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Town of Caledon sets new world record at beer & cider festival

June 20, 2019   ·   0 Comments


At this years Cheer’s Caledon Craft Beer & Cider festival, the Guinness World Record for the largest cider taste-testing event was broken, with 306 confirmed testers.

“Caledon not only has some of the best craft beer and cider producers in Ontario,” said Mayor Allan Thompson during last Friday’s festival. “But now we hold a Guinness World Record too.”

Official adjudicator Brittney Dunn, from Guinness World Records, was on hand to determine if a new record title had been achieved. The previous record holder for largest cider taste testing was set in September 2017 when the Oast House Pub in Manchester, UK managed to bring 225 testers together in one location. 

In its third year running, Cheers Caledon has become a big hit within the community. The festival showcases some of the best craft producers from across Ontario, such as Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery from Barrie, Ont., as well as five Caledon craft beer and cider producers. 

Volunteers were asked to help Dunn judge the festival, however they had to be impartial and not from the Town of Caledon.  

Dunn explained one of the rules specified a cider sommelier had to lead participants through a minimum of three ciders — with everyone participating at the same time. 

“We are fortunate in Caledon to have two amazing Cider companies with deep roots here,” said Heather Savage, manager of recreation services for the Town of Caledon. “Our cider sommelier was Thomas Wilson, owner/cider master of Spirit Tree Estate Cidery, and former chair of the Ontario Craft Cider Association.” 

Cheers Caledon also had the owner of Pommies Cider Co. join the stage to help “sommelier” the event. Pommies Cider Co. is a Caledon grown craft cider and was founded by husband and wife Nick and Lindsay Sutcliffe, who now run the business together. 

Another guideline for the record-breaking attempt was each judge had the responsibility of watching a section of no more than 50 people. The area enclosed had spots marked to specify who was watching each section, said Dunn. 

“There will be a few people who get disqualified for many different reasons, however, that doesn’t mean the record fails because you are allowed a 10 per cent fail rate,” said Dunn. 

The record was broken around an hour after the starting time and the rest of the night consisted of music, great food, and of course lots of craft beer and cider tasting. 

The five Caledon brewers at the festival were: Caledon Hills Brewing Co., Goodlot Farmstead Brewing Co. and Sonnen Hill Brewing and Caledon’s two cider companies. 

Brittney Dunn from Guinness World Record awarded Mayor Thompson with the certificate that names the Town of Caledon as the current record holder for largest taste-testing cider event. 

Dunn has been an adjudicator for the Guinness World Records for several years and said she had judged record-breaking events as big as 5,000 participants. 

“For a record under 1,000 people, you can count by using a clicker or tickets but any thing over 1000, need tickets, a barcode or a pre-approved method. And if it is over 50000 participants you need to hire an auditing firm because they don’t trust just anyone,” said Dunn.



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