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Matter of Beer: Award-Winning Brews to Enjoy This Summer

At the 2023 Canadian Brewing Awards, British Columbia breweries brought home 45 awards. Local winners include Small Gods Brewing, Hoyne, Whistle Buoy, Île Sauvage, Moon Under Water and Sooke Oceanside.

We’re ridiculously lucky to be surrounded by not only the number of small, local breweries that are putting out great beers and food but consistently award-winning breweries that keep the spotlight on how good those beers are in comparison to breweries across the country and around the world.

June 3rd was quite the day for several local breweries as the Canadian Brewing Awards were handed out in Halifax. From 59 categories awarded, British Columbia breweries brought home 45 awards, including 16 gold, 17 silver, and 12 bronze. Locally, Small Gods Brewing won two awards, while Hoyne, Whistle Buoy, Île Sauvage, Moon Under Water and Sooke Oceanside each brought home trophies of their own.

Sean Hoyne with a glass of the gold medal winning Finnegan's Dry Irish Stout. (Courtesy Hoyne Brewing)

For Small Gods, without even being open a full year, they won gold for their Promised Land Session Ale, and Silver for their Neverending German-style pilsner, which is always a favourite to try from their slow-pour tap. Hoyne won gold for their Finnegans Dry Irish Stout, Whistle Buoy got Silver for their Garden City Fieldberry Sour, Île Sauvage brought home bronze for their Raspberry Sour, Moon Under Water added a Silver to the multiple awards won over the years by their Potts Pils, and Sooke Oceanside took the bronze for their Graveyard of the Pacific Imperial Red Ale.

Port Alberni’s Twin City was also one of the big winners with the most individual awards with four, three bronze and a silver, continuing to showcase what has become an amazing beer scene in the Alberni Valley in addition to Dog Mountain’s gold medal win for their Friar’s Belgian Quad.

All of those awards are in addition to the World Beer Cup awards that were handed out back in May, where Sooke Brewing Company won gold for the best Barleywine-Style Ale in the world, which is a tremendous feat at what is typically referred to as the Olympics of Beer.


Mentioning Île Sauvage, if you’ve swung by recently, you’ll know that they’ve launched a brand new menu and food program, including a selection of sandwiches and rice bowls, along with some new choices for snacks and sides, so if you’re in the Rock Bay area, there’s a whole new list of things to try alongside their fantastic beer options. If you’re looking for an inside tip, check out the nachos. Pulled pork, pico de gallo, cheese, guacamole, and sriracha lime dip work together as a perfect match to their sour beers.