California Brewers Take Home the Gold at Intl. Competition
Local brewers pull in 35 medals at World Beer Cup
Sacramento, CA – California craft brewers pulled in a collective thirty five medals at the recent World Beer Cup, more than any other state and more than any other country outside the US.
The seventh bi-annual international competition, considered the “Olympics” of beer awards, was held in San Diego on April 19th. Six hundred and forty four breweries from 58 countries vied for the awards.
The competition also gives the “Champion Brewery” and “Champion Brewer” in each of five brewery categories. Tomme Arthur of the Port Brewing Company and The Lost Abbey in San Diego won the World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster in the Small Brewing Company category.
“California’s craft brewers continue to generate a lot of excitement and interest through the creativity and the quality of the beers they brew,” said Steve Wagner, president/brewmaster of Stone Brewing Co. in San Diego County. “The reputation of California craft beer continues to grow, not just in this country but around the world.”
California, the birthplace of the first craft brewery (Anchor brewing Company in San Francisco) and the first microbrewery (the now defunct New Albion Brewing Company in Sonoma), is home to over 250 craft breweries. The state accounts for 18% of the total craft beer produced in the country.
The international reputation of California-brewed beer helped the state’s small brewers post a strong growth rate of 5.8% in 2007 despite a huge increase in the cost of hops and barley. The price in hops alone has increased as much as tenfold for some varieties. Both non-craft domestic beer and imports grew by less than 1.5% nationally in 2007.
“The California craft brewing industry is thriving despite radical challenges in the cost of brewing high quality beer,” said Tom McCormick, Executive Director of the California Small Brewers Association. “Not only are we seeing strong growth in production numbers, but we are seeing a new surge of start-ups as well.”
The California Small Brewers Association represents the interests of the craft brewing industry in California. The membership ranges from Sierra Nevada Brewing Company in Chico, the country’s second largest craft brewer, to a wide array of tiny brewpubs.
California Small Brewers Association
PO Box 1202
Nevada City, CA 95959