Firestone Walker Brewing takes six awards

Firestone Walker Brewing Co. was named midsize brewery of the year and won six medals — three of them gold — at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver earlier this month.

Led by brewmaster Matthew Brynildson, the Paso Robles-based brewery has now earned the festival’s Mid-Size Brewing Company/Brewer of the Year award three times — more than any other brewery in the history of the 30-year event.

Firestone Walker also won in 2003 and 2007.

“The midsized brewery of the year award is one of the most prestigious in the beer industry, as the GABF is the world’s largest beer competition,” said Jamie C. Smith, vice president of marketing for Firestone Walker. “To win this three times in an ever more competitive environment is astounding. It shows the quality of our beer and talent of our team.”

Firestone Walker received gold medals for its Velvet Merkin, Pale 31 and DBA (Double Barrel Ale) beers. Mission St. Pale Ale and Double Jack won silver in their respective categories, and Firestone Walker Extra Pale Ale won bronze.

At this year’s Great American Beer Festival competition, 3,930 beers from more than 500 breweries across the country were entered into 83 categories covering more than 100 styles of beer.