Local brewery wins national award

Sheri Kotzum | 315-4353 | @DestinLogSheri | skotzum@thedestinlog.com

A local brewery has received national recognition.

The Destin Brewery won the bronze award in the New York International Beer Competition for their German-style kölsch.

Brewery owner Kelly Taylor said he hasn’t stopped doing cartwheels since finding out they won. At this year’s competition there were over 300 submissions from 14 different countries in more than 30 categories.

“It just shows that we have a quality product and that it stands up and actually outshines a lot of other quality products,” Taylor said.

According to the New York International Beer Competition’s website, the contest is judged by multiple trade buyers – “who are a mix of restaurateurs, cicerones, sommeliers, retail beer buyers, distributors and importers.”

The beers are presented to the judges in coded glasses, so they have no idea where they're from or who made them. They must rely solely on the taste.

According to the site, the award levels range from

  • Double Gold: Phenomenal Product (Must Be Unanimous Decision by Panelists)
  • Gold: Buyers “Love” It
  • Silver: Buyers “Like” It
  • Bronze: Buyers Would Purchase It

“I just love the fact that we were the only Florida brewery that placed in the competition,” Taylor said. “It’s nice to see Florida, and specifically Destin, named.”

The Destin Brewery’s Emerald Köast Kölsch is a rice-style lager made with a Kölsch Ale yeast. Taylor said making a kölsch is one of the most challenging things to do.

“It is an ale but it drinks like a lager,” he said. "For the people who like to drink the lighter, more refreshing beers at the beach, pool, country club … we can give them that in an ale and that makes us pretty proud.”

The kölsch is one of the newest beers that has been added to the brewery’s staple beers, but it's also the fastest growing one.

“It’s in full production and it’s probably going to run neck and neck with our sales on Destin Ale,” Taylor said.

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