Wellington Scoop

Nelson brewery named as best in NZ

Press Release – BlacklandPR
Nelson based Townshend Brewery has been named New Zealand’s Champion Brewery. The announcement was made at the Brewers’ Guild of New Zealand Beer Awards held tonight in Wellington.

Townshend beat stiff competition, with a record 670 beers from 84 breweries entered across 15 different categories this year. In total, 74 New Zealand breweries entered the awards.

Founder and brewer, Martin Townshend, said the award was the ‘icing on the cake’ in what’s been an excellent couple of years for the brewery.

“Being named New Zealand’s Champion Brewery is a massive accolade. It seems like only yesterday that I created my first brew in the shed.”

“Like most things in life, the secret to success is passion, hard work and dedication to the task. I still enjoy brewing now as much as I ever have and I think most brewers will tell you the same. That said, it’s huge to be recognised and this award is the best possible recognition a brewer could get.”

Founded in 2005, Townshend Brewery remains a one-person operation, producing approximately 50,000 litres of beer per year. The 650 litre brewery is still located at the Townshend family home in Rosedale, near Nelson.

In addition to being named Champion Brewery, Townshend was also awarded the Champion New Zealand Manufacturer trophy and won the New Zealand Specific Style category for his Oldhams Tap Riwaka Pilsner. 12 of his other brews also earned medals.

The fifteen other beer category winners were:

Category Brewery Beer
European Lager Styles Emersons Brewery (Dunedin) Gladiator Bock
International Lager Styles DB Draught Brewery (Timaru) Monteith’s Black
British Ale Styles Wigram Brewing Company (Christchurch) Tornado Strong Ale
Other European Ale Styles Emersons Brewery (Dunedin) JP 2014
US Ale Styles ParrotDog (Wellington) BloodyDingo
International Ale Styles Panhead Custom Ales (Upper Hutt) Boss Hog
Stout and Porter Styles Three Boys Brewery (Christchurch) Three Boys Oyster Stout
Wheat and Other Grain Styles Renaissance Brewing Ltd. (Marlborough) Black the RIPA
Flavoured & Aged Styles (incl. Fruit/Spice/Herb/ Honey/Smoke) Wigram Brewing Company (Christchurch) Captain Cook Spruce Beer
New Zealand Specific Styles Townshend Brewery (Nelson) Oldhams Tap Riwaka Pilsner
Specialty, Experimental, Aged, Barrel, Wood-Aged Styles Panhead Custom Ales (Upper Hutt) Black Sabbath
Cider and Perry Styles Zeffer Cider Co. (Auckland) Slack ma Girdle Cider
Cask Conditioned Moa Brewery (Marlborough) Moa Five Hop Handpull
Packaging Tuatara Brewing (Kapiti) Delicious Neck
Festive Brew Behemoth Brewing Company (Auckland) Brave Bikkie Brown Ale

The Boston Beer Company claimed the Champion International Brewery award while the Morton Coutts Trophy for Innovation or Achievement went to Steve Nally from Invercargill Brewery. Nally conceived the idea of packaging low carbonated draught beer in 20 litre bags to be used in bars with traditional English style hand-pumps. Media/Beer Writer of the Year went to Wellington’s Neil Miller.

Competition Manager, Craig Bowen, said the Awards capped another vintage year for New Zealand brewing.

“Each year, more New Zealanders are getting into beer and cider brewing. And each year, the task of judging at these Awards becomes much harder.

“Whether it’s a one man band or the larger more established breweries, New Zealand is enjoying a golden period in terms of the variety and quality of beers produced. That’s what the Awards are about – recognising and celebrating excellence in our profession,” he said.

Now in its eighth year, the Brewers’ Guild of New Zealand Beer Awards is an international competition, with entries from throughout New Zealand and the world. All beer entries were rated against a style guide for each category for its aroma, colour, bitterness, flavour and presentation. A beer’s overall balance of characteristics was judged by a panel comprising 25 national and internationally qualified judges.

A total of 61 gold, 121 silver and 169 bronze medals were awarded this year.

For more information including a list of all medalists visit www.brewersguild.org.nz

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