Pelican, Kulshan, pFriem, Wander, No-Li, and Bridgeport medal at this year's Australian International Beer Awards (AIBA)
Conducted by The Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV), the Australian International Beer Awards (AIBA) inspire and celebrate excellence in brewing, beer packaging design and beer media. -Australian International Beer Award

Over the weekend, while the rest of the Pacific Northwest was warming up or getting soaked, several breweries from the region received recognition in Australia. As one of the largest in the world, the Australian International Beer Awards judges and rewards breweries for both their packaged and draft beer. As far back as 2008, breweries like Pelican Brewing Company have shipped their beers to Melbourne to be judged by their peers. in recent years breweries like Gigantic, Kulshan and Wander have accepted the challenge to see if their beer stacks up against those in other countries. This year was no different with the submissions from our region comprised of AIBA vets Pelican side-by-side with the likes of pFriem, Wander, and Kulshan. 

Recognizing the Bellingham-based brewery Wander was on the list of winners this year, we asked co-owner/brewer Chad Kuehl why he sent his beer all the way to Australia. "Competitions are a way for us to have our beer evaluated blindly by trained judges in a structured environment. We field feedback on our beers from a variety of sources but it is difficult to obtain truly unbiased feedback other than through competitions." All told, Chad and his staff sent three beers and were awarded two silver medals (for Wild Warehouse and Sauraha) and one bronze (for Global Mutt). 

Meanwhile, at Spokane's No-Li Brewhouse, the reaction from winning two medals in the same category (American Style (Best IPA)) for their Big Juicy and Born and Raised, was summed up by owner John Bryant. "No-Li Brewers, Cellar and Packaging Team work together.  We source the freshest hops and barley malt, innovate in recipe development and kick-in extra TLC to create a memorable No-Li craft beer experience.  We are honored to be awarded two medals in the IPA category at the prestigious Australian International Beer Awards."

In addition to No-Li and Wander, Pelican, pFriem, and Bridgeport received recognition for their submissions. Those medals are as follows:

Pelican Brewing Company from Pacific City, Oregon

  • Champion for Medium International Brewery
  • Gold for Kiwanda Cream Ale
  • Gold for Mother of All Storms English-style Barleywine
  • Silver for Beak Breaker Double IPA
  • Silver for MacPelican’s Wee Heavy Scotch Ale
  • Silver for Stormwatcher’s Winterfest English Barleywine
  • Silver for Father of All Tsunamis Imperial Stout Ale
  • Bronze for Dirty Bird Northwest IPA
  • Bronze for Umbrella New World IPA
  • Bronze for Tsunami Export Stout
  • Bronze for Captain of The Coast Wee Heavy Ale

pFriem Family Brewers from Hood River, Oregon

Thanks for the love Australia! We are proud to medal with so many great brewers from around the world! -Josh pFriem, co-owner and brewer
  • Bronze for Helles Lager
  • Bronze for Pilsner
  • Bronze for IPA
  • Bronze for Abrikoos
  • Bronze for Saison

Bridgeport Brewing Company from Portland, Oregon

  • Bronze for Kingpin Double Red Ale
  • Silver for Fallen Friar

Kulshan Brewery from Bellingham, Washington

This round of medals is very meaningful as always, but more than anything it is a true testament to the incredible talents of our team. To us, the most meaningful recognition is that fact that all of our flagships have never wavered from the highest quality, which has clearly been demonstrated by the competitions results and the happy patrons who enjoy our creations everyday! Cheers!
  • Bronze for Sunnyland IPA
  • Silver for Bastard Kat IPA
  • Bronze for Red Cap Red
  • Bronze for Russian Imperial Stout

For more results from this year's ceremony or to look up your favorite brewery, visit to review all the winners.

UPDATE May 22nd, 2017: Updated with responses from other breweries.

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