Saturday, 8 May 2010

SIBA - Wales & The West

So as you'll see from my previous post I just spent Friday judging beers in Ludlow for SIBA's regional Wales and The West competition.
Having never been to a beer competition as a judge before I was a bit overwhelmed at the start of the day.
The first category I was judging was Speciality and at my table, amongst others were my mate Melissa Cole and Pete Brown, Influential Beer Writer! ;-)
The beers themselves were nothing 'special' let alone speciality! There were a couple that stood out more than the others but putting them in a speciality category seemed to be a bit of a cop-out as they should probably have been in another category.

The second round I judged was Premium Bitters, it was the second round for this category and therefore all the shite had been weeded out by the time we got to this table. What a transformation! Oh my God! The best beers on the table were the last two we had, Salopian Prohibiiton, which eventually came overall third in the competition, and The Mutts Nutts by Spinning Dog Brewery, lovely chocolatey, roasted nuts.

For the record, Overall winner was Darwins Origin by Salopian so well done to Wilf and Jake you're making some fantastic beers, keep it up!

Another highlight of the trip was one of the local pubs, The Church, so named because it has a church behind it. It was serving the local beers on cask and boy were they good, I woke up with a terrible hangover on friday morning having spent all thursday night watching the election until 2.30am drinking Ludlow Gold a marvellous beer that you have to drink if you ever make it to Ludlow!

All in all a good couple of days out of town, it helps to break up the week a bit and I hope to be asked back next year!

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