Wednesday, November 24, 2010
GoLocalProv Lifestyle Editor Andrea E. McHugh
Competing against industry titans including Sam Adams and Japan’s Sapporo, Narragansett Beer proudly took home the gold medal for Best Lager at the 18th Annual Great International Beer Festival this month, which attracted roughly 300 breweries and cideries from around the world. "I always say how good the beer is, but that’s my job," laughed Narragansett Beer CEO and Middletown resident Mark Hellendrung. "When experts say it, it means a lot."
The lager was judged by 45 craft beer experts from around the country, so even though ’Gansett’s roots are planted right here in the Ocean State, Hellendrung is quick to point out there was no hometown advantage. "It wasn’t like we stacked the deck with judges from Cranston and East Providence."
Winning Accolades Near and Far
The victory comes on the heels of another prestigious coup the brewery won at the Tasting Institute’s World Beer Championship-America ’s oldest international beer competition-held in October: ’Gansett Lager and Light walked away with the bronze medal in the Pale Lager and Reduced Calorie Lager categories, while Narragansett Fest took silver in the Vienna Marzen Lager category.
Hellendrung credits ’Gansett’s esteemed brewmaster, Sean Larkin, with helping to land the honors, adding there’s a treasured nostalgia that the brand won in lager categories. This week, ’Gansett debuts its 2010 porter, a tradition that Hellendrung says dates back to 1916 which is craft-brewed in Providence and Pawcatuck, CT. "So we have a heritage in those season styles," explained Hellendrung. The porter will be available now through February.