Keighley Beer Festival 2013 is proud to have been chosen once again to host one of the CAMRA Champion Beer of Britain regional tasting panels. In previous years we have judged the champion beer for Yorkshire and the North East for various beer styles (bitter, stout, porter, mild amongst others). In 2013 we have been selected to host the competition for the Old Ales/Strong Milds category. A tasting panel of five or six judges will sample a selection of beers in this style nominated by CAMRA branches across Yorkshire and North East in a blind judging to pick the winner of the regional award. Expect a good selection of beers of this type on the beer list - we need to order some extras just to keep the judges guessing!
The dates and venue for Keighley Beer Festival 2013 have now been confirmed. Following positive feedback from last year‘s customers, the festival will stay at Central Hall, Alice Street, Keighley, our venue in 2012, but returns to its original dates, the 26th to 28th September i.e. the last weekend in September.
The festival, the 25th CAMRA beer festival in Keighley, will feature up to 70 real ales, along with a selection of real ciders and perries made the tradtional way. This year will see the re-introduction of foreign bottled beers, dropped last year because of space limitations, providing more choice for friends less keen on British beer. And not forgetting the ever popular tombola......
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Last weekend, members of Keighley and Craven Campaign for Real Ale welcomed both regular and new real ale drinkers to the 24th Keighley Beer Festival. Around a thousand customers sampled the delights of over 65 real ales and 12 ciders and perries at Keighley‘s Central Hall on Alice Street. Trade was steady but the festival did not sell out, and latecomers on Saturday were able to enjoy well over half of the beers originally on offer. 16 new members joined CAMRA and over 60 customers signed the e-Petition which calls on the government to scrap the Beer Duty escalator, with many more promising to do so when they got home. The Keighley town mayor (Cllr. George Metcalf) and deputy mayor (Cllr Sally Ann Walker) paid a visit on Thursday evening, when the deputy mayor officially opened the festival and chatted to customers. Unfortunately Keighley and Ilkley MP Kris Hopkins did not attend despite promising in advance that he would like to come.
The Beer of the Festival winner (as voted by the customers) was ‘Long Way From Home’ from the Ridgeside Brewery in Leeds, a 5% ABV oatmeal stout, subtly flavoured with real vanilla pods. Runner-up was Plum Porter from the Titanic Brewery in Staffordshire, with Keighley‘s own Goose Eye brewery and Downton Brewery from Wiltshire sharing third prize with Over and Stout and Apple Blossom Ale respectively. Gwent Y Draig Two Trees Perry and Gwatkin Squeal Pig Perry were joint winners of the Cider/Perry of the Festival.
The festival also hosted the Yorkshire and the North East regional heat in the ‘Bitter’ category of Champion Beer of Britain 2013. This is decided by a panel of 6 judges in a blind tasting. Timothy Taylor Boltmaker (formerly Timothy Taylor Best Bitter) came out top. This will go on to the national competition next summer.
Keighley Beer Festival starts its final day today (Saturday 8th September) with an almost full complement of beers, ciders and perries. 64 of the starting line-up of 66 real ales are still available alongside 9 ciders and 3 perries, with a couple of ciders in reserve. There should be plenty left to last through to last orders at 9 o'clock and it is very unlikely we will run out this year.
The beer festival, located in Central Hall in Alice Street, Keighley, opens at 11 o'clock and admission is £2. (CAMRA members will get in free on production of a valid membership card.)
Reasonably priced food is available all day. Sorry, but children and dogs cannot be admitted. Click the map (right) for a larger (Googlemaps) map of central Keighley.