Firstly, let me congratulate Coniston Brewery on landing the Champion Beer of Britain prize, at the Great British Beer Festival, at London's Olympia.
Their No.9 Barley Wine is now No.1 for 2012! It was only the second barley wine to ever scoop the award.
Their beer is not for faint hearts however, as it has a whopping ABV of 8.5%. It is a classic golden ale.
Mind you, there may be a problem locating this golden brew, as it's only brewed once a year, at the small brewery, located at the rear of the Black Bull in Coniston, at the edge of the lakeside.
After the brewing process in October, the beer is left to mature in tanks, before it is unleashed on the public in December. So from a brewery that only has a 10 barrel capacity, I reckon this champion ale will be a rare commodity, and be difficult to hunt down. Still, a great achievement from this small northern brewer. And we wish them continued success.
Other top awards won by brewers, here up north, was Rudgates, from North Yorkshire, for their Ruby Mild.They claimed the Mild gold medal.
Another 'top dog' went to the Purple Moose Brewery, from Gwynedd in North Wales, who won the gold medal in the Bitters section, for their Snowdonia Ale.
More gold medal success was landed in the speciality catergory, with Dunham Massey from Altrincham, Gtr.Manchester. Their Chocolate Cherry Mild @3.8%, wowing the judges.
Finally, the Little Valley Brewery from Hebden Bridge in West Yorkshire, is worthy of a mention. Their 'Hebden's Wheat' won silver in the same catergory as the Dunham Massey brew, making it a northern one, two, in the Speciality Beers section.