Champion Brewery Awards

Beginning in 2004 and at every future biennial World Beer Cup, the Brewers Association will recognize excellence in achievement by breweries, brewpubs and the brewmasters crafting their products.

See Judging for information on how winners are determined. Awards are given in the following categories:

  • World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster Very Small Brewing Company  1 – 1,000 barrels or 1 – 1,190 hliters per year
  • World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster Small Brewing Company  1,001 – 15,000 barrels or 1,191 – 17,600 hliters per year
  • World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster Mid-size Brewing Company 15,001 – 6,000,000 barrels or 17,601 – 7,040,000 hliters per year
  • World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster Large Brewing Company Greater than 6,000,000 barrels or greater than 7,040,000 hliters per year
  • World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster Small Brewpub* 1 – 1,200 barrels or 1-1,408 hliters per year
  • World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster Large Brewpub*  Greater than 1,201 barrels or greater than 1,409 hliters per year

Brewpub: A restaurant-brewery that sells 25% or more of its beer onsite. The beer is brewed primarily for sale in the restaurant and bar. The beer is often dispensed directly from the brewery’s storage tanks. Where allowed by law, brewpubs often sell beer “to go” and /or distribute to off site accounts. Note: Brewers Association re-categorizes a company as a small brewing company if its off-site (distributed) beer sales exceed 75%.

Breweries with both Packaging and Brewpub locations: Brewing Companies entering separate packaging and brewpub locations within their company are required to enter both locations under the same Champion Brewery category (i.e., a single company may not enter a packaging facility as a “Small Brewing Co.” and a brewpub location as “Small Brewpub”, but instead must enter both facilities as the larger of the two, “Small Brewing Co.”). The BA will recategorize incorrect entries as needed.

Important Information

Please note the following rules for the World Beer Cup Champion Brewery Awards. Please also read the following information carefully in order to properly determine the correct size category you should select for your packaging brewery or brewpub.

For Packaging Breweries – Size is defined by total volume/barrellage of the company which has majority ownership of the brewery.

For Brewpubs – Size of single store Brewpub entrants is defined by production volume of the individual operation which holds the brewing license. Size of Brewpub entrants that are members of commercial entities, chains or groups with two or more stores is defined by total combined production volume of all stores.

  • For the purpose of any award or other honors, including the Champion Brewery awards, the brewing company identified on the registration application determines to which company points are awarded and which company receives the award. Points and awards are not transferable.
  • All brands entered on an application will be considered as brands of the brewing company identified on the application. Each brand may be identified as a product of only one brewing company.
  • Winners are determined based on the results of the competitive beer judging held at the World Beer Cup. Breweries are awarded points based on medals won, and these points are tabulated to arrive at the results. Here are the criteria used for awarding points, and the tie breaking system used to rank breweries.
  1. Most Total Points – breweries are awarded points based on the number of gold (3 points), silver (2 points) and bronze (1 point) medals won in the competition.
  2. Most Gold Medals
  3. Most Medals
  4. Most Total Entries in all Medalled Categories
  5. Number of Entries in Gold Medalled Categories

The second and third criteria have the effect of making a gold and two bronzes worth more than a gold and silver, while two golds would be worth more than a gold, silver and a bronze. The fourth and fifth criteria recognize overall competitiveness by achieving medals in categories with more entries than others.