The finalists in the fourth annual Scottish Beer Awards have been announced, with 37 breweries and 200 beers brewed in Scotland progressing to the finals of the national competition.

What are the Scottish Beer Awards?

The awards programme is the largest independent assessment of the Scottish brewing sector ever created and the results provide an important indicator into the quality of Scottish beer and the financial performance of Scotland’s booming brewing businesses.

297 beers were tasted blind by 28 judges, which include many of the UK’s foremost brewing and beer experts.

Samples were judged and marked in a carefully designed process, which allocates points across a range of quality standards.

Well known, high volume brewers with a large product ranges have, as you can imagine, collected the highest number of finalist places but many smaller new breweries have also pushed to the front despite not having the same volume of product.

Who is in the final?

Brewdog lead the way with 27 places, which include 13 beers from the OverWorks sours plant.

Fierce Brewing have 20 places, Stewart Brewing 19 places, Drygate and Williams Brothers have 14 places each and Innis & Gunn have secured 13 places.

Smaller breweries – Overtone Brewing, Barney’s Beer and 71 Brewing – have also performed very well with double digit places.

After a record high volume of entries this year, only 60 per cent of the products entered were marked high enough to progress to the finals.

Chair of the judging panel, Hilary Jones commented: “We’ve welcomed a fantastic range of beers into this year’s competition. After a very rigorous blind tasting session, the beers that our most professional judging panel scored most highly, clearly showcase the best of Scottish brewing.

“The quality of Scottish beer just gets better and better! On behalf of the entire judging panel, who had no idea what products they were tasting on the day, I congratulate the many breweries who have taken part in the year’s competition and who are announced as finalists today.”

How does the competition work?

The tasting competition is also supported by 58 written submissions from brewing businesses which have been judged in day of business judging in areas including business performance, export, marketing and product development.

Five breweries have been selected in the highly anticipated Breakthrough Brewery of the Year category

These are: 71 Brewing of Dundee, Campervan and Overtone of Edinburgh and Merchant City Brewing of Glasgow.

Since inception, the Scottish Beer Awards has been sponsored by ALDI who this year celebrate their 25th year in Scotland and who recently collected the coveted ‘Scottish Sourcing Award’ at the 2019 Scotland Food and Drink Excellence Awards.

Graham Nicolson, Group Buying Director for ALDI Scotland, commented: “We are thrilled to continue our support as headline sponsors of the Scottish Beer Awards for the fourth year running.

“Scotland’s breweries continue to produce more and more high-quality beer and we’re very proud at ALDI to be involved in supporting the growth of the brewing sector in Scotland.

“We wish all the finalists the very best of luck in this year’s competition and look forward to celebrating the winners in September.”

All medal winners will be announced at an awards celebration and gourmet beer-paired dinner on Thursday 19 September 2019 at the Edinburgh Corn Exchange.

The awards programme created has this year appointed two new nominated charities for 2019.

These are The BEN, the Benevolent Society of the Licensed Trade of Scotland and the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation, set up by rugby legend Doddie Weir to help improve the lives of those affected by Motor Neuron Disease.

The full list of finalists

Scottish Beer Awards 2019 finalists

Last year’s winners

Scottish Brewery of the Year sponsored by Bruce Stevenson Insurance Company

BrewDog

Fierce Beer

Stewart Brewing

West Brewery

Williams Bros Brewing Co.

Breakthrough Brewery

71 Brewing

Campervan Brewing

Merchant City Brewing

Overtone Brewery

Brewer of the Year sponsored by Close Brothers Brewery Rentals

The winner of this award will be announced at the dinner.

Growth Business of the Year

71 Brewing

Bellfield Brewery

CCB Ltd (Keith, Spey Valley, Alechemy)

Coul Brewing Company

Fierce Beer

St Andrews Brewing Company

The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co.

Exporter of the Year

Belhaven Brewery

CCB Ltd (Keith, Spey Valley, Alechemy)

Stewart Brewing

The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Excellence in Marketing

71 Brewing

Barney’s Beer

Belhaven Brewery

Bellfield Brewery

Brewgooder

Fierce Beer

The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

West Brewery

Product Development Team of the Year sponsored by Muntons

71 Brewing

Bellfield Brewery

Drygate Brewing Co

Fierce Beer

Loch Leven Brewery

Merchant City Brewing Co.

Stewart Brewing

Top Out Brewery

Wasted Degrees Brewing

Williams Bros Brewing Co.

Best Beer Experience sponsored by Rankin Brothers & Sons

71 Brewing

Born in the Borders Brewery

Campervan Brewery

Drygate Brewing Co

Edinburgh Beer Factory

Fierce Beer

Tennent Caledonian Breweries UK

West Brewery

Windswept Brewing Co

Best Beer Event

BrewDog AGM

BrewDog Airlines

six°north Midsummer Beer Happening

LIDL Isle of Ale

TASTE COMPETITION

Best Lager

Cashmere Lager ; Overtone Brewing

Craft Lager; Bellfield Brewery

Craft Lager; Williams Bros Brewing Co

DRK; West Brewery

Franz Lager; Stewart Brewing

Innis & Gunn Lager Beer; The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Marshall Amped Up Lager; Williams Bros Brewing Co

Munich Red; West Brewery

Paolozzi; Edinburgh Beer Factory

Schiehallion; Harviestoun Brewery

St Mungo; West Brewery

Stewart’s Lager; Stewart Brewing

Tennents Lager; Tennent Caledonian Breweries

Tennents Gluten Free Lager; Tennent Caledonian Breweries

Weekend Hooker; Brew Toon

Wild WEST; West Brewery

Best Pilsner

71 Lager Dundonian Pilsner; 71 Brewing

Bearface Lager; Drygate Brewing Co

Bellfield Bohemian Pilsner; Bellfield Brewery

Craft Pilsner; Belhaven Brewery

Fierce Gluten Free Pilsner; Fierce Beer

Lost Lager; BrewDog

Peloton Pilsner; six°north

Pilsner; Merchant City Brewing Co

Stone’s Throw; Barney’s Beer

Best Pale Ale sponsored by Kegstar

Cascadian East; Stewart Brewing

Cloud Fall; 71 Brewing

Day Shift; Fierce Beer

Ferry Fair; The Ferry Brewery

Hollyrood; Stewart Brewing

Hop Fiction; BrewDog

Ka Pai; Stewart Brewing

New Millennium; Born in the Borders Brewery

Radical Road Reverse; Stewart Brewing

Single Hop 03: Simcoe; Fierce Beer

Talking Head; Williams Bros Brewing Co

The Ridge; Harviestoun Brewery

Vagabond Pale Ale; BrewDog

Vélo; six°north

Best IPA sponsored by Bairds Malt

APA; Windswept Brewing Co

Ax Man; Drygate Brewing Co

Bellfield Lawless Village IPA; Bellfield Brewery

Big City; Lidl GB and Stewart Brewing

BIG Volcano; Barney’s Beer

Bright Lights; Lidl GB and Stewart Brewing

Brut IPA; Overtone Brewing

Brut IPA; Top Out Brewery

Dynamo; six°north

Endeavour; six°north

Gladeye IPA; Drygate Brewing Co

Harviestoun IPA; Harviestoun Brewery

Marshall Full Stack IPA; Williams Bros Brewing Co

New World IPA; Merchant City Brewing Co

Pale Keith; Keith Brewery

Punk IPA; BrewDog

Radical Road; Stewart Brewing

Stillman’s IPA; Spey Valley Brewery

Tennents Export IPA; Tennent Caledonian Breweries

Tin Man; Williams Bros Brewing Co

Twisted Thistle IPA; Belhaven Brewery

Untitled; Edinburgh Beer Factory

Best Session Beer

Belhaven Best; Belhaven Brewery

Bellfield Session Ale; Bellfield Brewery

Birds & Bees; Williams Bros Brewing Co

Dead Pony Club; BrewDog

Easy Shift; Fierce Beer

Extra Pale Ale; Barney’s Beer

Green Monkey Wheat; Reids Gold Brewing Company

Harvest Moon; Born in the Borders Brewery

Hurricane; Windswept Brewing Co

Perfect Storm; Williams Bros Brewing Co

Session IPA; The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Session IPA; Stewart Brewing

Seven Peaks; Drygate Brewing Co

Summer Cloud; Born in the Borders Brewery

Best British Style Ale sponsored by Wolffe

40/- Fine; The Ferry Brewery

80’s Revival; Coul Brewing Company

Belhaven Scottish Ale; Belhaven Brewery

David’s Not So Bitter; Spey Valley Brewery

Good Ordinary Pale Ale; Barney’s Beer

GPA; West Brewery

Nimbus; Altas Brewing Company

Ossian; Innis & Gunn Inveralmond Brewery

Outlaw King; Loch Leven Brewery

St Giles; Stewart Brewing

Best Amber or Dark Ale

5am Saint; BrewDog

Bastard Amber; Barney’s Beer

Broken Dial; Harviestoun Brewery

Daracha; The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Don’t Date Robots!; Drygate Brewing Co

Ferry Alt; The Ferry Brewery

Five Sisters; Alechemy

Futurism; Edinburgh Beer Factory

King Slayer; Loch Leven Brewery

Lia Fail; Innis & Gunn Inveralmond Brewery

Pavlov’s Dog; Williams Bros Brewing Co

Red Rye; Barney’s Beer

Red Skelp; Dalrannoch Brewing

Smokey Jack; The Ferry Brewery

The Jail Ale; Brew Toon

Tornado; Windswept Brewing Co

Unit 1 Red Ale; Merchant City Brewing Co

Wolf; Windswept Brewing Co Ltd

Best Porter sponsored by Barr Printers

Cafe Racer; Fierce Beer

Capital Porter; Barney’s Beer

Coffee Porter; Windswept Brewing Co

Midnight Sun; Williams Bros Brewing Co

Thomas Miller 1875; The Ferry Brewery

Zombie Cake; BrewDog

Best Stout

1806; Windswept Brewing Co Ltd

8 Ball Stout; Reids Gold Brewing Company

Breakfast Toast; 71 Brewing

Cauld Reekie; Stewart Brewing

Chocolate Stout; Merchant City Brewing Co

Dark Skies; Drygate Brewing Co

HBC472 Stout; Overtone Brewing

Moose Mousse; Fierce Beer

Not Your Buddy, Guy!; Stewart Brewing

Old Engine Oil; Harviestoun Brewery

Orinoco ; Drygate Brewing Co

Scottish Oat Stout; Belhaven Brewery

Tennents Export Stout; Tennent Caledonian Breweries

Best Amplified Beer sponsored by Cara Technology

Arrakis; Drygate Brewing Co

Auld Toon; six°north

Chapeau; six°north

Imperial Cafe Racer; Fierce Beer

Jaggery Stout; Merchant City Brewing Co

Marshall Jim’s Treble; Williams Bros Brewing Co

Marshmallow Milk Stout; Barney’s Beer

The Night Land; Dead End Brew Machine

Best Sour Beer

Aplomb Bomb; BrewDog OverWorks

Cosmic Crush Cherry; BrewDog OverWorks

Cosmic Crush Peach; BrewDog OverWorks

Cosmic Crush Quince; BrewDog OverWorks

Cosmic Crush Raspberry; BrewDog OverWorks

Cosmic Crush Tropical; BrewDog OverWorks

Dream Catcher; BrewDog OverWorks

Electric Blue; BrewDog OverWorks

Exotic Burst; Campervan Brewery

Ferry Gose; The Ferry Brewery

Gooseberry Fool; BrewDog OverWorks

Hedgerow Sour; Stewart Brewing

Limoncello Soul; Brew Toon

Panavision Pink; BrewDog OverWorks

Rhus; BrewDog OverWorks

Sleekit Sour; BrewDog OverWorks

Very Berry; Fierce Beer

Wave Machine; BrewDog OverWorks

Best Fruit Forward

Che Guava; Williams Bros Brewing Co

Cranachan Killer; Fierce Beer

Disco Forklift Truck; Drygate Brewing Co

Elvis Juice; BrewDog

Mango Unchained; Brew Toon

Raspberry Carronade; Brew Toon

Raspberry Sun; Reids Gold Brewing Company Ltd

Rubus; Windswept Brewing Co Ltd

Rubus; ALDI and Williams Bros Brewing Co

The Hoppy Botanist; Campervan Brewery

Best Juicy or Hazy Beer

4-Cs IPA; Overtone Brewing

Aqualung; Stewart Brewing

Dark Side of the Moon; Campervan Brewery

DIPA; Stewart Brewing

IPA Comet/Waimea; Overtone Brewing

Late Shift; Fierce Beer

Mandarina Sky; 71 Brewing

NEIPA Here Nor There; 71 Brewing

NEIPA Vic Secret; Overtone Brewing

Pale El Dorado; Overtone Brewing

Pale Mosaic /Amarillo; Overtone Brewing

Voss IPA; Stewart Brewing

West Coast IPA; Overtone Brewing

Best Barrel Aged Beer

Angels Be Damned; St Andrews Brewing Company

BA Maple Very Big Moose; Fierce Beer

Bear; Windswept Brewing Co

Blood Red Sky; The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Bourbon Ba Imperial Cafe Racer; Fierce Beer

Bourbon Barrel Porter; The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Bring Out The Imp; Alechemy

Close Quarters; Drygate Brewing Co

Glenfarclas Cask Aged Jaggery Stout; Merchant City Brewing Co

Kindred Spirits; The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Looney Brew; The Ferry Brewery

Ola Dubh 12 year; Harviestoun Brewery

Paradox Islay; BrewDog

Rites of Passage ; Drygate Brewing Co

Speyside Oak Aged Blonde; Belhaven Brewery

The Original; The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Vanishing Point 02; The Innis & Gunn Brewing Co

Best Speciality Beer

Coconut Cookie; Reids Gold Brewing Company

Coconut Very Big Moose; Fierce Beer

Convergence #1 ; Drygate Brewing Co

Cool Beans; Barney’s Beer

First World Problems; Stewart Brewing

Funk x Punk; BrewDog OverWorks

Lemon Libertea; Brew Toon

Northern Sinner; Brew Toon

People Like Buns; Fierce Beer

Rwandan Coffee IPA; Overtone Brewing

Ten Ton Truck Vietnamese Coffee Edition; BrewDog

Yucatan Honey Wheat Wine; Top Out Brewery

About The Author

Rosalind Erskine

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind writes for The Scotsman on all things food and drink related.

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