Update re Canadian Judging for World Beer Awards, June 26

As I mentioned, here, last week I’m part of the Canadian judging panel for the World Beer Awards 2018. The event takes place one week from tomorrow on June 26 at Bar Hop Brewco on Peter Street downtown. I was just at its sister pub on King Street, in fact, and no place is better qualified to host an event of this nature.

Just a quick update to link to the judges page on the website of World Beer Awards. Numerous of the Canada judges including yours truly are listed with bio details, see under World Beer Awards 2018. (My image will go up in a day or two).

Toronto-based beer writer Steve Beaumont is the Chair of Judges for Canada, whom I’ve known for about 30 years. Scanning the other names, I know most of them as well, no surprise really given the nature and standing of this event.

I’ve been reviewing the product categories on the website. I don’t know who wrote them but they are clearly written with a good understanding not just of recent beer history but certain more distant historical essentials as well.

Of course every classification method has its own approach and internal logic. I’m making sure to absorb this one in readiness for the event.





4 thoughts on “Update re Canadian Judging for World Beer Awards, June 26”

  1. Cheers, Gary, you raise a couple of good points I had not considered, particularly the historical importance of which beers won what and where. Also the value in bringing interest in beer to a wider audience.

    I do know that the Australian International Beer Awards are a big deal Down Under and much is made by local breweries when they win medals, in the same way wine makers do and have been doing for years.

    Thanks for your reply, I do hope you enjoy yourself! I would be very interested in your thoughts afterwards.

    All the best (beer)


  2. Congratulations on your appointment, Gary. I am sure you will add a certain gravitas and wisdom from your experience over the decades in beer & other beverage tastings, allied with your unrivalled flair for research and vivid writing.

    I am wondering, though, whether you have any thoughts on how these kind of competitions add to the sum of beer knowledge?

    When I see awards and medals as part of the marketing spiel of a beer, I ask myself these questions:

    – who were the judges?
    – who is paying for the awards?
    – what other beers were in the style/category?
    – what criteria were used to select the beers?
    – did the breweries pay to have their beers selected?
    – are the beers from around the world or just easily available or as sent by the marketing department?

    Frankly, I usually pay scant attention to awards, based on some of the beers which I have noticed winning various medals.

    Am I too cynical or is there real value in these kinds of awards???

    • Hi Ben:

      Information on these awards is available from the website I linked to. Awards have been a part of the beer and drinks industry in general since at least the 1800s.There are different types of award systems and all producers are free to decide if they want to participate. All consumers are free to decide to pay whatever attention they wish to the results. I was always interested to note the results, as one of the factors to consider when deciding if I like a product. I’ve written in the past about beer and other competitions, historical ones, whose published results are often a useful source on the products entered for posterity. It brings interest and attention to the industry in general and many consumers are interested in the results.

      It’s a chance for me to employ, as you noted, some of the expertise I’ve gained over decades and I’m looking forward to it.


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