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Froth Rookies brew up Indie Beer Award gold

Froth Rookies Brewing Co.'s Session Ale, brewed by TAFE Queensland students, has won gold at the recent Indie Beer Awards.

The Session Ale is joined on the podium by Froth Rookies Lager, awarded a silver and a bronze in the traditional lager category, with “Boomshakalager” taking bronze in the modern lager category.

The Independent Brewers Association (IBA) presented the awards featuring 1,348 beers from 190 breweries at the Indies Awards hosted on the Gold Coast.

Patrick Dennis, Director of Faculty, Tourism Hospitality and Personal Services at TAFE Queensland, is incredibly proud of the Froth Rookies’ achievements, which add to their impressive history at the awards.

“Our student brewers have always placed highly in brewing competitions, and it’s wonderful to see them go from one silver and one bronze in 2022 to double the number of medals in 2023.”

“It shows that the quality of beer our students make is improving yearly, which is great for everyone,” Mr Dennis said.

The winning beers were produced by students studying the Certificate III in Food Processing (Brewing) (FBP30121) as they learn the art of the amber ale under teachers from the industry at the Browns Plains BrewLab facilities and Mt Gravatt Nano brewery.

TAFE Queensland Brewing Educator Kate Stuart said that as well as winning medals, the awards were a wonderful experience for students on many levels.

“Our students participated as stewards and had a great experience participating in the prestigious event and being around brewers from the industry.”

When it came time for the winner’s announcement, Ms Stuart and the students were pleasantly surprised by their overall result.

“We’d worked hard, knew our beers were of good quality, and were hoping for at least one medal across our four entries. But we were absolutely over the moon to take home four medals, let alone our first-ever gold medal,” explained Ms Stewart.

“Beers are judged by appearance, aroma, taste, technical quality and trueness to style, and to achieve a gold medal, they must score well in all those categories.”

“Not only did we receive a gold medal, but all four of our entries were awarded a medal, which shows real consistency and ability in our students. Everyone at Froth Rookies should be very proud,” she said.

Mr Dennis said the win results from experienced mentors teaching their students the art of beer brewing, who then create industry-standard and award-winning beers.

“Training the next generation of Queensland brewers to produce products that are being recognised like this by the industry is amazing for everyone here at TAFE Queensland,” continued Mr Dennis.

“It shows that we are giving our students the knowledge, skills and guidance they need to brew world-class beer. It’s also amazing that the beer produced under the Froth Rookies label is as good as anything on the market.”

The beer brewed by the students is a total team effort, with the whole class brewing, canning and distributing a range of beers under the Froth Rookies label.

“The students learn how to write a beer recipe, translate that into a product specification for others to follow and how to hit the numbers when brewing the beer for the first time,” Mr. Dennis explained.

“The judges also gave us insights on what to improve. We will use this valuable industry feedback to modify and enhance the beers we brew as we advance.”

Established in 2019 with the support of the Queensland State Government, the TAFE Queensland course is succeeding in its aim to support the growth of Queensland’s brewing industry by providing the brewers of tomorrow.

“Our mission is to produce graduates who will help grow and improve Queensland’s beer industry. Better brewers will lead to better product quality outcomes, which will help lift the entire industry.”

“We are so proud to provide the industry with a pipeline of high-calibre award-winning professionals every year, and being recognised by the industry proves that our training is on the right track,” said Mr Dennis.