Brewers and cider makers from all over the world gathered at London’s Guildhall on 29 April for the unveiling of the Championship winners in the International Brewing and Cider Awards 2015. Trophies were awarded to nine beers and one cider, with Oakham Ales winning the Champion Cask Conditioned Ale title again for a second time.
The ceremony, which marked the end of the 2015 competition, was attended by more than 400 people. As well as the presentations to the 10 Championship winners, Bronze, Silver and Gold medals were given to more than 100 brewers and cider makers.
Oregon-based brewery Deschutes took an impressive three Championships and Marston’s picked up two, while Oakham Ales took the Champion Cask Conditioned Ale title again, having won it in 2013. Brewers from Germany and Belgium and a cider maker from Northern Ireland joined them on the winners’ podium.
Chair of judges Bill Taylor said, “Close to 1,000 beers and ciders were judged at Burton-upon-Trent earlier this year, so to be chosen as one of just 10 Championship winners is a tremendous accolade and the brewers and cider maker who are lifting trophies today should be very proud of their achievement.
“We are pleased to see the wide range of beer styles winning Championships and medals today. One of the strengths of the International Brewing and Cider Awards is its capacity to embrace real diversity, thanks to its broad, style-based categories which mean there is a place for every beer and cider.”
He added, “The cider category, introduced in 2013 and expanded in 2015, attracted almost double the number of entries this year. The International Cider Awards are firmly established as a credible competition and we look forward to building on them still further for 2017.”
Medals were presented to brewers and cider makers from 23 countries and from a broad spectrum of producers from regional microbrewers to multi-national companies. Their beers and ciders were judged in February by a panel of 43 judges, all currently working as brewers or cider makers.
Ruth Evans, director of competition organisers Brewing Technology Services, said, “At the end of this, our third competition since bringing the Awards back to the UK in 2011, we can confidently claim to have established it within the global brewing and cider making community.
“The fact that we again received beers and ciders from producers all over the world, including several first-time entrants, shows how they value the International Brewing and Cider Awards as a forum where they are able to benchmark their products internationally.”
The International Brewing and Cider Awards 2017 will be held in Burton-upon-Trent in February 2017. Entries will open in August 2016.
The International Brewing Awards Champions 2015:
Champion Smallpack Lager
Riegele Feines Urhell, Brauhaus Riegele, Augsburg, Germany
Champion Smallpack Ale
Armory XPA, Deschutes Brewery Inc., Oregon, USA
Champion Keg Lager
Clonmel 1650 Irish Lager, C&C Ireland, Clonmel, Ireland
Champion Keg Ale
Revisionist Rye Pale Ale, Marston’s PLC, Wolverhampton, UK
Champion Non and Low Alcohol Beer
Manns Brown Ale, Marston’s PLC, Burton, UK
Champion Dark Beer
Black Butte Porter, Deschutes Brewery Inc., Oregon, USA
Champion Strong Beer
Brugse Zot Dubbel, Brouwerij De Halve Maan, Bruges, Belgium
Champion Speciality Beer
Red Chair NWPA, Deschutes Brewery Inc., Oregon, USA
Champion Cask Conditioned Ale
Green Devil IPA, Oakham Ales, Peterborough, UK
Traditional Dry Cider, MacIvors Cider Co., County Armagh, Northern Ireland
Pictured above (l-r) Andrew Tysler, Deschutes Brewery; Greg MacNeice, MacIvors Cider Co; Keith Lugton, C&C Ireland; Frank Mueller, Brauhaus Riegele; John Bryan, Oakham Ales; Emma Gilleland, Marston’s; Simon Yates, Marston’s; Ben Kehs and Michael LaLonde, both of Deschutes Brewery