Christmas for the craft beer loving Floridian? It’s in March. The annual “Best Florida Beer” championship which was just held this month, judges beers brewed in craft batches from across the Sunshine State. Since categories are created based on the style of beer each brewer specifies upon entry, there’s no way to know precisely which column each brew will be filed under. But an absolute certainty each year is the growing strength of competition. With established Florida breweries honing their recipes and processes, and young brewers having more quality craft beer to inspire them – the “BFBC” is the pinnacle for “commercially brewed beers in the state of Florida”

For this year’s competition, the New Times BPB reported “87 brewers from throughout the state submitted 558 beers to be judged”. Broward-Palm goes on to detail the strong showing from South Florida’s finest brewers this year:

  • (Gold) LauderAle: Export Stout Black Mamba
  • (Silver) 26 Degree Brewing Company: American-Style Imperial Stout Ziko’s Rage
  • (Silver) Funky Buddha Brewery Inc: Chocolate Beer Nib Smuggler
  • (Silver) Funky Buddha Brewery Inc: Experimental Beer No Crusts
  • (Silver) Barrel of Monks Brewing: Belgian-Style Quadrupel Quadraphonic
  • (Bronze)Barrel of Monks Brewing: Pale American-Belgo-Style Ale Dry Hopped Endless Enigma
  • (Bronze) Barrel of Monks Brewing – Bronze: Wood- and Barrel-Aged Pale to Amber Beer Owen
  • (Silver) Mia Beer Co – Silver: Session India Pale Ale El Cuco
  • (Silver) Mia Beer Co – Bronze: South German-Style Hefeweizen Miami Weiss

“LauderAle”, the only S. FL brewery in the group to take home the gold, has been tinkering with their recipes since they opened their doors in 2013. They’ve grown quickly, but obviously in the right ways. Pumping out 40 barrels per month (using both locally grown hops, and those imported from Europe), via over 20 taps, LauderAle should be GPS’d into your new route home.

Hometown favorites “Funky Buddha Brewery” and “Barrel of Monks Brewing” each claimed at least a silver medal in various categories.