Blog: Barley wine... is it fine?
James Wilmore | 8 August 2012
Barley wine. I have to admit, it's a beer style I'm not that familiar with, despite originating from the ancient Greeks, but yesterday in London I got the chance to sup a sample. It wasn't just any old barley wine though. It was the Campaign for Real Ale's (CAMRA) newly-crowned Champion Beer of Britain 2012.
The brew in question was 'No.9 Barley Wine', from Cumbria-based brewery Coniston. Coming in at an abv of 8.5%, which is actually on the weaker side for this style, a third of a pint was plenty. The judges at the Great British Beer Festival said it was "reminiscent of a fine Cognac". It was certainly full-bodied, but perhaps a bit on the sweet side for me.
It was also CAMRA's Champion Winter Beer of Britain, which perhaps tells its own story.
Who knows, it may spark a resurgence in barley wines? Or, it may not.
But, in this Olympic year, it's fitting that CAMRA has again chosen a non-mainstream English beer style as its champion. Perhaps, it's also a two-fingered salute to the mass-produced brews the organisation rails against.
After all, we here in the UK love an underdog.
Here's a round-up of the top stories on just-drinks last week, featuring PepsiCo and Coca-Cola Co, Castel, Molson Coors and the cachaca sector....
There was a big focus on supermarkets and their Scotch offerings this week when a couple of own-brand malts scooped top awards at the International Wines and Spirits Competition (IWSC)....
You can't seem to move at the moment for news of US craft brewers expanding....
Here's a round-up of the top stories on just-drinks last week, featuring Coca-Cola Life, Australian Vintage, Pernod Ricard and BrewDog....
- Analysis - SABMiller's Australian issues continue
- just The Preview - Diageo's FY preliminaries
- Focus - SABMiller's Q1 Performance by Region
- PepsiCo to consider more re-franchising - CEO
- Brazil could have been worse - Coca-Cola Co CEO
- Diageo's Captain Morgan Facebook ad banned
- Diageo silent over Shuijingfang writedown report
- Sales, profits fall at Moet Hennessy in H1
- Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte appoints new CEO
- Molson Coors CEO to retire