The award-winning dark ale brewed by Wisconsin’s Stevens Point Brewery won the gold in the Dark/Dunkel Lager (including Schwarzbier) category at the competition, held November 1-3 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Liège, Belgium. Braufactum Darkon, from Frankfurt Germany won the silver medal while Bamberg Schwarzbier, from Votorantim, Brazil won the bronze medal.
“To win gold in a world-class beer competition in a world-class brewing country like Belgium proves that Point 2012 Black Ale as a world-class beer,” said Joe Martino, Stevens Point Brewery Managing Partner. “The Brussels Beer Challenge is a unique showcase for the best beers in the world and we are proud we were part of it.”
Launched last year as part of the “Brusselicious” gourmet food celebration in Belgium’s capital, the 2013 Brussels Beer Challenge was a highlight of this year’s “Liège Beer Lovers City Fortnight,” a 15-day celebration of beer and brewing. The judging attracted nearly 600 beers from 15 nations, including the world’s largest brewing countries like the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and Belgium. A panel of 50 expert beer judges awarded gold, silver and bronze medals in 50 categories.
Point 2012 Black Ale
The Brussels Beer Challenge gold medal is not the first international award for Point 2012 Black Ale. Earlier this year the beer won a silver medal in the Denver International Beer Competition and a bronze in the New York International Beer Competition. Last year the beer won a bronze medal at the inaugural Brussels Beer Challenge as well as silver medals in the World Beer Cup, sponsored by the Brewers Association, and the World Beer Championships, sponsored by Chicago’s Beverage Testing Institute.
Inspired by the mystery of the ancient Mayan calendar, which came to an abrupt end on December 21, 2012, Point 2012 Black Ale was introduced in 2010. Today it is available to beer lovers in 25 states and the United Kingdom. Inspired by traditional German “schwarzbier,” or black beer, Point 2012 Black Ale’s ingredients include pale, Munich and roasted malts; and Cluster and Cascade hops from the Pacific Northwest and Saaz hops from the Czech Republic for the robust flavor and finish. The use of roasted malts adds a smoky, almost burnt character to the beer.
The Stevens Point Brewery
Stevens Point Brewery, founded in 1857, uses only the highest-grade barley malts, specialty malts, grains and the choicest hops to brew their handcrafted beers, including flagship Point Special Lager, which won the gold medal in the American Premium Lager category at the 2003 Great American Beer Festival.
In addition to Point Special Lager and Point 2012 Black Ale, the brewery’s year-round specialty beers include Point Beyond the Pale IPA, a West Coast-style IPA; Point Belgian White, a Belgian-style wheat ale; Point Burly Brown American Brown Ale, an American-style brown ale; Point Cascade Pale Ale, a hoppy American-style pale ale; Point Drop Dead Blonde Ale, a golden ale; and Point Amber Classic, an American-style amber lager.
Point’s seasonal brands include Nude Beach Summer Wheat, a golden wheat ale; Point Oktoberfest, a Marzen-style lager for the fall; Point St. Benedict’s Winter Ale, a dark, abbey-style ale available from November through February; and Three Kings Ale, a Kölsch-style beer for the spring.
The brewery’s year-round craft portfolio also features the Whole Hog Limited Edition “big beers,” including Whole Hog Six-Hop India Pale Ale, Whole Hog Raspberry Saison, Whole Hog Wee Heavy Scotch Ale introduced just this year, Whole Hog Russian Imperial Stout, Whole Hog Barley Wine Ale and the seasonal Whole Hog Pumpkin Ale.
Point also brews the James Page specialty beers, including A Cappella Gluten-free Pale Ale, Casper White Stout, Yhaba Dhaba Chai Tea Porter and Ould Sod Irish Red Ale.
Gourmet soft drinks from the Stevens Point Brewery include Point Premium Root Beer, Point Premium Diet Root Beer, Point Premium Orange Cream, Point Premium Vanilla Cream and Point Premium Black Cherry Cream Soda. Point Premium Root Beer, made with pure cane sugar, natural vanilla and Wisconsin honey, was awarded a gold medal by the Beverage Testing Institute.