Brau & Rauch Beer Contest 2021

Brau und Rauch Beer Contest 2021

Swiss Craft Beer Champions 2021

With 380 Swiss craft beers, the Brau und Rauch Beer Contest has once again set a new record and is able to present itself as the largest platform for Swiss craft beer. In addition to presenting the results, this year we will be looking into the question of why home brewing has gained in popularity.

Brewing beer is a time-consuming hobby. The amount brewed plays only a secondary role. Craft beer needs the brewer’s attention throughout the entire brewing process.

Home brewing is growing again

The explanation that the pandemic has led to a new home brewing boom is obvious. Those who work more in the home office have more time to brew (not during working hours, of course). Or omitted alternative hobbies such as team sports, which could not be practised for a long time due to the restrictions, have given time for brewing. Silvia from the Brau- und Rauchshop also confirms this. In conversation with us, she explains that she has many new customers who have discovered brewing as a hobby for themselves and order the smallest quantities of malt and hops in the shop.

So are all the beers entered in the B&R Beer Contest 2021 from new hobby brewers? Not at all. There are a large number of “regulars” who submit one or more beers almost every year. In general, it can also be said that about 40% are home brewers and 60% are registered brewers.

About the evaluation of the B&R Beer Contest 2021

We often hear from brewers that they don’t want to have their beers rated because the feedback is influenced by sympathies and antipathies. This is definitely not the case.

The beers are judged in a double-blind procedure. This means that the judges firstly do not know who has submitted a beer at all and secondly also do not know what kind of beer they are tasting. This guarantees maximum impartiality and a pure focus on the quality and taste profile of the beers judged. The beers are poured by the B&R team. No one pouring is also a judge.

The only thing the judges know is what category the beer was entered in and what style it should be. So, for example, in the Pale Ale category, an American Pale Ale. Even the assignment of the judges to the different tables, each of which evaluates a style in order to be able to compare the beers, does not take place according to the judges’ preferences for the styles but according to their expertise and the language spoken.

This gives brewers honest, unbiased feedback on their beers without having to resort to expensive lab analysis. Each beer is judged by at least three judges, and the brewers receive written feedback from the judges on taste, quality and if the beers are true to style. “Since there are only three prizes per category, the winners really have a quality seal,” Silvia from the Brau- und Rauchshop sais.

Brewers an Sommeliers as Judges

The jury that evaluates the beers is made up of knowledgeable experts from the beer scene. “This year, more than 20 judges evaluated the 380 beers submitted in twelve different sessions. Of the judges, 12 are brewers, 7 are beer sommeliers or recognised beer judges and a further 3 come from the gastro scene or from beer distribution,” says Christian Jauslin from bierversuche.ch, Doemens beer sommelier and judge at the B&R Beer Contest. And he continues: “We are also particularly proud that we were able to attract so many brewers from top Swiss breweries, such as BFM, WhiteFrontier, Hoppy People, Brauhaus 531, Brausyndikat, Blackwell, Brauerei Thun or La Nébuleuse.” By the way, breweries that provide judges are not allowed to submit beers to the contest.

So the winners can be all the more pleased about their title, because neither the name nor the good relationship with one of the 21 judges influenced the result. For this year, the following beers could be awarded:

Categories and winners

2NewCornerBeer NCB
3Brasserie Montheysanne
Bock / Doppelbock
1Theil David
2Thomann Lukas
3Grob Yvonne
Strong Ale
1Hellskitchen Brewery
3Mousse de Thoune
1Marmot Cervisiam GmbH
2Helbling Daniel
3Ahoi Bier 
Holz und Brett/Lakto
1Ahoi Bier 
2Ahoi Bier 
3Lost Grain
Jucy & Hazy
1Beer Guerrillas 
2Edwardson Tom
3Marmot Cervisiam GmbH
2Ahoi Bier /Friederich Dominik
3Thomann Lukas
Pale Ale
1Dr. Brauwolf
2Brauart dals Bofs 
3GreenhornS Brew
1Ahoi Bier 
2Nuzzello Davide
1Hebestreit Leonhard
2Brauerei Chäller Bröi
2Stocker Christian
1Berke Bräu
2Hausbrauerei Joe’s Beer
2Marmot Cervisiam GmbH
Schwarzbier / Rauch
2Lights Out Brewing KLG
3Alberth Stephan
Belgisch Starkbier
1Ahoi Bier 
2Thomann Lukas
3Mousse de Thoune
Cider / Ginger
1Tucho Brew
2Tucho Brew 
Double IPA
1— Why is there no winner?
– blogpost will follow soon —
2Thomann Lukas
3Alberth Stephan
Imperial Stout
1Thomann Lukas
3Scheidegger Kaspar
1Ahoi Bier 
2Krucker Brian
3Krell Pascal
2Marmot Cervisiam GmbH
3Hotel Parc Naziunal SA
1Ahoi Bier 
3Walliser Bergbrauerei Binn
1Käptn Holger
2Thomann Lukas
3Beer Guerrillas 
1Krell Pascal
2Foiada Flavio
3Old Hill GmbH
Weird & Wonderful
1Mousse de Thoune
2Marmot Cervisiam GmbH
3Brauerei Ziz
1Grossenbacher Oliver
2Marmot Cervisiam GmbH
3La Bière à Tigoum

The overall winner of all categories this year was Dr. Brauwolf from Zurich in the category Pale Ale. The overall winner of the Beer Contest 2021 will receive personalised six-packs and labels worth CHF 1500 produced by Schelling.

All category winners will receive a bag of malt sponsored by Weyermann Malz and also a voucher for the Brau- und Rauchshop worth CHF 100.- sponsored by Jemi ebatec. Second and third place winners can choose from various prizes worth around CHF 50 from various sponsors.

We from bierversuche.ch congratulate all podium places to their great success. 

Disclaimer: Bierversuche.ch has supported the B&R Beer Contest with the organization of the judges and has provided two of them, but has no financial participation in the company or the contest. We would like to thank the B&R team for the great organization and their extraordinary commitment. We would also like to thank all judges for their participation. We are already looking forward to next year, hopefully in spring and with a public spring beer festival.

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