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Michael Jackson's report on the winners of this year's Great British Beer Festival

Tasted recently (blindfold), in judging the final round of the Great British Beer Festival:

* The winner, Wherry Bitter, from the Woodforde micro-brewery, near Norfolk, in the east of England. My tasting notes said: Bright, orangey gold color; good head and lacework; very hoppy aroma; good malt background (Carapils?); hoppy flavors (orange, lemon, lime?); spicy finish.

* Runner-up, Digger's Gold Strong Ale, from the Cheriton micro-brewery, Alresford, Hampshire, in the south. Gold to brass color; good head; fruity aroma; very smooth (almost "slippery"), with some malty sweetness; very good balancing, hoppy, dryness; very long finish.

* Third place, Banner Bitter, from the Butterknowle micro-brewery, in Bishop's Auckland, County Durham, in the north. Bright gold, with an especially good head; some woody, piney, hop notes in the aroma and palate. Very dry.

The last beer is one of the new entries in the fifth American edition of my Simon and Schuster Pocket Guide to Beer, completed earlier this year, and hitting the bookshops about now.

Published Online: OCT 1, 1997
Published in Print: OCT 1, 1997
In: Beer Hunter Online

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