Today is new years eve and it feels like it’s a good time to look back on the year that has gone by. I started writing on this blog on the 21st of February and I have written 215 posts including this one. I also resurrected my unused ratebeer account and ended up rating 474 beers. I also started to take a greater interest in home brewing and joined the brew club Källarknut in Örebro. I was part of brewing 6 different beers this year. I also tried numerous home brewed beers but I never really kept count. Probably somewhere around 150-200 due to visiting home brewers festivals.
Regarding festivals I managed to visit 5 this year. I missed Belgofesten due to disease, but visited Swedish Championship (home brewing), Enköpings Open (home brewing), SBWF, SMÖF and ÖBWF. Not sure which one was my favourite, they where all good in their own way. Probably SBWF due to its high amount of great quality beers. I hope to visit 6 festivals this year starting with Belgofesten.
Here is a list of “of the year” awards:
Suprise beer of the year – Harvietoun Ola Dubh
Comment: A beer that took me completely by surprise. I tried it at ÖBWF and I now have 3 bottles (12, 18 and 30 year) in my storage that I really look forward to trying.
Ale of the year – Pizza Port Hop 15
Comment: I got lots of alternatives here but I have to admit they are all DIPA:s. Had a really hard time choosing a favourite so I ended up choosing the one that I gave the highest score.
Porter\stout of the year – Struise Black Albert
Comment: Per bought and shared this bottle with me at Monk’s Café on Sveavägen. Fantastic beer that only gets beaten by Kaggen, but since I tried Kaggen over previous years I’m bypassing that beer.
Lager of the year- Mikkeller The American Dream
Comment: I could have gone with Harviestoun Schiehallion for this position, which was my nr 1 lager up until this beer. Not sure which one would win if I did a comparison test, there is almost 8 months in between the two beers.
Lambic/Gueze/fruit beers of the year – Liefmans Cuveé Brut
Comment: I haven’t tried that many beers in this category this year. This one was the only new beer that stood out.
Brewery of the year - Harviestoun.
Comment: I could have gone with Mikkeller (count as a brewery?) or Närke Kulturbryggeri. But I already knew what they could do and while they have done some very solid beers Harviestoun was a new brewery for me and they have kept showing great beers in my face.
Importer of the year - Brill & Co.
Comment: When I got to Brill’s at both SBWF and ÖBWF they kept serving fantastic beer after fantastic beer. They have also supplied Systembolaget with some superb beers this year. Good job!
Pub of the year - Monk’s Café
Comment: They have been struggling with some problems while starting up. But I love their enthusiasm and the fact that they make their own beer. They still have some problems with low supply and a very mixed quality of products. But Monk’s seems to be more about variety and I salute them for their effort. Hopefully they will keep on brewing. I should also mention Akkurrat and OT, I still consider Akkurat to be my nr. 1 pub, but Monk’s has gone a long way this year.
Worst beer of the year - Any beer from Latvia.
Comment: My father brought home a couple of bags of Latvian beers this summer. Very few of them got past 1/5.
Beer of the year - Struise Black Albert
Happy new year everybody!