The Great Craven Arms Beer Festival

craven cruckbarn The Great Craven Arms Beer Festival

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  1. Landlord says:

    Yorkshire V Scotland

    The scene was set for a Yorkshire white wash as all prepared for the Great Craven Arms beer festival. Never before had Yorkshire lost to another area, and this year looked to be no exception with beers from the Celtic regions arriving for battle on a grim wet and drab Yorkshire weekend.

    But to everyone’s surprise there was not a pint of McEwan’s, Tennants, 70’ or 80’ to be seen in this youthful line up. Beers from some of the best independent brewers in Scotland had been chosen to represent the far northern colonies.

    In terms of product sold –Fyne Ale’s Jarl out sold everything with 70 pints consumed every four hours it looked like the pick of the show. Shortly after Fallen Brewery (another scot) sold out. Yorkshires most popular by demand was Ainsty’s Pale Ale which was 3rd to sell out.

    But quantity does not define quality and the votes cast over the event would be categoric proof of the festival favourite. The public would vote but not before the pipes of Saturday night and the call of FREEDOM er Time! On Sunday.

    The overwhelming conversation from the Festival was not how good the beer is in Yorkshire (that’s a given) but more to the point no one other than the festival organisers had recognised just how good Scottish brewing was before the event. A point well proven and perhaps an argument to make Scotland the 5th part of Yorkshires boundaries – ‘Far North Yorkshire’ a discussion for another day, lets get back to the beer.

    Bar Managers Choice – Drygates Seven Peaks IPA – ‘I love a good IPA and whilst there was several others on show this was the best drinking. Both Kirkstall and the Moonstone IPA’s where good but they proved to be a bit too much. The Drygates was strong and hoppy and very drinkable…. another one please!

    Landlords choice – Fallen Brewing Chew Chew – ‘A salted caramel stout – whatever next? But it was so good. The complexity of the flavours was intense. At 6% it’s not a session beer but as an experience it was my favourite overall. So good it must have been a Yorkshire beer….(sorry David it came all the way from Stirling!!!!)

    2nd place –in the public vote it was a dead heat between – Saltaire Amarilo, Fyne JARL and Fallen’s Chew Chew. 2 beers out of the 3 that came from over the border.

    Overall winner – Camper Van Breweries ‘hoppy botanist’ a rhubarb and crumble beer that was unbelievably easy drinking. And whilst it was the ‘marmite’ of the festival you either loved it or hated it. The voters loved it and we think even though it was from Scotland a deserved winner.

    As for which area won was it Yorkshire or Far North Yorkshire (Scotland)- well there was nothing between them and the competition was announced a draw. Both regions amassed the same number of votes and whilst Yorkshire had an even spread over the range, Scotland had some real favourites.

    In summary you can’t beat Yorkshire, but you can try some bloody good beers trying!

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