First published in the Sept. 18 print issue of the Glendale News Press.
Glendale’s two craft breweries brought home a pair of gold medals from the California Craft Brewers Cup in August.
Brewyard Beer won first place among amber hybrids with its signature Jewel City lager, while Paperback Brewing earned top honors for American-style India Pale Ales with Tucked In By Strangers. The competition, held in Sacramento, featured 60 total categories.
This latest award represents the fifth accolade for Jewel City, a California Common lager that blends caramel maltiness and earthy hop flavors and with a deeper amber color that sets it apart from other lagers. The beer ultimately pushed Brewyard to create a full lineup of California Common-based beers, which use lager yeast but are brewed at ale fermentation temperatures and were pioneered during the Gold Rush.
“Jewel City is our mascot, because it’s the grand motivation for this great beer experiment that we do here,” said Brewyard co-founder Kirk Nishikawa. “It was a great experiment for us because we were fighting this tide of ‘anti-lagerism’ when we opened six years ago, so we had to find a way to market it without calling it a lager.”
In addition to this award, Jewel City — whose label features a tribute to the Verdugo Mountains — has won a silver medal at the 2019 Los Angeles International Commercial Beer Competition; a bronze and gold medal at the 2018 and 2017 California State Fair Commercial Beer Competition, respectively; and a silver medal at the 2017 San Diego International Commercial Beer Competition.
The gold medal for Tucked In By Strangers, a West Coast IPA brewed entirely with 100% mosaic hops, represents the first-ever award for Paperback, which launched in summer 2020. The IPA, one of many offered by the brewer, includes a blend of floral, tropical and fruity notes and is designed to be less bitter and more palatable for those put off by a strong hops flavor.
“We’re pretty happy,” said Paperback co-founder Chris Cesnek. “We couldn’t be more excited, especially with an IPA. When you enter that category, you don’t expect to win because there are so many varieties entered. It’s a dream come true, and hopefully there’s many more to come.”
In another nod to its craft, Paperback’s latest West Coast IPA, Straight Out of Quarantine!, is featured as the official beer of the Los Angeles Beer Festival today.