My beer is finally available! For those who don’t know, I was lucky enough to have a beer I entered into the CBA National Homebrew Competition last year take first place out of a total of 216 entries. My beer, Angry Yank Pale Ale, originally a 5.2% American Pale Ale featuring Cascade and Amarillo hops, won 1st place in the ‘Specialty’ class of the competition (a kind of ‘catch-all’ category for those beers that don’t fit into the usual categories of Bitter, Best Bitter, Strong Bitter, IPA, etc, commonly found in British beer competitions) and went on to take the Judge’s Choice award for the Beer of the Festival. There’s an article on Rooster’s website here.
Anyway, part of the prize was the opportunity to have my beer brewed commercially by Roosters Brewery, in North Yorkshire. This is every homebrewer’s dream, so to say I was excited at the prospect would be some understatement! After the agonisingly long wait between the competition in September 2010 and the brewday at Roosters in February 2011, I finally made the long drive from Essex to North Yorkshire to spend a day brewing my beer with Sean Franklin, the brewmaster of Roosters who owns the company alongside his lovely wife, Alison. I chronicled my (awesome) day at Roosters on the Jims Beer Kit forums. If you’re interested, take a look here.
The beer has been featured as part of JD Wetherspoons’ Spring Beer Festival, and will be available in every JDW pub (almost 800 at last count) in the UK during the festival. The festival itself runs from the 23rd of March until the 10th of April, and there are 50 beers featured in the festival. It’s worth mentioning, however, that as the pubs obviously won’t be able to put all 50 beers on at once, it may be a few days before your local gets their firkin of AYPA on tap. My local is the Battlesford Court in Witham, the manager assures me that it should be on by this weekend so I may have to go and hunt down a pint!