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Alaskan Brewing walks away from 'Olympics of Beer' with trio of medals

Mike Campbell

The Alaskan Brewing Co.’s tall, cool ones have racked a few more medals for the company trophy case.

The award-winning Juneau firm claimed three World Beer Cup medals Saturday in a competition in San Diego, Calif., against 3,921 beers from 799 breweries in 54 countries. Organizers contend it’s the world’s largest commercial beer competition. Alaskan Brewing Co.'s winners: 

• Amber Ale captured a silver medal in the Irish Red Ale category. Winning was Red Tolley Ale from the Karl Strauss Brewing Co. in San Diego.

• Alaskan Stout won bronze in the oatmeal stout category. Winning was Naked Oat Stout of Rock Bottom College Park in Indianapolis, Ind.

• Alaskan India Pale Ale took third in the American-style Strong Pale Ale category.  Winning was Hop Knot of Four Peaks Brewing Co. in Tempe, Ariz.

"It's an honor to win at the World Beer Cup, in the presence of so many great brewers from around the world," Curtis Holmes, the Alaskan Brewing plant manager, said in a press release. "To represent Alaska and come home with three medals was just amazing, especially given the number of entries in the competition this year.”

Only nine states won more awards than Alaska. Judges from 27 countries did blind tasting evaluations to determine the winners.

"It's called ‘The Olympics of Beer' competition for good reason," Brewer's Association president Charlie Papazian said in a press release. "The event brings together great brewers from all corners of the globe. A brewer who wins a World Beer Cup gold knows that their winning beer represents the best of that beer style in the world."

Alaskan Brewing Co. began in 1986 with Alaskan Amber Ale. It captured a gold in 2008 for its Alaskan Summer Ale and another in 2010 for Alaskan Smoked Porter.

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