After a year of local tasting panels and regional heats leading up to the finals, CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, is today proud to announce that Mighty Oak brewery's Oscar Wilde has been crowned the 'Best Beer' in Britain at the Great British Beer Festival, Earls Court, London.That makes three of the past five years. The intervening years were won by bitters. None of the past five winners was north of 4% and in fact, you have to go back to 2004 to find a beer that exceeded 5%.
Oscar Wilde, which has an ABV of 3.7%, is described in CAMRA's Good Beer Guide 2011 as a 'roasty dark mild with suggestions of forest fruits and dark chocolate. A sweet taste yields to a more bitter finish'.
I'm not going to make the argument that American hopheads are about to start falling down for three-and-a-half percent 15 IBU milds. But it goes to show that serious beer fans can be serious about something other than double IPAs. Bully for them.
IMAGE: THE INDEPENDENT