Our award has long become an accepted quality seal, which explains why the competition is getting tougher from year to year!”

Belgian breweries won just eight medals, only three of them gold. Interestingly, an Italian brewery, Birrificio del Forte in Pietrasanta, won gold for its Belgian-style strong ale; a Japanese brewery, Konishi Brewing, of Itami City, won gold with its Belgian-style witbier; and a Spanish brewer, Bolets Petras, of Barcelona, won gold in the Belgian-style dubbel category.

Also, a Chinese brewery, Hainan Asia Pacific Brewery, took gold for its mild lager, while Israel’s Golan Brewery in Katsrin won a silver in the doppelbock category. Africa’s Namibia Breweries in Windhoek won silver for its mild Lager and German Leichtbier, or low-alcohol beer.

A complete list of winners is available for download.

Hav you had any of the winners? Let us know.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Taps - Beer