Great British Beer Festival has a mild finish

Hobsons Mild from Hobsons Brewery in Shropshire was named best beer in Britain by a panel of brewers, beer writers and journalists at the Great British Beer Festival.

The beer is described in the 2007 edition of "CAMRA's Good Beer Guide" as "a classic mild; complex layers of taste come from roasted malts that predominate and give lots of flavour.”

The Shropshire beer was chosen as the overall winner from more than 50 finalists in eight categories, including beers from tiny micros to major regional brewers. Roger Protz, one of the finalist judges and editor of the "Good Beer Guide," said, “It's a great victory for a traditional British beer. It's bursting with flavor and, unusually for a Mild, it's got plenty of hop character. It's great to see a classic copper-colored beer take the top award.”

The overall silver award went to Mighty Oak brewery of Essex for its Maldon Gold, and the overall bronze to Green Jack Brewery of Suffolk for Ripper.

Category Winners: (The winner of the Champion Winter Beer of Britain -- Ripper from Green Jack -- already was in the final after being entered in February at the National Winter Ales Festival)

Milds: Gold, Hobsons Mild; Silver, Nottingham Rock Mild; Bronze, Brain's Dark.

Bitters: Gold, Castle Rock Harvest Pale; Silver, Twickenham Crane Sundancer; Bronze (tie), Surrey Hills Ranmore Ale and Fyne Piper's Gold.

Best Bitters: Gold, Purple Moose Glaslyn Ale; Silver, George Wright Pipe Dream; Bronze (tie), Fuller's London Pride and ethergate Suffolk County & Station House Buzzin'.

Strong Bitters: Gold, York Centurion's Ghost; Silver, Inveralmond Lia Fail; Bronze, Brain's SA Gold.

Speciality Beers: Gold, Nethergate Umbel Magna; Silver, Little Valley Hebden Wheat; Bronze, St. Peter's Grapefruit.

Golden Ales: Gold, Mighty Oak Maldon Gold; Silver, Oak Leaf Hole Hearted; Bronze, Otley 01.

CAMRA Bottle-conditioned Beers: Gold, O'Hanlon's Port Stout; Silver (tie), Titanic Stout and Wye Valley Dorothy Goodbody's Wholesome Stout; Bronze, Wapping Baltic Gold.

Blind judging was done by panel of tasters drawn from CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale)-trained tasters, brewers, licensees, beer writers, and guest tasters.

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