Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Hobsons Mild ale voted best beer in the UK

Hobsons Mild from Hobsons Brewery in Shropshire was today judged to be the best beer in Britain by a panel of brewers, beer writers and journalists at the Great British Beer Festival at Earls Court.

The beer is described in the 2007 edition of CAMRA's Good Beer Guide as: “A classic mild. Complex layers of taste come from roasted malts that predominate and give lots of flavour.”

The Shropshire brewed beer was chosen as the overall winner from over fifty finalists in eight categories including beers from tiny micros to major regional brewers.

Roger Protz, one of the finalist judges and Editor of the Good Beer Guide said: “It’s a great victory for a traditional British beer. It’s bursting with flavour and, unusually for a Mild, it’s got plenty of hop character.

“It’s great to see a classic copper coloured beer take the top award.”

Nick Davis, Director of Hobsons said: “What a great surprise! It’s a nutty mild and despite being only 3.2% abv it’s packed full of flavour.

“I would like to thank all the team at Hobsons in Cleobory Mortimer for their outstanding work in achieving this prestigious award.”

The Silver award went to Mighty Oak brewery in Essex for their Maldon Gold. The Bronze was awarded to Green Jack brewery in Suffolk for Ripper.

CATEGORY WINNERS – Note: The winner of the Champion Winter Beer of Britain (“Ripper” from Green Jack Brewery in Suffolk) was already in the final after being entered in February at the National Winter Ales Festival.

Gold: Hobsons Mild (Cleobory Mortimer, Shropshire 01299 270 837)
Silver: Nottingham Rock Mild (Radford, Nottingham, 0115 942 2649)
Bronze: Brains Dark (Cardiff, 029 2040 2060)

Gold: Castle Rock Harvest Pale (Nottingham, 0115 985 1615)
Silver: Twickenham Crane Sundancer (Twickenham, Middlesex, 020 8241 1825)
Joint Bronze: Surrey Hills Ranmore Ale (Gilford, Surrey, 01483 212 812)
Joint Bronze: Fyne Piper's Gold (Cairndow, Argyll, 01499 600 238)

Best Bitters
Gold: Purple Moose Glaslyn Ale (Porthmadog, Gwynedd, 01766 515 571
Silver: George Wright Pipe Dream (Rainford, Merseyside, 01744 886 686)
Joint Bronze: Fuller's London Pride (London W4, 0208 996 2000)
Joint Bronze: Nethergate Suffolk County (Sudbury, Suffolk, 01787 283 220)
Joint Bronze: Station House Buzzin' (Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, 0151 356 3000)

Strong Bitters
Gold: York Centurion's Ghost (North Yorks, 01904 621 182)
Silver: Inveralmond Lia Fail (Inveralmond, Perth 01738 449 448)
Bronze: Brains SA Gold (Cardiff, 029 2040 2060)

Speciality Beers
Gold: Nethergate Umbel Magna, (Sudbury, Suffolk, 01787 283 220)
Silver: Little Valley Hebden Wheat, (Hendon, West Yorks 01422 883 888
Bronze: St Peter's Grapefruit, (Bungay, Suffolk, 01986 782 322)

Golden Ales
Gold: Mighty Oak Maldon Gold (Maldon, Essex 01621 843 713)
Silver: Oak Leaf Hole Hearted, Gosport, Hampshire, 023 9251 322
Bronze: Otley 01 (Pontypridd, Mid Glamorgan, 01443 480 555)

In CAMRA’s Champion Bottled Beer of Britain Competition, the awards went to:

Gold: O’Hanlon’s Port Stout (Devon 01404 822 412)

Joint Silver: Titanic Stout (Staffordshire 01782 823 447)

Joint Silver: Wye Valley Dorothy Goodbody’s Wholesome Stout (Herefordshire 01885 490 505)

Bronze: Wapping Baltic Gold (Merseyside, 0151 707 2242)

Judging at the Champion Beer of Britain finals is done on the morning of the first day of the Festival starting at 10.30am. Judging is carried out by panels of 6 tasters drawn from CAMRA trained tasters, brewers, licensees, beer writers, and a smattering of personalities, MPs etc who are beer drinkers. All tasting is done blind, in so far as the judges know which class of beer they are judging but do not know which are the particular beers.

Each panel judges about 6 or 7 beers from a class such as Bitter, Speciality Beers and Golden Ales and chooses a first, second and third. The winners of all the classes go on to the final judging panel where a new panel of judges taste the beers to judge the Champion Beer of Britain (typically, the bitter and best bitter classes include more entries, and therefore the gold and silver category winners go through to the final). The winner is then announced later in the day during the Trade Session at the Great British Beer Festival.

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