Brewers from across the globe are celebrating after dazzling a demanding judging panel and scooping medals in the International Beer Challenge 2019.
The IBC is widely regarded as the world’s most prestigious beer competition and it is now in its 23rd year.
Nine hundred entries arrived from 38 countries this year, spanning traditional brewing nations like the UK, Germany, Belgium and the USA, plus exciting new markets like Paraguay, Myanmar and Taiwan.
A panel of 60 judges gathered in London to give their verdicts. It included retailers, importers, publicans, brewers, writers and flavour analysts, and featured some of the world’s most renowned experts.
They were presented with flights of unlabelled beer and tasked with agreeing – after detailed consideration and a full discussion – the prize each entry should receive.
In total, they awarded 64 gold medals, 196 silvers and 282 bronze medals.
Eight trophies will be announced in September in the following categories: Best Lager below 5%, Best Lager above 5%, Best Ale below 5%, Best Ale above 5% Best Stout or Porter, Best Fruit Beer, Best Speciality Beer and Best Wheat Beer. The Supreme Champion will then be chosen from these eight.
International Beer Challenge chairman Jeff Evans said: “Now in its 23rd year, the IBC has long championed the idea that a beer should win prizes simply on how good it is, rather than how closely it adheres to some pedantic definition of style. We believe that when customers enter an off-licence, while they may have an idea of the broad type of beer they want to buy, they are not fixated by technical profiles and simply want to know what is going to taste good when they open the bottle or can.
“This is the principle that we again rolled into play at this year’s IBC judging. The net result this year was that our judges discovered nearly 300 bronze medallists and nearly 200 silver medallists – all of whom have much to celebrate as a result. Most importantly, however, they also decided on more than 60 gold medallists from a wide range of countries, from Belgium to Brazil, Colombia to Cambodia, Myanmar to Mexico.
“These now go forward to the final round of judging in early September when a second jury meets to decide which of the gold winners claim our trophies. The discussions, I know from experience, will be intense, the testing rigorous and the trophy winners – as a result – totally deserving.”
There were also awards for the best design and packaging: five golds, three silvers and seven bronze medals.
Chairman of this section’s judges, Paul Foulkes-Arellano, said: “The overall standard of design was very high in 2019 compared to previous years. There were some standout bottles and cans, but mainly it was label design which had improved so dramatically.”
Notes to editors:
For further information please contact Samantha Halliday at Agile Media on +44 (0)1293 590053 or firstname.lastname@example.org
To find the full list of medal winners visit www.internationalbeerchallenge.com
About the International Beer Challenge:
For 23 years the International Beer Challenge has rewarded and promoted excellent beers.
The whole rainbow of beer complexity enters the IBC, with entries received from no fewer than 38 countries, including acknowledged brewing heartlands and representations from advancing beer countries.
Judges include some of the shrewdest beer judges in the land – retailers, importers, publicans, brewers, writers and flavour analysts.
Judges study each beer in turn, considering the appearance, the aroma, the taste and the finish, before discussing their findings with other table members and reaching a consensus on which medal to award. The level of knowledge and experience of the judges is striking and, for a beer to achieve any kind of medal from such exacting critics is a real achievement.