Champion Winter Beer of Britain

A full flavoured stout took the top honour at the Great British Beer Festival – Winter, held at the New Bingley Hall in Birmingham in February. Fixed Wheel Brewery’s Blackheath Stout (5% ABV) was crowned overall champion with Elland Brewery’s 1872 Porter (6.5% ABV) taking silver and Hawkshead’s strong old ale, Brodie’s Prime Export (4.9% ABV), taking bronze. These beers, plus the winner of the Old Age/Strong Milds category, Loddon’s Hocus Pocus, will now go forward to the National Champion Beer of Britain Competition which will take place on the opening day of the Great British Beer Festival at Olympia on 4 August.

The winning beer takes its name from Fixed Wheel’s location in the Black Country. It is described as a full-bodied fruity stout, brewed with New Zealand and English hops giving it an oaky bitterness and dark fruits finish. The brewery’s name comes from the owners’ love of cycling.

Gary Timmins, CAMRA’s National Director responsible for the competition, said, “Congratulations to Fixed Wheel for winning the Champion Winter Beer of Britain award, which is one of the highest accolades in the beer world. I would like to thank all the judges for their hard work and commend the brewers on the high quality of beers tasted. It was a very close competition and a well deserved win!

The full list of winners is as follows:

Barley Wine and Strong Old Ales
Gold: Hawkshead – Brodie’s Prime Export
Silver: Exmoor – Beast
Bronze: Lacon – Audit Ale

Old Aged and Strong Milds
Gold: Loddon – Hocus Pocus
Silver: Brunswick – Black Sabbath
Bronze: Tintagel – Caliburn

Porters
Gold: Elland – 1872 Porter
Silver: Fownes – King Korvak’s Saga
Bronze: Colchester – Old King Coel London Porter

Stouts
Gold: Fixed Wheel – Blackheath Stout
Silver: Barngate – Goodhew’s Dry Stout
Bronze: Plain – Inncognito

Christine Cryne