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SIBA Hop Farm Beer Festival 2008 (Beer Festival)

Beer (sort)Average Score (sort)No. Samples (sort)
Oakleaf (now see Fallen Acorn entries) - Hole HeartedExceptional1
Hogs Back - OTT Old Tongham TastyExcellent1
Hampshire - Penny Black PorterExcellent1
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Exodus StoutExcellent2
Oakleaf (now see Fallen Acorn entries) - Maypole MildExcellent1
Twickenham (also uses sub-brand Old Hands) - Daisy CutterExcellent1
Langham - Hip HopGood1
Westerham - Special Bitter Ale "1965"Good1
Bowman - Quiver BitterGood1
Arundel - Sussex MildGood1
Ascot - 5/4 Favourite (formerly Alligator Ale)Good1
West Berkshire - Full CircleGood1
Pilgrim - Smoked Burton AleAcceptable2
Westerham - Up The KriekAcceptable1
Westerham - Audit AleAcceptable1
Picture 1. SIBA Hop Farm Beer Festival 2008, Paddock Wood, Kent

Visits Details

30 Aug 2008 (Ian)
At some point I will meet up with Blair when we are at a beer festival together!! This was a revelation. 10 mins cycle ride from Paddock Wood (although there was a free bus shuttle on too), into the hop farm, into the marquee and there were over a 100 beers on from breweries in the South East affiliated to SIBA. Almost all were in spanking nick, with a couple of fantastic beers. Morris men, folk singers, hot air balloons, hops, it was a great day out. Will definitely be back next year.
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Exodus Stout6.20ExceptionalAs so often, my first beer of a festival also turns out to be my beer of the festival. Black, thin beige head. Now that is a lovely beer. Rich roasted and velvety smooth malts. Bit of dry charcoal on finish. It's outstanding. Beautifully balanced, really well made, the roasted malt, choc, espresso coffee flavours are outstanding. It's so good, after drinking loads of dull Belgian bottle stuff in the preceding weeks, this was just so refreshing.
Oakleaf (now see Fallen Acorn entries) - Maypole Mild3.80ExcellentVery very dark brown. Thin beige head. Lovely toasty aroma. Excellent dark mild, hint of dark fruits. Some roasted malts, lots of choc, some coffee. Very full in mouth. Enormously pleasing on the swallow. Excellent dark mild. Even a bit of tar.
Pilgrim - Smoked Burton Ale3.70AcceptableHazy copper, thin beige head. Definitely a smokey aroma. Then it's a slightly citrusy bitter in the mouth, some tangerine and then more smoke and very dry on the finish. Smoked tangerine? odd, but true. Does it work? Honestyly? Yeah, a bit.
Westerham - Up The Kriek3.80AcceptableClear orange, a bit like a toned down Irn Bru colour with a thin pinky white head. Some faint cherry on aroma. Some faint cherry on end. The rest is a bitter. Not sure the sweet sour of the cherry and the bitter all mix very well. A rather bizarre cherry ber, which I'm not sure works. the cherry softens a little. Fine. Very dry finish.
Westerham - Audit Ale6.20AcceptableBrewed to an old recipe found somewhere by the brewery. Very deep red, thin beige head. Syrupy malty ESB style beer. Could be in better condition. Some deep strawberry jam fruit. Just needs ab it of conditon to be a bit less obviously syrupy. Very dry on finish.
29 Aug 2008 (Blair)
I love this beer festival. It wasn't all that busy today, but then it hadn't really been advertised all that well. They had a big variety of games like giant jenga, giant connect 4 and more. Had my share of beer then staggered to my tent and slept it off.
Oakleaf (now see Fallen Acorn entries) - Hole Hearted4.70ExceptionalWow, why have I never tried this before? Beautiful, light and hoppy ale. Very fruity and well just lovely really.
Hogs Back - OTT Old Tongham Tasty6.00ExcellentI love this beer. Lots of chocolate and that distinctive sour taste you expect in an old ale.
Hampshire - Penny Black Porter4.50ExcellentVery rich porter with lots of chocolate and also a little espresso going on. I liked this a lot.
Twickenham (also uses sub-brand Old Hands) - Daisy Cutter6.10ExcellentStunning strong pale ale. Incredibly hoppy with a nice citrus and fruit flavour. I would have loved to drink more but it's a strong one.
Westerham - Special Bitter Ale "1965"5.00GoodLots of hops, full bodied ale with loads going on.
Arundel - Sussex Mild3.70GoodQuite thin in the mouth and also quite light in colour for a mild. Still very nice though. Sweet and creamy with a little chocolate.
West Berkshire - Full Circle4.50GoodVery nice. Nice hoppy ale. Little bit of malt and fruit. Yeah nice one.
Bowman - Quiver Bitter4.50GoodI was more than a little drunk at this point, but I do remember this being a very tasty bitter.
Ascot - 5/4 Favourite (formerly Alligator Ale)4.60GoodThis was good. Very refreshing, citrussy with a lot of fruit. Almost a little cloying but not quite. Very nice beer.
Langham - Hip Hop4.00GoodReally tasty blonde beer. Nice floral aroma and the taste is crisp, hoppy with a bit of malt.
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Exodus Stout6.20GoodI'll be honest, I was expecting a little more from this. I had been eagerly waiting for this for the best part of a year. It was still a very nice stout. Rich with lots of chocolate and roasted malt, also exceptionally smooth for it's strength.
Pilgrim - Smoked Burton Ale3.70AcceptableThis ale was definitely different, but it didn't really work for me. Standard bitter with a little background smokiness. A valiant attempt.

About the SIBA Hop Farm Beer Festival 2008

The pub sign. SIBA Hop Farm Beer Festival 2008, Paddock Wood, Kent

Summary of Beer Scores


The Beer Festival is found in Paddock Wood, Kent, TN12 6PY.

Great beer festival now in it's 2nd year. Held in the beautiful surroundings of the Hop Farm. Over 120 diffrent ales and lagers, plus hot-air balloon trips, not your usual beer festival fare.

We have visited this Beer Festival twice, seen 15 different beers and tried them all.

Map location

Postcode: TN12 6PY