Tuesday 31 December 2013

The Golden Pint Awards 2013

Here's my Golden Pints for the year, though as a craft beer drinker I haven't actually drunk any pints this year and Golden Schooners would be more appropriate

· Best UK Cask Beer

The best this year last year's Champion Beer of Britain: Coniston Old No. 9. And it was free. Shame it was a mid-week night and I was busy at work, it was gorgeous.

· Best UK Keg Beer

Good job I left this post 'til the end of the year as I don't think I drank any UK keg beer until 20th December. Having successfully avoid it all year at my thai boxing club's xmas do they had keg cobra on draught. It was rubbish but as I'm pretty sure it 's the only UK keg beer I've drunk this year it has to get the award. .

· Best UK Bottled or Canned Beer

Sharp's Quadrupel Ale. It's very good indeed, and even managed to make the Simcoe hop work, so definitely my bottled beer of the year.

· Best Overseas Draught Beer

That would be the strong stout from De Molen I had in Barcelona.

· Best Overseas Bottled or Canned Beer

Orval, again.

· Best Collaboration Brew

I don't get excited about beer collaborations, they tend to seem a bit gimmicky. I've probably drunk a few over the past year but none stand out.

· Best Overall Beer

Coniston Old No. 9.

I don't suppose I'll be seeing it on draught again anytime soon. I have got a bottle in the cupboard I can console myself with but it's not the same.

· Best Branding, Pumpclip or Label

Not that I've seen the label, and it is all a bit po-faced, but the Ghost Drinker/Partizan nipple thing made me laugh so it's getting the gong this year.

· Best UK Brewery

Most of my fellow beer geeks have as usual gone for the same select few to praise. Perhaps someone could do a top ten type chart so we can see which breweries have come in and out of fashion? I'm sticking to local this year as I've been most impressed with my closest brewery: Thurstons.

· Best Overseas Brewery

Must be Orval I guess.

· Best New Brewery Opening 2013

Again, not one I get excited about as I like to let breweries bed in a little before I drink their beer but I was keen to try a beer from Burning Sky  and was impressed when I did.

· Pub/Bar of the Year

Islington Craft Beer Co.: a specialist beer pub, not a bar.

· Best New Pub/Bar Opening 2013

Dunno.Not sure if I've been anywhere new this year.

· Beer Festival of the Year


· Supermarket of the Year

Booths, still got the the best selection.
· Independent Retailer of the Year

Cobbett's Real Ales comes close, but no Orval so Nobel Green Wines

· Online Retailer of the Year

The only beer I've bought online came from Fuller's so it will have to be them.

· Best Beer Book or Magazine

For the Love of Hops, if you haven't got a copy you should.

· Best Beer Blog or Website

Got to be Boak and Bailey this year. Always a favourite but it's very impressive to see they've actually got even better this year.

· Best Beer App

Only recently got a smart phone so still lagging behind on this one.

· Simon Johnson Award for Best Beer Twitterer

Stan Hieronmyus tweeting about my Craft Beer/grapefruit thing lead to someone asking if he could include it in a book of beer quotations. I'm tickled pink about this so it's Stan this year.
· Best Brewery Website/Social media

No really something I generally pay much attention to so I can't think of anything that's stood out.

· Food and Beer Pairing of the Year

Another thing I don't often pay much attention to as it all seems like a doomed attempt to move beer into the realm of wine culture. But I have been at a beer and food pairing event this year and Kriek and chocolate brownies went very well together.

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