Winning Out West

June 21, 2011, by Crafty Pint
Winning Out West

Clearly not content with taking a swag of prizes home from Melbourne last month, WA’s brewers have been at it again, picking up a host of trophies at the Perth Royal Beer Show. Serial winners Feral and Nail added to their already bulging cabinets, the former picking up The Premier’s Trophy for its Hop Hog and Best Ale Draught for Fanta Pants, the latter’s Nail Stout picking up both draught and packaged titles. Meanwhile, Swan Brewery was named Best Commercial Brewery due to the success of a number of beers that would never otherwise come near The Crafty Pint, and there were also trophies for Mash (Wheat Beer Draught) and Old Coast Road (Wheat Beer Packaged).

"The standard of exhibits, again, was high, and this year the judges were challenged to find the overall winners from the 259 entries," said councillor in charge of the competition, Bill Trend.

Feral’s Brendan Varis added: "Given the standard of entries received from all around Australia, it is both an honour and very humbling to be recognised in this way two years in a row. We go about the business of making the most interesting and highest quality beer we can all day every day and receiving awards like this one certainly help motivate us to continue strive for excellence."

WA couldn’t make it a clean sweep, however, with Victoria’s Holgate picking up Best Commercial Beer of Show and Best Packaged Ale for its Hopinator, a beer which had its recipe tweaked only last year, a move that would seem to have paid off. The trophy was an unexpected surprise birthday present for Holgate brewer Ian Morgan.

"Western Australia has a great craft brewing tradition and we were up against some excellent breweries that do very well in these competitions," he said. "At best we were hoping for a nice medal or two, so to walk away with the best beer trophy has us pretty stoked."

Head brewer and owner Paul Holgate said of the hop-heavy double IPA: "Most of our beers get two or three hop additions. The Hopinator gets seven. It keeps the brewer jumping!"

The awards were presented at a gala dinner on Friday night at the Mercure Hotel in Perth. It helped kickstart this year’s WA Beer Week, which is still running now.

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