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Stella Artois Launches 2011 World Draught Masters Competition

With the U.S. Finals in Washington, D.C., the Nation-Wide Search For the Perfect Pour Begins Online and in Select Cities

ST. LOUIS –  Taking the Belgian beer experience to new heights of perfectly poured sophistication, Stella Artois has commenced the U.S. portion of its World Draught Masters competition, an annual event that honors beer connoisseurs’ mastery of the Stella Artois 9-Step Pouring Ritual.  On Oct. 7, U.S. finalists from across the country will rendezvous in Washington, D.C. at the celebrated National Building Museum to vie for the chance to move on to the global finals in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Inspired by more than six centuries of brewing tradition, the 15th annual Stella Artois World Draught Masters competition celebrates the elegance and skill that go into pouring the ultimate “Thing of Beauty” – a flawless chalice of Stella Artois, freshly drawn from a tap.

From Sept. 9 through Sept 30, seven U.S. cities —Miami, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Boston, Denver, New York and Washington, D.C. — will hold live competitions in which beer enthusiasts are trained in the 9-Step Pouring Ritual, then have the opportunity to showcase their command of the process. U.S. hopefuls outside those markets can still participate via the virtual pour competition on the Stella Artois Facebook Page.*
“Stella Artois’ 9-Step Pouring Ritual brings the care and craftsmanship that go into brewing our beer to the connoisseurs who enjoy it, ensuring that each chalice of Stella Artois is perfectly poured and preciously presented,”  said Alexander Lambrecht, Global Marketing Manager, Stella Artois.  “Our annual World Draught Masters competition celebrates the brand’s heritage and recognizes the most skillful Draught Masters from around the world.”

Winners from the seven semi-final markets, and one wild-card participant, will move on to the U.S. finals. The wild-card winner will be randomly chosen from the top national scorers in the virtual 9-Step Pouring Ritual game on the Stella Artois Facebook page.  To enter, fans can visit www.facebook.com/stellaartoisusa now through Noon CDT on Thursday, Sept. 15.  Those achieving a score of 90 or higher can fill out the official online entry form for a chance to win the wild-card entry to the Stella Artois U.S. Draught Masters Finals in Washington, D.C.

Ultimately, the U.S. winner will represent the United States at the 2011 Stella Artois World Draught Masters global finals in Buenos Aires, Argentina on Oct. 26.  At the world finals, participants from more than 28 countries will again demonstrate their beer-pouring expertise before a panel of distinguished judges, who will carefully examine each and every phase of the 9-Step Pouring Ritual. 

The marquee event in Buenos Aires continues the brand’s tradition of bringing the competition from its home country of Belgium to cosmopolitan cities around the globe.  In 2009, the event was held at the iconic New York Public Library and last year’s world finals were held at London’s historic Old Billingsgate. 

The Draught Master crowned at this year’s global competition will embark on a quest during which he/she visits more than 20 different countries as a Stella Artois brand ambassador and shares his/her passion and dedication to the craft of the perfect pour.  Over the next several months, 2010 World Draught Master Chris Myers, who represents the U.S., will travel the world, sharing his passion and dedication to the craft of the perfect pour.  Follow his journey online at www.stellaartois.com/WDM2011.

*The Facebook competition is open to all U.S. residents (except California) who are 21 years of age or older.

NOTE TO EDITORS: For more information and images, please visit: http://www.pwrnewmedia.com/2011/anheuser-busch/stella_world_draught_masters/index.html.

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