(San Diego, CA) – The 2012 World Beer Cup takes place on Saturday evening in San Diego.
The event is similar to the Great American Beer Festival in that certified judges put thousands of commercially-available beers to the test in dozens of style categories. The primary differences between the two are 1) international breweries are invited to compete in the World Beer Cup and 2) the WBC is held every two years instead of annually.
A record-shattering 828 breweries from 56 countries have sent a combined 3,949 beers (also a record) to San Diego for this year’s competition. 218 judges from 29 countries will rank beers accordingly across 95 categories. [Ed. note: the Brewers Association says these numbers may not be final.]
Some of the new standalone categories introduced at the 2011 GABF will carry over to the World Beer Cup this year as well like Chocolate Beer and American-style Brett Ale.
The USA nearly swept last year’s brewery awards with U.S. breweries taking four of the five honors: Firestone Walker, Ballast Point, Iron Hill and Devils Backbone. Asia Pacific took the medal for the Large Company category.
BeerPulse will be live at the Craft Brewers Conference and World Beer Cup Awards Ceremony providing some level of coverage. More on that later this week.