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2012 Craft Beer Distributor of the Year and GABF Winners

Over the weekend at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver, Brown Distributing was named the 2012 Craft Beer Distributor of the Year. We are elated and humbled by this gesture from the craft beer community and want to thank all of our team members, suppliers and retailers that have helped to make this happen. It's amazing to see what is happening to the Sunshine State with craft beer and we are committed to continuing this path and bringing craft beer everywhere possible!

The NBWA released the following statement on Saturday, announcing this award:

"DENVER, CO – The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) and the Brewers Association (BA) are pleased to announce that Brown Distributing Company, based in West Palm Beach, Florida, has been selected as the 2012 Craft Beer Distributor of the Year.  The Craft Beer Distributor of the Year Award, now in its sixth year, recognizes the beer distributor who does the most to market, promote and sell craft beer.  NBWA and BA presented the award jointly today at the Great American Beer Festival® in Denver, Colorado.

Brown Distributing Company, a family-run Florida company for more than 90 years, has evolved into a craft beer powerhouse, distributing beer from 64 craft breweries to nearly 4,000 retail accounts throughout the state.  Over the past 12 months, the company has achieved a 76% increase in craft beer sales volume.

Brown’s efforts to promote craft beer include social media engagement that helps improve customer relationships and a website that educates consumers through such features as an interactive distribution map, brewer profiles, an events calendar, frequent blog posts by staff and a client and customer newsletter. The company also launched a “Drink like a local” campaign that encourages retailers and consumers to support local beers and educates and promotes all of the breweries that are helping drive craft beer culture in the state of Florida.  Brown also works aggressively to introduce craft beer into new occasions by participating in events such as chocolate festivals, wine events and even mango festivals.

DeCrescente Distributing Company of Mechanicville, New York, was honored with the Craft Beer Distributor Achievement Award, and Tryon Distributing of Charlotte, North Carolina, received the Craft Beer Distributor Recognition Award.

“The entrepreneurial spirit of craft brewers continues to add energy and excitement to the American beer industry, and beer distributors take great pride in serving as the vehicle to market for these brands,” said NBWA President & CEO Craig Purser.  “NBWA is proud to recognize Brown Distributing Company, DeCrescente Distributing Company and Tryon Distributing for their role in strengthening the craft beer segment and bringing American consumers the most extensive choice and variety of beer in the world. The craft beer category continues to grow at double digit rates thanks in part to the strong relationship between craft brewers and beer distributors.”

Brewers Association President Charlie Papazian added, “Beer distributors like Brown Distributing Company, DeCrescente Distributing Company and Tryon Distributing are providing a valuable service by giving craft brewers a presence in the marketplace.  These awards recognize the creativity, innovation and specialized services independent beer distributors are providing on behalf of small and independent craft brewers.”

Congratulations to DeCrescent Distributing and Tryon Distributing as well.

Now on to the beer! It was also a huge day  for our suppliers. The following are some of the awards that were  won by our brewery partners:

Gold Medals

  • Fort Collins -  Bambastic in the Smoke Beer Category
  • Spoetzl Brewing (Shiner) - Shiner Oktoberfest in the German-Style Märzen Category
  • Spoetzl Brewing (Shiner) - Shiner Bohemian Black Lager in the German-Style Schwarzbier Category
  • Rogue - Hazelnut Brown Nectar in the Specialty Beer Category
  • Twisted Pine - West Bound Braggot in the Honey Beer Category
  • Cisco Brewers - Lady of the Woods in the Wood- and Barrel-Aged Sour Beer Category

Silver Medals

  • New Planet - Brown in the Gluten-Free Beer Category
  • The Bruery - Papier in the Old Ale or Strong Ale Category
  • Avery Brewing - White Rascal in the Belgian-Style Witbier Category
  • Summit Brewing - Summit Pilsner in the Bohemian-Style Pilsener Category

Bronze Medals

  • Twisted Pine Brewing - Big Shot Espresso Stout in the Coffee Beer Category
  • Cigar City Brewing - Cucumber Saison in the Field Beer or Pumpkin Beer Category
  • Left Hand - Sawtooth in the Ordinary or Special Bitter Category
  • Kona Brewing - Longboard Island Lager in the Munich-Style Helles Category

Congratulations to all of these breweries. We know how much blood, sweat and tears everyone pours into their beers (not literally of course) and it's great to see you all receive some much deserved recognition. For a full list of winners visit the GABF Website.

It was a big week for us and for our breweries. It's time to raise a beer and toast a great year for beer... CHEERS!


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