South Floridian Wins National Duvel Pouring Competition
Mike Meredith SFL competitor Brian Torres concentrating on his final, and winning, pour.
This past Saturday, ten contestants from all across the country, including places like Boston, Cleveland, San Francisco and San Diego, converged on Miami Beach's Shore Club for the first annual National Duvel League Finals, the brewery's country-wide beer pouring competition.
It was an evening of competitive fun and an attempt to come out on top in order to secure the prize of a trip to Belgium for a tour of some of Belgium's top breweries.
So who were these contestants? Plucked from regional wholesaler networks, they were local winners of similar competitions in their markets and now flown in to sunny Miami by Duvel.
On a most basic level, this is a marketing event, hosted by the Duvel Moortgart Brewery for its distribution partners, so that they can practice 'trickle down beerconomics' with retailers: evangelizing the Duvel brand through better product knowledge. But as we have seen in the past, the beer industry doesn't always take itself too seriously, and it's always helpful to remind everyone that at the end of the day, 'it's just beer'.
The competition was set up as a four round bracket elimination, with two pourers going head to head to determine who would advance to the next round. The pours were done with various speeds, heights, head levels, and degrees of concentration. The judges, made up of the national head of sales, the COO and CEO, gave weight to individual aspects of each pour and determined the winners of each round.
Mike Meredith Creating the proper amount of head with a pour from height.
Since everyone loves a good competition, especially when free flowing Duvel is involved, as the rounds progressed, so did the Olympic-sized cheering from the gathered crowd. Huddled whispers turned to outbursts of excitement as competitors finished pouring their glasses.
The winner, after four rounds of intense scrutiny, was Brian Torres, sales representative for Brown Distributing who covers southern Palm Beach and northern Broward counties. After being inundated with Duvel-themed prizes (and opening the celebratory champagne-style 750ml bottle of Duvel), we managed to sneak him off for a few minutes to get a few words.