Fullsteam Brewery announced Saturday that its Pear & Sumac saison, made with foraged ingredients, had won a 2021 Good Food Award. By midday Sunday, the brewery sold out of its remaining stock.

The seasonal beer, made with 50 percent local ingredients, relied on sumac stags from Fallawater Farm in Ashe County and pears from Durham’s Kash family farm, according to the brewery’s website. The saison, part of Fullsteam’s Pierre Delecto limited release series, is the eighth Good Food Awards victory for the Bull City brewery.

But Fullsteam wasn’t alone among local businesses. The Triangle raked in the awards this year, pulling in nine of the 11 received throughout the state. That’s more for the Triangle than neighboring states of South Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee combined. (Virginia purveyors performed better, bringing home six awards, but still fewer than the Triangle.)

Durham led the pack, as The Spicy Hermit also won for its green garlic kimchi and Valley Brook Farms medaled for its strawberry habanero pepper jelly. (Both are available online or at various local retailers listed on their websites.)

Chapel Hill ranked second with two victories—Cottage Lane Kitchen for its Cape Fear Spicy Pepper Relish and Chocolatay Confections for its Coffee Caramel Bar.

The awards recognized The Accidental Baker in Hillsborough for its Tuxedo Sesame Flatbread Crackers and Mrs. Ruth’s Jams in Apex for its Savory Apple flavor. The Triangle area’s two other winners: the bourbon truffle at Fera’wyn’s Artisan Chocolates in Holly Springs and the Black Garlic Rooster Sauce from Fiddlehead Farm in Pittsboro.

North Carolina’s other two medals went to James Creek Cider House in Cameron for its carbonated, semi-dry Russets & Twigs cider and Burtz Bees‘s wildflower honey in Dallas (no, not the famous Burt’s Bees brand, and yes, Dallas, North Carolina). Charlotte, the Triad, and the Asheville area all came up empty-handed.

The Good Food Awards, an annual celebration from the Good Food Foundation, announced winners during a virtual ceremony on Friday night. The awards aim to reward businesses that not only make delicious products, but also that use responsible practices. This year, the organization received nearly 2,000 entries and selected 475 winners across 17 categories, it said.

The Triangle has cleaned up at the awards in the past too, including repeated wins by the now-defunct Farmer’s Daughter in Hillsborough. In 2016, Farmer’s Daughter won multiple awards for its krauts and preserves. That year, Fullsteam also won, as did a variety of other locals slinging everything from cheese to dill pickles

It’s hard not to focus on Fullsteam, considering this is its eighth win. While the Pear & Sumac fall saison is no longer available, its Pierre Delecto series (of which this was a part) continues with a winter saison. The brewery recommends pairing the winter iteration with takeout from Ethiopian restaurant Goorsha. The beer is currently available on tap, curbside, or even by mail.

Of this year’s 15 beer-category winners, Fullsteam and Vista Brewing in Driftwood, Texas were the lone stars representing the South (I’m not counting Alexandria, Virginia—fight me). Similarly, only James Creek in North Carolina and Wise Bird Cider in Lexington, Kentucky hailed from the South in the awards’s cider section. (Three Southern distilleries won, representing Jackson, Mississippi, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Smithfield, Virginia.)

You can explore a map of the 2021 winners on the Good Food Awards website, or search by category from coffee to fish.

Follow Interim News Editor Eric Ginsburg on Twitter or send an email to eginsburg@indyweek.com.

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