12 April 2024

Brewers and cidermakers crowned at IBCA 2024

Manchester | 67 different brewers and cidermakers from 21 countries have received accolades at one of the world’s most historic international beer and cider competitions, The International Brewing & Cider Awards (IBCA) 2024, which has taken place from 19–21 March 2024 – for the first time ever – in Manchester.

At the end of March, following three days of deliberation from an international panel of 38 judges from around the world, 115 medals were awarded to beers and ciders including winners from Cambodia, China, Czech Republic, Finland, Norway, Taiwan, Thailand, USA and the UK.

For the first time in its 138-year history, Manchester hosted the brewing industry ‘Oscars’ which date back to 1886 and have a rich history championing the world’s best brewers and cider-makers.

Medal winners awarded

30 Gold beer medal winners were awarded, including six from Japan (Isekado Brewery, Kirin Holdings Company and Spring Valley Brewery) and one each from China (Tsingtao Brewery), Taiwan (Buckskin) and Thailand (Chang).

Scottish brewers Tennents Caledonian Breweries and Brewgooder each took home a Gold while English brewers lapped up 13 Gold medals including two for Manchester’s own Joseph Holt Ltd.

In the cider competition, 13 gold medals were awarded including five to US-based cidermakers – two for Bauman’s Cider Company, plus one each for 2 Towns Ciderhouse, Portland Cider Company and Black Apple Hard Ciderie. 

The Nordic nations of Finland (Lepola Drinks) and Norway (OmCider AS and Aide A/S) scooped three alongside Stonewell Cider in Ireland who took home two Golds. Valle, Ballina y Fernandez SA (Spain), Phantom of the Orchard (England) and Dunkertons Organic Cider (England) each won a Gold.

The International Brewing & Cider Awards relocated to Depot Mayfield in Manchester this year and – in another first – was accompanied by a public festival. The two-day International Brewing & Cider Festival will provide a rare opportunity for the public to sample the range of beers and ciders entered into the competition, including the award-winners. 

The judging for The International Brewing & Cider Awards took place over three days between 19th – 21st March and provided an unparalleled opportunity for brewers and cidermakers to have their products evaluated by internationally acclaimed, commercially practicing international brewers and cidermakers, led by Chair of Beer Judging, Rob McCaig and Chair of Cider Judging, Gabe Cook.

Celebrating extraordinary beers and ciders

Ruth Evans MBE, Director of the International Brewing & Cider Awards, said: “It’s been an honour to recognise and celebrate the extraordinary beers and ciders across the world at our new home here in Manchester. We support the brewing and cidermaking industry on a not-for-profit basis, and the Awards has a long and rich history championing the best beers and ciders going into market. This week, we’ve had some of the best brewers and cidermakers in the world judge our prestigious competition and I’d like to personally thank all of them, as well as all the brewers and cidermakers who entered their products to make this year’s Awards one to remember. We’re thrilled to be able to continue to provide a platform to reward the best beers and ciders with the recognition they so truly deserve. And for the first time ever expand to launch our Festival, providing the public a chance to sample these award-winning drinks from the most extensive collection of international beers and cider in Europe.”

And Rob McCaig, Chair of Beer Judging, added: “We’ve had such an outstanding line up of judges from all corners of the world, and they’ve all done a remarkable job tasting and evaluating some of the finest beers from around the globe. This year proved to be one of the toughest yet to determine which of the beers were deserving of a medal. We had an exceptional amount of great quality beers enter this year, making the job of our judging panel extremely difficult. It’s a shame we couldn’t award more medals, as there were so many beers that were deserving of the accolade – some of which narrowly missed out. We saw a significant increase in entries in the Non & Low Alcohol category, which reflects the growing demand in the industry, and also saw an influx of international brewers enter the Smallpack Ale category, which is very promising. Historically, this category has often been dominated by the UK, but this year saw the inclusion of breweries from Japan, North America and South America.”

Rob McCaig, Chair of Beer Judging at the International Brewing & Cider Awards 2024, talking to a team of judges

The competition’s unique approach to the judging process sets it apart from other awards, which ensures each beer and cider is judged fairly and rigorously on its quality and commercial value. The 38 strong judging panel was chosen to reflect the current expertise in the tasting and commercial evaluation of beers and ciders going into the market and blind tasted hundreds of beers and ciders submitted by brewers and cidermakers from around the world. It is these values that has earnt it the reputation as the ‘Oscars of the brewing and cider world’.

All the gold, silver and bronze medal winners announced at Depot Mayfield, Manchester will collect their medals at an official Awards Ceremony on 1st May 2024 at The Guildhall in London, when 12 trophy winners will also be announced.

A full list of all 2024 medal winners can be found on The International Brewing & Cider Awards’ website https://www.brewingawards.org/.

The International Brewing & Cider Awards 2024 are supported by headline sponsors Barth-Haas Group, Krones, and Fermentis. Trophy sponsors include drinktech + Marketing, The Morning Advertiser, BRAUWELT, BFBI, All Party Parliamentary Beer Group, British Guild of Beer Writers, and the Institute of Brewing & Distilling.

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