Two Birds
The Two Birds Brewing team collecting their Champion Medium Australian Brewer Trophy at the AIBA

 

Gage Roads Brewing Company’s Little Dove (draught) has taken out Champion Australian Beer at the 2016 Australian International Beer Awards (AIBA).

Little Dove also won Gold in the Best New World Style Pale Ale class and was crowned champion national brew from almost 1,800 entries, not bad for a beer that had only been produced for six weeks before entering the AIBA.

“Little Dove is a beer that involved all our brewers coming together over three days and trying a number of approaches and recipes in the search for a beer that had something special and, importantly, was something we all liked,” said Gage Roads COO Aaron Heary.

“We are extremely proud of the recognition this beer has achieved and look forward to sharing its success with the growing number of craft beer enthusiasts in Australia that demand something unique and high in quality.”

Another big winner was Boston Beer Company, which was awarded Champion International Beer for its Samuel Adams Kosmic Mother Funk Grand Cru (packaged).

Major Australian trophies awarded, included Champion Large Australian Brewer to Stone & Wood Brewing Co. (NSW), Champion Medium Australian Brewer to Two Birds Brewing (VIC), Champion Small Australian Brewer to Pirate Life Brewing (SA) and the Australian Gypsy Brewer Award to BrewCult (VIC).

The international major trophies awarded included Champion Large International Brewery to Ballast Point Brewing and Spirits (USA), Champion Medium International Brewery to Pelican Brewing Company (USA) and Champion Small International Brewery to Moylan’s Brewing Company (USA).

“A lot of the judges’ comments were that the quality was really up this year, and you saw that in the medal count last night – some of the categories had huge numbers of gold medals. It was a real improvement on the last five years or so. It gets better every year, but this year was just special,”

AIBA head judge Warren Pawsey of Little Creatures told Beer & Brewer.

“Entries were up by about 10 per cent this year – we had 1,793 entries, which was good. I guess the best part for me was all the Australian breweries cleaning up. It was really good to see the likes of Two Birds and Stone & Wood win, it was really, really good.

“I remember years ago it was mainly US brewers cleaning up, and they wouldn’t even send someone over to pick up the trophy, so it was good. We’re really moving along.

“As in previous years, the process was intense and the judging panel were impressed with the quality and range of styles that were presented this year. The medal round was particularly hard to judge with some truly cracking beers entered.”

Two Birds brewer Jayne Lewis was understandably delighted by the win.

“We are absolutely stoked and still a little speechless about the win. When Danielle and I started Two Birds Brewing almost five years ago, we would never have imagined the sort of growth that we have experienced to date,” she said.

“The awards are recognition of the hard work that takes place in the brewery and is a mark of the consistency and quality of the beers that we’re producing. We couldn’t have done it without our amazing team, customers and loyal fans, they are the reason that we exist.”

A popular winner on the night was Steve ‘Hendo’ Henderson from BrewCult, which won the inaugural Champion Gypsy Brewer Trophy.

“I am elated that BrewCult is the first to be awarded the AIBA Champion Gypsy Brewer Trophy. I am particularly proud that our flagship India pale ale (IPA), Thanks Captain Obvious, was awarded both Gold and Silver medals and was the beer that made us qualify for the Champion Gypsy Brewer Trophy,” said Hendo.

“We are particularly grateful to our production partners, Kaiju Brewing and Exit Brewing in Dandenong South, who cooperatively own and operate our production facility, for sparing capacity to allow BrewCult to produce product under its own label.”

 

The 2016 AIBA Winners

Champion Trophy Winners

 

Champion Australian Beer

Little Dove (Draught)

Gage Roads Brewing Co., WA, Australia

 

Champion International Beer

Samuel Adams Kosmic Mother Funk Grand Cru (Packaged)

Boston Beer Company, Massachusetts, USA

 

Champion Large Australian Brewery

Stone & Wood Brewing Co., NSW, Australia

 

Champion Large International Brewery

Ballast Point Brewing and Spirits, California, USA

 

Champion Medium Australian Brewery

Two Birds Brewing, VIC, Australia

 

Champion Medium International Brewery

Pelican Brewing Company, Oregon, USA

 

Champion Small Australian Brewery

Pirate Life Brewing, SA, Australia

 

Champion Small International Brewery

Moylan’s Brewing Company, California, USA

 

Australian Gypsy Brewer Award

BrewCult, VIC, Australia

 

Gary Sheppard Memorial Trophy for Best New Exhibitor

Barrabool Hills Brewery Co., VIC, Australia

 

Major Trophy Winners

Best Scotch Ale/Barley Wine

Old Chub Scotch Ale (Packaged)

Oskar Blues Brewery, Colorado, USA

 

Best Belgian/French Style Ale

Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Packaged)

Boston Beer Company, Massachusetts, USA

 

Best Wheat Beer

Weihenstephaner Kristall Weissbier (Packaged)

Phoenix Beers on behalf of Weihenstephaner, Bavaria, Germany

 

Best Reduced/Low Alcohol Beer

Pirate Life Throwback IPA (Draught)

Pirate Life Brewing, SA, Australia

 

Best Stout

Spies Like Us (Packaged)

Wormtown Brewery, Massachusetts, USA

 

Best Porter

Chelsea Moylan’s Porter (Packaged)

Moylan’s Brewing Company, California, USA

 

Best Amber/Dark Ale

Two Birds Sunset Ale (Draught)

Two Birds Brewing, VIC, Australia

 

Best Speciality Beer

Samuel Adams Kosmic Mother Funk Grand Cru (Packaged)

Boston Beer Company, Massachusetts, USA

 

Best IPA

The Zymurgist (Draught)

Mountain Goat Beer, VIC, Australia

 

Best British Style Ale

California Amber (Packaged)

Ballast Point Brewing and Spirits, California, USA

 

Best International Style Pale Ale

Modus Pale Ale (Draught)

Modus Operandi Brewing Company, NSW, Australia

 

Best New World Style Pale Ale

Little Dove (Draught)

Gage Roads Brewing Co., WA, Australia

 

Best Australian Style Pale Ale

Swell Golden Ale (Packaged)

Swell Brewing Co., SA, Australia

 

Best Amber/Dark Lager

Stone & Wood Schwarzbier (Draught)

Stone & Wood Brewing Co., NSW, Australia

 

Best International Lager

Glamarama Summer Ale (Draught)

Sydney Brewery, NSW, Australia

 

Best European Style Lager

Lovedale Lager (Draught)

Sydney Brewery, NSW, Australia

 

Best Pilsner

Peroni Nastro Azzurro (Draught)

Carlton & United Breweries, Yatala, QLD, Australia

 

Best Australian Style Lager

Cricketers Arms Keepers Lager (Packaged)

Asahi Beverages, VIC, Australia

 

Best Packaging

Golden Era Golden Ale (Outer Carton)

Pirate Life Brewing, SA, Australia

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