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Scottish Beer Awards

Judges get a taste for low alcohol in beer contest


Line ’em up: Beers will compete for prizes

The national competition for the Scottish brewing sector will recognise changing drinking habits by including a best low or no alcohol beer category.

The Scottish Beer Awards will take place in September at The Old Fruitmarket in the Merchant City, the first time the ceremony has been held in Glasgow.

The 2020 competition is now open for entries and has unveiled a refreshed line-up of business categories to include the recognition of sustainable business practices in brewing.

The popular blind tasting competition last year assessed almost 300 beers.

As part of the changes, the popular Beer Matters conference and trade show connected to the awards also finds a new home and will be staged as part of Drink Scotland, a new destination business trade show for brewing, distilling and soft drinks which will take place in Edinburgh in March 2021.

The Scottish Beer Awards is sponsored by supermarket chain ALDI for a fifth year as part of its long-term commitment to Scottish beers and brewing. 

Graham Nicolson, Group Buying Director, ALDI Scotland, commented: “It is encouraging to see the continued growth of the beer industry in Scotland and we believe that the quality of beer being produced in the country is second to none. 

“Our popular Scottish beer festivals provide us with excellent opportunities to cultivate long-term partnerships with many award-winning and up-and-coming breweries, allowing us to champion the outstanding beers that are being made by breweries across the country.”

The judging panel will again be chaired by Hilary Jones, the former president of the European Brewery Convention and former Group Technical & Quality Director at S&N. 

She said: “Now in its fifth year, the Scottish Beer Awards has really made its mark on the brewing industry in Scotland, becoming a respected and fair competition that provides breweries large and small with positive reputation advantages and business growth potential.”

Full details including the category line-up, entry guide and terms and conditions are available here and entrants have until 23 April to prepare and submit their work for consideration. 

This year’s winners will be announced at the Scottish Beer Awards celebration and dinner which takes place at The Old Fruitmarket in Glasgow on Wednesday 16 September.  The awards will again support The BEN, the Benevolent Society of the Licensed Trade of Scotland.

Judging Panel

Fiona Bain, Consultant
Tim Blades, Account Manager, New Wave Distribution
Fergus Clark, Consultant
Christie Clinton, Buying Director, ALDI
Iain Davies, Raw Materials Manager, Bairds Malt & Brewers Select
Ruth Evans, CEO, BFBi
Rob Gilmour, Senior Buyer, Flavourly
Daivd Hannah, Area Sales Manager, Muntons
Adam Hardie, Partner & Head of Food & Drink, Johnston Carmichael
Ian Herok, Director, Still Brewing Company
Colin Johnston, Craft Brewing & Distilling Sales Manager, Crisp Malting
Hilary Jones, Non Executive Director, WEST and Chair of the Judging Panel
Deb Kennedy, Leadership and Management Support Consultant
Niall Kennedy, Director, Wee Beer Shop
Andrew Ley, Partner, Addleshaw Goddard
Keith Lugton, Group Liquid Development Manager, C&C Group
Rob Mackay, Creative Director, Drygate Brewing Co
Dr Dawn Maskell, Director, International Centre for Brewing & Distilling, Heriot Watt University
Isla Mercer, Diary of a Beer Girl
Christopher Miller, Director, Craft Beer Clan
Sean Murphy, Food & Drink Writer, The Scotsman
Sir Geoff Palmer OBE, Professor, International Centre for Brewing & Distilling, Heriot Watt University
David Reid, Director, Because Brands Matter
Pete Sherry, Owner, The Beer Hive
Shannon Sherry, Marketing Manager, New Wave Distribution
Ali Stewart, CEO, Flavourly
Rachel Sutherland, Assistant Professor, International Centre for Brewing & Distilling, Heriot Watt University
Dan Unwin, General Manager, Brewers Select
Graeme Walker, Professor of Zymology, Abertay University
Marc Watson, Head Distiller & Distillery Manager, John Crabbie & Co
Caroline Wengel, Business Development Manager, The Brewers Association of Scotland
Dominic P Wright, Director Oude & Gruit

Business Categories

Scottish Brewery of the Year
Brewer of the Year
NEW – Excellence in Sustainability
NEW – Excellence in Branding
Product Development Team of the Year
NEW – Sales Team of the Year
Best Beer Destination
Best Beer Event
Best Beer Bar

Taste Categories 

Best Lager
Best Pilsner
Best Pale Ale
Best IPA
Best Session Beer
Best British Style Ale
Best Amber or Dark Ale
Best Porter
Best Stout
Best Amplified Beer
Best Sour Beer
Best Fruit Forward
Best Barrel Aged Beer
Best Juicy or Hazy Beer
Best Speciality Beer
NEW – Best Low or No Alcohol Beer

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