Beers from our breweries in the US, Latin America and Europe have been recognised as top notch by global judges

The World Beer Cup is held every two years to celebrate the art and science that goes into beer production, as well as raising consumer awareness of beer styles and flavours being crafted around the world. Its fans have dubbed it the ‘Olympics of Beer’ because the event awards three medals – gold, silver and bronze – for each category.

The 2014 competition, held in April, saw a total of 4,754 different beers entered by 1,403 breweries, which ranged in size from national market-leaders to small craft operations. At almost double the number of organisations who entered the previous championship in 2012, this once niche competition, first held in 1996, is fast becoming a highlight of the industry’s calendar.

Based in Colorado in the US, the not-for-profit Brewers Association prepares for the event by bringing together top beer experts to form a panel of judges, including international brewers, consultants, industry suppliers and beer writers. This year a total of 219 judges worked together on the enviable task of sampling the beers and awarding bronze, silver and gold medals to the top three entries in each of the 94 categories.

The President of the Brewers Association, Charlie Papazian, said that brewers enter the competition to win recognition for their creativity and brewing skills:

For a brewer, a World Beer Cup gold award allows them to say that their winning beer represents the best of that beer style in the world.
Charlie Papazian | President of the Brewers Association

The Beer Cup’s categories are split into three main groups: ales, lagers and hybrid/mixed beer styles. These are then further divided into location-specific variants of the types of beer. Though medals are not always awarded if a category’s entries fail to meet the expected world-class standards, this year saw a total of 281 awards presented.

Our business in the Czech Republic, Plzeňský Prazdroj, won gold and silver respectively for its brands Radegast Premium and Kozel 11° in the Bohemian-Style Pilsener category. Ivo Kaňák, manager of the Radegast brewery in the Czech region of Moravia, said the award was a great success for his team’s beer:

I am pleased that its taste has its fans beyond Moravian borders… We are very proud of the gold medal.
Ivo Kaňák | manager of the Radegast brewery

In Latin America, our business in El Salvador, Industrias La Constancia, also won two awards; Regia Extra and Pilsner scooped gold and silver in the Australasian, Latin American or Tropical-Style Light Lager category.

We had a huge success in the American-Style Lager category, where our US joint venture, MillerCoors, scooped all three medals. Coors Light, Miller Genuine Draft and Coors Banquet won gold, silver and bronze respectively, beating off 50 other entrants.

The final round of judging takes place only after all the World Beer Cup medals and results are decided, and the figures are then used to calculate the winners of the competition’s Grand Champion Brewery Awards. MillerCoors’ individual achievement within the categories meant its Golden brewery in Colorado and MillerCoors brewmaster, Dr David Ryder, went on to be crowned 2014 World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster in the large brewery category. It’s a wonderful achievement by our US team.

“At every step, from ingredients, to brewing, to packaging, our team at MillerCoors is devoted to brewing the highest quality beers in America,” said David.

The World Beer Cup is one of the most prestigious competitions in brewing, so to have our excellence recognised by the judges is a true honour.
Dr David Ryder | MillerCoors brewmaster

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