So today is the judging for the 2011 Champion Bottled Beer of Britain (CBBOB). I can't tell you the result yet of course, partly because the judging hasn't finished yet and partly because it's a blind tasting and the organisers won't even tell the judges which beers were which!
It's a very interesting competition though - the real ale CBOB competition gets the attention, yet as organiser Christine Cryne pointed out, in many ways CBBOB has greater reach. After all, you might see both winners in your local pub, but the CBBOB winner could also be in your local supermarket, and indeed in your living room.
CAMRA's Real Ale In a Bottle (RAIB) campaign is also striking chords with hotels and restaurants which cannot - yet - justify serving cask. Among the CBBOB judges were guests from this year's sponsor Hotel du Vin, and from past sponsor Travelodge, both of which see the best of British beer as a powerful addition to their menus.
This year's CBBOB candidates include some excellent golden bitters and ales, some stunning porters and stouts, and at least one wonderful "brown bitter" - and all will be on sale on Bar 8/Edwards.
The results - along with the CBOB results - will be out tomorrow at 3pm or thereabouts. Stay tuned...