Prizes flow for Illawarra Brewing Company

Dave McGrath and Shaun Blissett, from the Illawarra Brewing Company, toast their success. Picture: KIRK GILMOUR
Dave McGrath and Shaun Blissett, from the Illawarra Brewing Company, toast their success. Picture: KIRK GILMOUR

The Illawarra Brewing Company's beers have picked up more accolades, winning three medals at the recent Australian International Beer Awards.

Held in Melbourne last week during Good Beer Week, the AIBA judges beers from all over the world.

Illawarra Brewing Company's Dave McGrath said they sent down four beers to be judged, three of which received medals.

They won a bronze for their porter and kolsch and the Apocalypso IPA picked up a silver.

Other silver medal-winning IPAs came from breweries such as Epic in New Zealand and Deschutes and Ballast Point in the USA - so the Illawarra brewer is in good company.

Mr McGrath said winning medals was more crucial in the brewery's early days.

"Initially for us it was about credibility, when we were trying to break into the market," Mr McGrath said. "Now that we have quite a few awards on the wall, it's not all about that any more.

"That's why we only sent down beers we figured would medal.

"At the end of the day, it's down to your palate and what you as a consumer like to drink from us."

The IBC also brewed a one-off beer for the Great Australasian Beer Spectapular (GABS) - the Resin Dog IPA.

"It was well received - the whole Resin Dog name led to people promoting it via tweets and hashtags, linking it to the old band," Mr McGrath said.

"We got some good feedback from people down there.

"We only made a small batch - about 22 kegs - and we've sold out of it now.

"So we'll probably do another batch of it."

HopDog BeerWorks in Nowra didn't enter anything for the AIBA because, as brewer Tim Thomas said, all their beers end up in the "other" category.

"We don't fit a mould and we're happy with that," Mr Thomas said.

But he did enter a beer into GABS - a sour citrus-infused beer.

He said the feedback was good, with the beer ranking in the top 10 on the popular beer app Untappd.

It also finished in ninth spot in the People's Choice Top 10.

"For the serious beer geeks who are into sours, it just went fantastically," Mr Thomas said.

"We were really pleased with it and just wish we had brewed twice the amount that we actually did.

"The best comment we got was that it should have been called Sarah Jessica Parker because it's sour and horsey.

"That was fantastic."


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