Yes it’s that time of year again. Brewers and commentators round the globe await with baited breath the results of my awards for 2014. But aren’t you a bit late, Tyson, old boy, I hear you cry? Not at all. To fairly sum up a year; one should really wait until New Year’s Eve has passed. For you never know: you may have the greatest beer of your life on that evening and made your awards redundant. Ok you’re more likely to get an elbow in the ribs from the amateur hogging the bar and puke on your shoes in the taxi queue, but one lives in hope.
Anyway, without further ado, here are the Golden Pints for 2014. I’ve tried to be slightly more scientific this year (yes, really) and used Untappd and the National Beer Scoring System in helping to come up with these results. Bite me.
Best UK Cask Beer: The usual suspects feature but the scoring doesn’t lie. Oakham Citra/Inferno, and Hawkshead Windermere Pale top the charts for the most drunk and enjoyed.
Best UK New Cask Beer: A late contender just edged it here. Brewsmith Pale has been consistency itself and is ultra-drinkable. For the hopheads, anyway.
Best One Off Brew: The Simcoe Kid from the Maxim Brewery was so good we abandoned all plans and stayed until the barrel ran out.
Best UK Keg: Hmmm. Some high profile names slipped up badly this year and there seems to be as much shite keg produced now as there is cask. Again I let the figures do the talking and Beavertown’s wonderful Gamma Ray walks away with this.
Worst Keg Beer: 18th Street Brewery Killewitte. Only drinkable after having your taste buds removed.
Best UK Bottle/Can: Gamma Ray was in with a shout here as was Neck Oil but this one goes to Fourpure Pale.
Best USA Draught: Founders All Day IPA is the perfect fallback. Even at £6 a pint.
Best USA Can/Bottle: Obviously Sixpoint and Lagunitas need a shout out here but Port Brewing Hop-15 is a beer guaranteed to put hairs on your chest.
Beer Festival of the Year: An easy one, this. It has to be The Independent Salford Beer Festival.
Best Blog or Whatever: I pay attention to only a small gene pool of gentlefolk who are all excellent wordsmiths. The rest of you need to pull your socks up.
Best Pub/Bar: The number crunching has a-grip of me so I have to give this to Pie & Ale for consistently delivering excellent beer in excellent condition. Simples.
Right that’s your lot. It’s my round and the lads won’t wait any longer. Here’s wising you a happy new year and in the words of Obi-Wan Kenobi: May the Force be with you.