Seems like Arizona's brewers are finally getting some of the respect they deserve.
At this year's World Beer Cup -- the largest commercial international beer competition on Earth with 799 brewery entrants from 54 countries -- Tempe's own Four Peaks Brewing Co. took home two gold medals and a bronze.
Four Peaks' Sunbru Kolsch beat out 45 entrants in the "German-style Kolsch" category, including many from Cologne, Germany -- the city where the style was invented. Perhaps more impressive, however, was their gold in the hotly contested "American-Style Strong Pale Ale" category, in which Hop Knot, an American IPA, conquered 81 competitors. 8th Street Ale, Four Peaks' English pale ale, was entered in the "Ordinary or Special Bitter" category and garnered a bronze medal in a field of 32.
Four Peaks was the only Arizona brewery honored in the beer judging competition, and actually came within half a medal away of winning Champion Mid-size Brewery and Brewmaster, which went to California's Firestone Walker Brewing Co. and head brewer Matt Brynildson.
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The Brewers Association developed the World Beer Cup International Competition in 1996 to celebrate the art and science of brewing by recognizing outstanding achievement in the field. Every two years, a highly qualified professional panel of beer judges(from 27 different countries this time around) honors the top three beers in 95 categories with gold, silver, and bronze awards.
"Scoring big at the World Beer Cup is not only a tremendous honor, but a great platform to let the rest of the world in on what Four Peaks fans already know - that what's brewing in Tempe is on par with the very best beer-producing cities in the world," said Four Peaks co-owner Andy Ingram.
Click here for the full list of this year's World Beer Cup winners.