Ultra by Dawkins Ales, a strong IPA brewed with American and New Zealand hops, was named overall cask beer champion, with Exmoor Beast by Exmoor Ales – a rich, strong British ale – taking home the overall top spot in the small pack competition, which judges beers in bottles and cans.
Buster Grant, SIBA national chairman and brewer at Brecon Brewing in Wales, said: “The SIBA south-west beer competition is our oldest regional competition and the standard gets higher every year.
“This year, we saw two great examples of full-flavoured strong beers in two very different styles take home the top honours – which I think perfectly sums up the vibrant brewing scene we have in the UK, where brewers are both inspired by the past and looking to the future.”
Diversity of south-west beers
Grant added that the awards were a great opportunity to show the “huge diversity” of beers now available in the south-west.
"Winning the overall champion [category] is great because it gives recognition to all the hard work everyone puts in,” said Pete Howson, brewer at Dawkins Ales.
“When you look at a brilliant beer festival like this one, you look at all the beers that are here and who you’re up against, the amount of love and energy that goes into producing such great-quality beer, and it’s amazing to be standing right at the top of that with our beer.”
Jonathan Price, owner of Exmoor Ales, added: “To win this award means a great deal to our brewing team and we’re very proud of the beer, which was obviously a hit with judges”.
The awards, which took place at Tucker’s Maltings Beer Festival on 27 April, are judged by fellow brewers and other representatives from the industry.