Firestone Walker Extends Streak of Major Honors at 2007 GABF
Pale Ales Lead Charge for Five Medals and “Mid-Size Brewing Company of The Year” Award
Paso Robles, California – Firestone Walker Brewing Company was declared “Mid-Size Brewing Company of The Year” at the 2007 Great American Beer Festival on Saturday, extending a remarkable streak of major honors over the past several years.
The designation of Mid-Size Brewing Company is applied to all participating breweries that produce between 15,000 and 2 million barrels of beer annually.
Firestone Walker Brewing Company earned five medals at the 2007 Great American Beer Festival judging, including gold medals for its Firestone Pale 31 and Nectar Pale Ale in the American-Style Pale Ale and American-Style Strong Pale Ale categories respectively. The brewery’s Double Barrel Ale and Firestone Extra Pale earned silver medals, and Firestone Lager earned a bronze medal. Brewmaster Matt Brynildson was named Mid-Size Brewing Company Brewer of The Year.
This year, 473 breweries entered 2,793 beers, making 2007 the most competitive Great American Beer Festival on record. Only 8 percent of all beers entered earned a medal. Only 1 percent of the breweries entered were recognized with “Brewery of the Year” awards. A total of 222 medals were awarded in 75 beer style categories, and top breweries were designated based on the total number of medals won. Only 62 breweries—13 percent of all those participating—won at least one gold medal this year.
Other major honors for Firestone Walker Brewing Company in recent years include:
- 2007 “World’s Best Pale Ale” by Men’s Journal Magazine
- 2006 World Beer Cup Champion Brewery for Mid-Size Brewing Company
- 2006 Best Beer in America by Men’s Journal Magazine (Firestone Pale Ale)
- 2004 World Beer Cup Champion Brewery for Mid-Size Brewing Company
- 2003 Great American Beer Festival Mid-Size Brewing Company of The Year
Firestone Walker Brewing Company has recently intensified its focus on Pale Ales under the banner of “Passion for The Pale.” An India Pale Ale, christened “Union Jack” will be added to the lineup in early 2008.
“We are honored to be recognized by our peers at the Great American Beer Festival, and we are particularly gratified to see our pale ale obsession rewarded with two gold medals and two silver medals amid competition from the finest pale ales in the nation,” said proprietor David Walker.
Founded in 1996 on California’s Central Coast, Firestone Walker Brewing Company is a regional brewery committed to quality, innovation and tradition. Firestone Walker Brewing Company remains the only American brewery to ferment beer in a union of oak barrels, a classic British brewing method that dates back to the mid 19th century. Firestone Walker Brewing Company was named “Champion Brewery” for the category of Mid-Size Brewing Company at both the 2006 World Beer Cup and 2004 World Beer Cup, and was also named “Mid-Size Brewing Company of The Year” at the 2003 Great American Beer Festival. www.firestonewalker.com