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Consumers' favourite beers revealed at Australian Drinks Awards

Consumers' favourite beers revealed at Australian Drinks Awards

The Drinks Association has revealed Australia's favourite beers at the 2019 Australian Drinks Awards.

Previously judged across just two sub-categories - Domestic and International – beer now has four sub-categories to better reflect market segmentation.

Drinks Association CEO Georgia Lennon said: "After consultation with our members and the brewing community at large, we decided to change the sub-categories to reflect how beer is classified within the drinks industry.

"This offers a far more nuanced playing field for finalists, one that truly reflects each brand's popularity and impact on consumers."

Based on industry scan data, the top 200 beer brands were automatically entered in the brand awards, which include Fan Favourite, Gaining in Popularity and Most Distinctive Brand. All three categories were judged via a Thrive Research survey of 4000 consumers. 

VB took out two trophies on the night, for Fan Favourite Classic Beer and Most Distinctive Classic Beer.

As one survey respondent succinctly summed it up: "VB is a down-to-earth legend."

It was a double win for Great Northern too, with Fan Favourite Contemporary Beer and Gaining in Popularity Contemporary Beer trophies.

"It's a bloody great beer," one consumer said.

The brew Lion launched to take on Great Northern, Iron Jack, won Most Distinctive Contemporary Beer. Respondents comment on its “great taste” and, in keeping with its true-blue marketing message, one fan noted that "it tastes like real beer".

The popularity of James Squire was obvious when it came to Australia's top craft beers, in addition to winning Fan Favourite Craft Beer for 150 Lashes Pale Ale, two other James Squire brews made the top 10 finalists - Nine Tales Amber Ale and The Chancer Golden Ale.

Another stand out was Furphy, which picked up the Gaining In Popularity award for Premium Beer and was a huge 12 points ahead of its nearest rival. It was described by one fan as being: "Between a lager and a pale ale, so just right."

Only two international beers made the final cut - Corona Extra won Fan Favourite Premium Beer, while Guinness won Most Distinctive Premium Beer.

But it wasn't all about the big brewers, Young Henry's won Gaining In Popularity, Craft, following up on its Most Distinctive Brand of the Year win in 2018; meanwhile surfer Mick Fanning's Balter Brewing XPA was voted Most Distinctive Craft Beer.

Here's the full list of beer winners at the Awards:

Fan favourite

Classic - Victoria Bitter

Contemporary - Great Northern

Premium - Corona Extra

Craft - James Squire 150 Lashes Pale Ale

Gaining in popularity

Classic - XXXX Gold

Contemporary - Great Northern

Premium - Furphy

Craft - Young Henrys

Most Distinctive

Classic - Victoria Bitter

Contemporary - Iron Jack

Premium - Guinness

Craft - Balter Brewing XPA


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