Columbia Co. brewer named among world's 10 best newbies

A fledgling Columbia County brewery has burst on the scene with a major international award unveiled today.

The Suarez Family Brewery, which officially opened last June, was ranked No. 10 in the "Best New Brewers in the World" category, according to the annual RateBeer Best competition, which is dribbling out its awards results this week from its Santa Rosa, CA, event.

"These are the top brewers who started collecting their first ratings on or after Q3 2015. Considering there were more than 6,500 new worldwide brewers registered in this period, these 10 are an extremely elite bunch of the freshman class," the announcement says.

"Dan Suarez and Taylor Cocalis Suarez have made their brewery in the small town of Livingston, NY, population 3,646. Here they create farmhouse, mixed fermentation beers, small hop forward beers and Dan's darling -- unfiltered pilsners. Taylor has as one of the brewery's guiding principles: 'You have the responsibility to make beers that are part of a specific point of view that you have. The job of someone who's really good at what they do is not always to give people what they say they want.' "

In the same category, Foam Brewers, founded last year in Burlington, VT, is ranked No. 6. Others in the category are from Belgium, Oklahoma, California, Florida, Oregon, Virginia, the Netherlands, and Poland.

In the top beers, brewers and new brewers ranked by subregions (states), Suarez Family obviously was the top newbie in New York State, with top beer and top brewer honors going to Double Barrel Jesus from Evil Twin Brewing, a Brooklyn brewer with Danish roots.

The Suarez operation is located at 2278 Route 9 in Livingston, about 10 miles from Hudson. Phone: (518) 537-6464.

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• Go here for Dowd's New York Wines Notebook

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