Vying for attention in the international arena, 23 American craft breweries, all members of the Brewers Association’s Export Development Program, won 36 awards in 22 different categories at European Beer Star, one of the most respected and recognized beer competitions in the world. The honorees were announced on Sept. 18 at drinktec in Munich, Germany.
The competition is limited to 51 judging categories with consideration given to types of beer that have their origins in Europe. More than 1,500 beers from 40 different countries were evaluated by 102 beer and brewery expert judges. Gold, silver and bronze medals are awarded in every category and given for authentic, distinctive beers of impressive taste and quality that best fulfill the criteria of the particular style.
American craft breweries that received gold medal honors included:
“At Deschutes Brewery, we have been participating in the European Beer Star competition for several years, with success. When we began our brewery, over 25 years ago, our model was a European one where American beer would return to its roots in Britain and continental Europe. To be able to compete successfully in such a prestigious event as the European Beer Star is validation that our efforts have been worth it,” said Gary Fish, president, Deschutes Brewery. “Our efforts to export beer to Europe are still in their infancy. However, we know, through the European Beer Star and the Brewers Association Export Development program, our opportunities for success are far greater than if we attempted to develop a new market, sophisticated in beer, on our own it would be incredibly difficult.”
“What an amazing honor to receive our fourth European Beer Star Award for our Left Hand Milk Stout,” said Eric Wallace, president, Left Hand Brewing Co. “We are incredibly proud to produce such a widely acclaimed sweet stout both in the United States and in the European Union. We hold the European Beer Star competition in high regard and it is very rewarding to be recognized on the international stage for our efforts.”
“As demand for products from small and independent craft brewers continues to grow in America, we are seeing the same things in many markets around the world. Consumers are looking for unique and distinctive products,” said Bob Pease, chief operating officer, Brewers Association. “We’re thrilled to see that the international community is simultaneously responding to the ingenuity of American craft brewers as they continue to produce innovative, flavorful, unique and high-quality beers.”
Exports of American craft beer have maintained tremendous growth over the past several years. The Brewers Association’s Export Development Program reported record exports of American craft beer in 2012, with American craft beer export volume increasing by 72 percent with an estimated value of $49.1 million. Total American craft beer exports have increased by over 500 percent since 2007.
For more information about the European Beer Star Awards and a complete list of the 2013 American craft brewery winners, visit the European Beer Star website. Learn more about the Export Development Program on the Brewers Association website.