Shauna Norris

Sarasota-Based Gold Coast Eagle Distributing Recognized with Top Anheuser-Busch Award for Wholesalers

Col. John Saputo and Team Receiving Big Jake Statue Sar. and Brad. Co. Commissioners and Brad. Mayor SM

Sarasota, Florida – October 27, 2017 – Colonel John Saputo and his team at Gold Coast Eagle Distributing received the esteemed Ambassadors of Excellence Big Jake Award from representatives of Anheuser-Busch at a special presentation event on Thursday, October 12, 2017 in the Gold Coast Eagle Distributing Hospitality Room. More than 100 guests comprised of employees and spouses, Manatee and Sarasota County commissioners, Bradenton Mayor Wayne Poston, and other dignitaries were in attendance.

“I feel fulfilled,” said Colonel John Saputo, owner and president of Gold Coast Eagle Distributing. “You have all bought into my dream, and we have won. We are on top of the beer mountain and I am proud to be your Bud.”

Named after the largest-ever Clydesdale, the Ambassadors of Excellence Big Jake Award is the company’s highest honor and recognizes top-performing wholesalers for their commitment to excellence in all facets of their operation, including facilities and fleet management, sales, marketing and community outreach. Only 23 out of 465 Anheuser-Busch distributers in the United States have ever achieved this distinction. As the recipient, Saputo was presented with the symbolic Big Jake red jacket, and 185+ Gold Coast Eagle employees were given championship rings.

“Ambassadors of Excellence is the Super Bowl of the beer business,” said Gil “The Rock” Morelle, senior sales director at Anheuser-Busch as he presented the award to Colonel Saputo. “It takes a lot of blood, sweat and beers to get here.”

Anheuser-Busch requires wholesalers to be Gold Status for three consecutive years to be considered for this award. In 2015, Gold Coast Eagle was awarded the Wholesaler of the Year, earning a perfect score of 1,000 out of 1,000 for its implementation of key business processes and initiatives to consistently deliver exceptional results to more than 1,600 retail customers.

About Gold Coast Eagle

Established by Colonel John Saputo in 1996, Gold Coast Eagle Distributing is part of a vast network of shippers providing the most extensive and efficient beer distribution system in the brewing industry. The award-winning company sells and markets all brands produced by Anheuser-Busch and many imported and craft beers in Manatee and Sarasota counties. They service over 1,600 supermarkets, convenience stores, taverns, restaurants, clubs and bars on a weekly basis. For more information, call 941-355-7685, or visit

Grapevine Communications provides full-service advertising, marketing and public relations services to clients nationwide. The firm is the most award-winning advertising agency in Sarasota, Florida, and the surrounding areas. For more information on Grapevine Communications, contact Shaunna Norris ( at 941-351-0024 or visit the website at