TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Ratebeer.com recently released its list of the best brewers in the world for 2019 and a Tampa brewery made the top five.
Cigar City Brewing ranks fifth on the list, which measured performance for the year. The past four years of the website’s catalog were considered as well.
Vice President of Commercial Development Justin Clark spoke with 8 On Your Side on Monday about the honor.
“We’re really excited. We have a great team here, they’re passionate about what we do every day. They bring their creativity to the brewery every day,” he explained. “So it’s really nice when we get the opportunity to be recognized by our consumer group and as well as our peers by being on that list.”
Clark said there are 8,000 breweries in the United States, as well as international breweries, considered for the list. He said it doesn’t matter where they rank, they are thrilled by the acknowledgement.
Cigar City Brewing was founded by Tampa native Joey Redner in 2008, along with brewmaster Wayne Wambles.
“We’ve done, last time we looked, we’ve done well over 1,000 unique beers since we’ve been selling beer – since March of 2009. Because we have a really creative team and we’re always working on experimenting and trying new things,” Clark said.
Cigar City just finished work on its remodel of the taproom and now have a kitchen on site.
Their “Florida Man Double IPA” will soon go national, bringing Florida’s story across the country.
Clark said the brewery’s unofficial anniversary event will take place on March 13 at Amalie Arena. Twenty other breweries from the top 100 list will be there pouring beer.
St. Petersburg brewery Cycle Brewing placed 19th on the list, with Angry Chair Brewing in Tampa placing 78th.
“It was pretty exciting to look at the list and see so many other Tampa Bay breweries represented as well as other Florida breweries. Whether it’s the top beer list, best destinations. It’s exciting to have our piece of this scene that we’re building here in Tampa,” Clark said. “We were behind the rest of the country for so many years so it’s great to see Tampa and Florida acknowledged for the great beer we do have down here.”
Hill Farmstead Brewery in Greensboro, Vermont topped the list.
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