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Nottingham Beer Festival 2007 (CAMRA Beer Festival)

Beer (sort)Average Score (sort)No. Samples (sort)
Oakham - JHBExceptional1
Coastal - ErosionExcellent1
Whim - Flower PowerExcellent1
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - Imperial IPAExcellent1
Highgate - Old AleExcellent1
Great Oakley - Welland Valley MildExcellent1
Fernandes - Pickled PeckerExcellent1
Spectrum - Black Buffle StoutExcellent1
Castle Rock - Preservation Fine AleGood1
BrewDog - BuzzGood1
Brewster's - Belle du JourGood1
Tunnel - Boston Beer PartyGood1
Whim - Hartington BitterGood1
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - AllianceGood1
Holden's - OctaviaGood1
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - King BeeGood1
Downton - Logan's BerryGood1
Arundel - Black BeastieGood1
St Austell - Black PrinceGood1
Matthew's - Honey MineAcceptable1
Elmtree - Dark Horse StoutAcceptable1
Nottingham - Sooty Oatmeal StoutAcceptable1
Arbor Ales - Old KnobbleyAcceptable1
Whim - Hartington IPAAcceptable1
Milton - DreihopfenbockbrauAcceptable1
Hydes - 1863 Classic BitterAcceptable1
Coastal - Pirate ShipAcceptable1
Mauldons - OctoberfestAcceptable1
Downton - German Pale AleAcceptable1
Rooster's - Right of LeffeAcceptable1
Nottingham - Jo & Twiggy'sAcceptable1
Grafton - Dark LadyAcceptable1
Alcazar - Jack O'Lantern 3Acceptable1
Tring - Mansion DarkAcceptable1
Castle Rock - White AdmiralAcceptable1
Elmtree - BitterAcceptable1
Atlas Mill - IPAAcceptable1
Globe - PorterAcceptable1
Funfair - Showman's StoutAcceptable1
Magpie - Thieving RogueAcceptable1
Bottle Brook - Meandering MildAcceptable1
Dent - RambrauPoor1
Riverhead - Premium MildPoor1
Discovery Ales (Hawkhill) - EurekaPoor1

Visits Details

20 Oct 2007 (Ian)
Saturday has an early start. Advertised as 10.00, but actually opened around 10.25. Back here with Martin and Simon and then Mes and Sim turned up with Angelo from Ratebeer. I spent the first hour doing Su Doku in The Times and drinking slowly. Excellent day and a good finish to a fine festival.
Oakham - JHB3.80ExceptionalBeer of the festival, such great condition as it only came on during the Saturday. So much great mouthfeel, citrusy tangerine/grapefruit. Perfect.
Fernandes - Pickled Pecker5.50ExcellentBlack with lasting beige head. Creamy vanilla, very drinkable, doesn’t taste of 5.5% Nice choc. Good. Just very good.
Arundel - Black Beastie4.90GoodVery dark brown, thick lasting head. Good mix of malt, milk choc and hop. Toasty without being over the top. Very drinkable, good smooth, but toasty mouthfeel. Nice strong dark beer.
St Austell - Black Prince4.00GoodBlack with dark brown edges. Lasting beige head. Easy drinking dark beer with some roastiness. Decent simple, but very drinkable.
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - King Bee7.00GoodVery dark brown, thin tan head. Smells of putty. Intense coffee malt, roasty and toasty. Not sure where the honey is, but definitely intense. Putty and coffee aroma. Good aftertaste of smooth mocha coffee. Putty runs through it. Not sure it entirely works. More honeycomb than honey, a nod towards a Crunchie but covered in thick intense coffee flavoured dark choc. Putty fades a little as it goes down. Definitely distinct.
Downton - Logan's Berry4.40GoodOrangey vermillion colour with lasting beige head. Very berry. Lots of raspberry and blackberry, really lovely fruit. Proper fruit added to this. Not sour, but the fruit certainly has a kick. Base beer is good too.
Holden's - Octavia4.30GoodGold with lasting bubbly off white head. Yeasty aroma, some hop. Good condition, a bit like Harvey’s Sussex Best Bitter. Good character. Very good straight yeasty bitter.
Castle Rock - Preservation Fine Ale4.40GoodCopper/orange, thick creamy head. Fruity, clean tasting bitter. Too tight a sparkler, good hop on end. Creamy, tasty and berry fruity.
Tring - Mansion Dark3.70AcceptableDeep brown with lasting beige. Very good mild, slight caramel, good condition. Lots of caramel, faint roasted malts. Good for the style.
Downton - German Pale Ale4.20AcceptableGold, very carbonated, definitely lagery, some tangeriney hop on aroma. Actually it’s very good. First beer on Saturday at 10.25, very light and drinkable.
Arbor Ales - Old Knobbley4.50AcceptableRuby/brown with beige head. Little bit of mintyness on slightly watery, slightly grainy beer. Fine, just a bit watery.
Coastal - Pirate Ship4.80AcceptableGold with thin beige head. Rubbery. Which is a shame at the hop is good. But rest of it is a drinkable orangey, citrusy bitter.
Elmtree - Bitter4.20AcceptableCopper with bubbly beige head. It’s a slightly fruity bitter. Decent raspberry/strawberry, some yeast. It’s a bitter.
Magpie - Thieving Rogue4.50AcceptableHazy gold, with thin white head. Yeasty bitter, it’s a bitter, it’s yeasty. Some hop.
Hydes - 1863 Classic Bitter3.50AcceptableCopper, thin lasting bubbly beige head. Slightly yeasty, decent light bitter, in good condition, fine, interesting for a light bitter.
Nottingham - Jo & Twiggy's4.10AcceptableGold with lasting bubbly white head. Some citrus, hop aroma. Some grassy hop throughout. Nettley. It’s a golden bitter with some butter.
Dent - Rambrau4.20PoorGold, thin white head. Bit of cardboard, bit of herby hop. Cask conditioned lager. Fairly bland, some lager hop flavour on end. Inoffensive.
19 Oct 2007 (Ian)
Day 2. We got a few seats at a table. Martin, me and Simon again with a couple of old boys from a pub in Derby that Simon brought along. Martin and I had bought a take out picnic from the Italian deli, Gusto, down the road and enjoyed it a lot.
Highgate - Old Ale5.30ExcellentBlack with thin dark beige. Wow. Now that is interesting. Sour, but not off, some dark fruit, damson, plum. Very interesting. Unusual flavours and a very good beer.
Spectrum - Black Buffle Stout4.50ExcellentBlack, tan head. Good condition. Good dark malts, intense roasted malts. Choc aroma, bit like a porter really, full and deep in mouth. Excellent burnt malt finish. Very good choc and malts.
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - Imperial IPA7.80ExcellentAmber, slight haze. No head. Very herbaceous aroma, OK condition, lots of orange crystallized fruits. Very enjoyably though. Very nice jellied fruit. The herby, nettle hop is great. Not too syrupy.
Great Oakley - Welland Valley Mild3.60ExcellentVery dark brown with thin beige head. Decent bitter choc, roasted malts. Nice creamy chocolate, really good mild, choccy grainyness is superb, lots of flavour.
Tunnel - Boston Beer Party5.60GoodOrange/gold with disappearing head. American piney grapefruit hop aroma. Some syrupy malt. Tangerine/clementine fruit. Good condition. Gets better as it goes down. US hops are reasonably understated. Piney throughout.
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - Alliance10.30GoodHazy amber/copper with no head. Last half out of the barrel. No off/bad flavours. Barley wine aroma, plus good lime. God that’s strong. Lime and grapefruit, syrupy malt, but the alcohol is very heavy. Tangerine jelly. Stronger version of the IIPA. Strong and fortifying.
Whim - Hartington IPA4.50AcceptableGold with thin off white head. Decent condition. Slightly citrusy bitter. Goodish orangey fruits, good sting on the tip of the tongue. Decent bitter, a little bit dusty and cardboardy. Fruits and finish are good.
Mauldons - Octoberfest5.00AcceptableGold/copper with no head. A bitter/marzen mix. Sweetish, drinkable. Has a lagerish tinge. Some hop. Fine.
Grafton - Dark Lady4.00AcceptableBlack, dark brown edges, no head. Slightly sour, roasted malt aroma. No great condition. Thickish mouthfeel. Nice enough, dark malts, but very dull condition.
Nottingham - Sooty Oatmeal Stout4.80AcceptableBlack beer with brown edges. Stouty/cereal aroma. Bit of charcoal on aroma. Decent stout. Bit too charcoaly sooty for me. Nice roasted kick on finish.
Castle Rock - White Admiral5.60AcceptableGold, lasting white head. Too tight a sparkler. Pretty good sherberty hop. Strong pale ale, plenty of flavour. Little bit of toffee on aroma. Little bit of stale pale malt.
Funfair - Showman's Stout5.00AcceptableBlack with dark brown edges, dark beige head. Bit of diacetyl I think, bit of cream/butter, some liquorice. Bit of vanilla.
Elmtree - Dark Horse Stout5.00AcceptableBlack beer, thin beige, dry stout. Nothing outstanding, but nothing out of place. Fine.
Riverhead - Premium Mild4.80PoorFull of diacetyl. Too buttery. Odd minty flavour to it too. A buttery/minty strong mild. Hmmm, let me think about this. Not much of the malt comes through. Some choc.
18 Oct 2007 (Ian)
Here with Martin and Simon and Neil from Ratebeer. Not really enough seating, but we had a space on the stage. Got here about 2.15 and left 5 and a bit hours later to have our meal in the Hilton where we stayed.
Coastal - Erosion7.50ExcellentHeavy, thick dark beer, stilton flavours. Thick. Good thick malty strong ale. Some nuttiness. Very impressive. Good balance. Alcohol doesn’t destroy it. Very drinkable actually. Good, good malts.
Whim - Flower Power5.30ExcellentGold clear beer. Glorious grapefruit aroma. Good carbonation. Extraordinary hop. Very intense lychees. Very drinkable. Good balance yet still intense hop. Sherbert. Well done, though.
Whim - Hartington Bitter4.00GoodGold colour with sweaty sox hop. Very good bitter. A bit of tea maybe. Nice, drinkable.
BrewDog - Buzz4.50GoodCopper colour with thin bubbly off white head. Bit of tea and rubber on the aroma. OK in mouth and then this coppery almost metallic aggressive hop kicks in. Wakes your taste buds up. Bit too much maybe.
Brewster's - Belle du Jour4.80GoodAmber colour with lasting off white head. Very fruity beer, must be the most fruity non fruit beer I’ve had. Peach and apricot. Good hop on end. Lovely fruit, in good condition and just as lovely as the call girl that the beer is named after.
Alcazar - Jack O'Lantern 34.80AcceptableBlack with tan head, smells like cheap supermarket vanilla ice cream with chocolate ripple in it. Dullish, but the finish grows on you. Good vanilla essence.
Atlas Mill - IPA5.00AcceptableCopper with disappearing head. Syrupy, rubbery malt aroma, some hop on end. Pretty disappointing, too rubbery. Some tangerine fruit as the half pint when down.
Bottle Brook - Meandering Mild4.10AcceptableVery dark brown. Decent mild. Very mild in fact. Nice malts, a little thin as you would expect. Good condition. Pretty good for the style. Bit of stilton cheese flavour.
Globe - Porter3.90AcceptableVery very dark brown colour with disappearing beige head. Good choc, some strong espresso coffee. Nice severe cocoa flavour. Choccy, good in mouth, bit of sour/bleach. No huge fruit. Fine.
Matthew's - Honey Mine4.70AcceptableLovely chestnut colour, lasting bubbly beige head. Looks in good condition. Toffee and earthy hop aroma. Honey in mouth and firey nettley finish. A little bit of a nod to the bock style. Odd honey. Reasonably clean. Just lots of depth of flavour. Fine, if odd.
Milton - Dreihopfenbockbrau5.40AcceptableOrangey amber colour with thin beige head. Toffeeish aroma. Decent carbonation, very toffee in mouth. Smooth. Amazingly sweet toffee smoothness. Nice though.
Rooster's - Right of Leffe5.20AcceptablePale gold colour with thin whtie head. Astringent hoppy aroma. It’s a blond, astringent hoppy, typical Roosters beer. Doesn’t taste of 5.2%. Feathery hop. Nothing to do with Leffe mind.
Discovery Ales (Hawkhill) - Eureka3.90PoorDeep copper colour with disappearing bubbly beige head. Farty yeasty aroma. Sickly, syrupy malt in mouth. This new brewery needs to pick up its standards on this sample. Yeasty, walnuty bitter.

About the Nottingham Beer Festival 2007

Summary of Beer Scores



The pub is found in Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG1 1DB.

Held at the regular venue of the Victoria Centre, this is one of the highlights of the annual beer festival calendar. One of the best ranges of UK micro cask conditioned beer in the country. 280 beers available from Thursday with another 100 different beers added on Saturday, meaning that there is always fresh beer to try.

We have visited this pub 3 times, seen 44 different beers and tried them all.

Map location

Postcode: NG1 1DB