The UK-based Beer Academy has recognised Australian brewer Bill Taylor, and US craft beer identity Garrett Oliver for their contributions to promoting the public understanding of beer.
The academy, whose mission is to enlighten, educate and enthuse about all aspects of beer, has created a new annual award of Honorary Beer Academy Sommelier and recently announced the pair as brewers who have been untiring ambassadors for beer both in their home markets and internationally.
Garrett Oliver, is Brewmaster at the Brooklyn Brewery in New York and Bill Taylor, Chief Brewer at Lion Breweries in Australia.
Beer Academy Director, Simon Jackson priased both for their contribution.
“The Beer Academy is all about building public knowledge about beer. I can safely say that no one in the world has done more to champion beer than Bill and Garrett,” he said.
“They are brewers with that rare skill of being able to make a very complex subject inspiring to the non-expert. Such is their ability that their influence extends far beyond their home markets of Australia and North America; they are internationally recognised as two of the finest beer communicators of their generation.
“The Beer Academy is increasingly acknowledged as […] provider of consumer beer education and these two exceptional ambassadors will allow us to take the beer message to even more people.”
While Garrett Oliver is well-known to many in the world of craft beer both through his beers and his book, The Brewmaster’s Table, Bill Taylor has also long been a champion of beer and food matching, publishing his own book, Beer and Food, in 2002, the year before Oliver’s guide was first published. Bill Taylor is also the man the Beer Diva Kirrily Waldhorn cites as being a major influence in her career as a beer educator. Her transformation started when she was working for Lion in the marketing department.
A working lunch with head brewer Bill Taylor provided Kirrily’s ‘Eureka’ moment!
“I’d never considered that beer didn’t have to be served in a pint glass and could be used in a culinary sense,” she said.
“Bill has definitely been a great mentor from an education and advice point of view. He took me under his wing at Lion Nathan and created a fantastic development program for me to improve my understanding of beer.”
While Bill adds the award to a the list he has received, he says he was surprised by the recognition.
“I am surprised and delighted by the decision of the Beer Academy to give this award,” he said.
“I am a passionate beer advocate and over the years have tried to engage with the community on the joy and rewards to be found in the world of beer in all its forms.
“From its fascinating history to it’s sensory delights , I think those of us in the industry have great stories and knowledge to share and we should do more.
The Beer Academy is doing great work and I am pleased to be a part of their growing community of beer advocates as a Beer Sommelier,” he said.
Taylor has recently be recognised within Lion for 40 years with the company, who provided the following statement:
Bill Taylor is one of Australia’s most accomplished brewers. Educated in Science and Business, Bill’s passion for brewing evolved into a career that has seen him brew, judge and speak on beer around the world.
Bill has also written articles for daily press and magazines around Australasia. After a decade of speaking on his passion for the opportunities and delights to be found in combining beer and food flavours at the table and in the kitchen Bill released his first book Beer and Food – A Celebration of Flavours in 2002. Bill has continued to share his knowledge and passion for beer at regional events around Australia and nationally through radio, television and documentaries on Lifestyle Food and the History channels and major Food Festivals such as Tasting Australia.
After starting his career at the Castlemaine Brewery in Brisbane, Bill is now Chief Brewer and Technical Director for the Lion Group of breweries across Australia and New Zealand. In 2004 Bill was made an Honorary Liveryman and Brewer of the City of London . He is a Fellow and Past President of the Institute of Brewing & Distilling and is currently Chairman of Judges of the “International Brewing Awards – since 1886” based in the UK and the world’s longest established brewing competition.
Beer Academy Australia has recently launched in Australia offering a range of consumer and industry training and education classes, including the Beer Sommelier accreditation.