I was a Canadian judge in June for the World Beer Awards 2018. A comprehensive press release will be issued September 20 with final award results. Style and country winner results are available now, see below. Soon we will know the “world’s best” in each of nine categories, Dark, IPA, Lager, Pale Beer, etc.
Over 2,300 beers were submitted, from almost 500 producers, from some 50 nations. Of course, judging was based on the beers submitted, as in any awards system. It’s a valuable barometer nonetheless, and the winners should feel great pride. All contestants should be proud, in fact. The standard of the beers I tasted was uniformly high and not everyone can win.
Canada had an excellent showing in styles with e.g. Muskoka Brewery winning for Specialty IPA (Berry Springer), and Cameron’s for Hoppy Pilsener, the 12 Mile India Pale Lager. Quebec breweries gained a number of the awards including for lambic-type (Trou de Diable’s Le Hérisson Brassin Spécial), and gose (La Tuque’s La Pécheresse, Miss Ghost).
Cameron’s in Oakville, Ontario won country award for Black IPA (Dark & Sticky), a fine beer of which I had bought a growler at LCBO.
I can multiply examples, from Canada and beyond, but scan the lists to see for yourself.
The international nature of today’s beer business is amply shown, as awards don’t typically relate to place of origin for the style. Style winner for English Style Brown Ale went to Taiwan’s Alchemist (for Chang Jung Brown Sugar), for example. For Imperial Stout, Germany took the palm (Riegele BierManufaktur for Noctus 100).
Still, German breweries won for the weizen categories except dark wheat, that went to Fujizaura Heights of Japan for its Schwarz Weizen. Some things don’t change, which is nice to know too.
Stay tuned for September 20.