Beer Beer Beer

Whole Foods Market Seeking Beer Judges for the Sixth Annual Beer-Offs

Can you expound -- at great length -- on the differences between a porter and a stout? Are you the go-to guy/gal in your group when it comes time to pick out the brews for poker night? Do you live for bracket-style elimination tournaments? If the answer to all of these is a resounding yes, Whole Foods Market in Coral Springs needs your help.

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The Coral Springs store is gearing up for its sixth annual Beer-Offs on Saturday, February 2, and they're in search of 50 beer judges to help select the "Ultimate Taste Test Champion." Interested applicants must be 21 years or older with the ID to prove it. Register to participate at the store's customer service area. Judges will be chosen on a first come basis.

The eight players in the face-off are: Samuel Adams Imperial White, Weihenstephaner Hefe Weissbier, Hofbrau, Palm Amber Beer (the 2012 winner), Boddingtons Pub Ale, Murphy's Irish Stout, Cigar City Maduro Brown Ale, and Innis & Gunn Rum Cask.

Jonny Rose, marketing team leader for Whole Foods Market Coral Springs, said the competition will take place in the store's cafe. In honor of Super Bowl 2013, which goes down the following day, the beers will be listed on a bracket-style board. Each participant will receive a ballot and a sample of each beer, with beers advancing through the ranks until one beer is crowned the winner.

If you're picturing sloshed judges stumbling around the fancy olive section post-competition, not to worry. Rose said the samples will be modest and participants have the option to treat it like a wine tasting (swirl, sniff, sip, swish, and spit).

"It's a really fun event and a good time of year for it," Rose said of the football-tournament-inspired competition. "Hopefully it will introduce some new beers to people."

In line with the public's increased interest in well-made beer, Whole Foods Market in recent years has expanded its craft beer selection and event offerings. The Coral Springs location offers the popular option for customers to create their own six-pack.

"We have a very big following with our beers," Rose said, adding that participants in the Beer-Offs are known to get into the excitement of the competition.

"They root on their favorites," Rose said.

The event is open to the public, and there's no cost to be a judge. The store will be collecting canned goods for Broward Outreach Center before and during the event.