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Pig's Ear Beer Festival 2008 (CAMRA Beer Festival)

Beer (sort)Average Score (sort)No. Samples (sort)
Stumpy's - Drunken DogExceptional1
BrewDog - Coffee StoutExcellent1
Bryson's Brews - Santa's Speedy StoutExcellent1
Yates' (Isle of Wight) (some beers brewed at Goddards) - Yule Be SorryExcellent1
Marble - PorterExcellent1
Acorn - 6th NoelGood1
Lymestone - Foundation StoneGood1
Mallinsons - MedusaGood1
Stringers - Genuine StunningGood1
Ossett - Treacle StoutGood1
Wentworth - Oatmeal StoutGood1
Three Castles - Knights PorterGood1
Downton - Honey PorterAcceptable1
Abbeydale - Smoked PorterAcceptable1
Foxfield - Breakfast MildAcceptable1
Crouch Vale - East West AleAcceptable1
Little Earth Project (formerly Mill Green) - Mawkin MildAcceptable1
Stringers - Golden AleAcceptable1
Birmingham - Pale AlePoor1
Adur - VelocityPoor1

Visits Details

05 Dec 2008 (Blair)
It was very busy inside with people sprawled out against every spare bit of wall space, including the stairs at the entrance. We were all a bit gutted when we got here really. All the beers we were looking forward to trying had gone, only a limited number of beers were left. Generally at a beer festival I've found there is a reason that the beers left at the end are the last ones left. We just had a few then randomly decided to go to the Man of Kent in Rochester.
Bryson's Brews - Santa's Speedy Stout5.00ExcellentRich and chocolatey with a lot of dried fruit. Very good beer actually.
Wentworth - Oatmeal Stout4.80GoodLots of coffee on this one, accompanied by some chocolate and roasted malt. Good stout.
Stringers - Genuine Stunning6.50GoodStrong, spicy ale. Easy to drink for it's strength.
02 Dec 2008 (Ian)
OK, so it's not the best venue in the world, in fact it was freezing, but the guys on our table were good fun and the foreign stand was great. The Mikkeller Its Alight in bottle was my favourite beer of the day.
Stumpy's - Drunken Dog7.60ExceptionalSecond place in South East barley wine category. Very dark ruby colour. Quite hoppy aroma. Really good. Hop and lovely choc. Doesnt drink its strength. Choc limes. Excellent juicy raisin. Surprisingly fantastic.
BrewDog - Coffee Stout9.00ExcellentEspresso coffee and hop aroma. For some unknown reason, a red chilli chinese meal springs to mind on the aroma. Big extreme beer, with ginger biscuit edges over dark choc and espresso smooth coffee, such a good beer. No alcohol heat evident. Really quite clean. The coffee is quite evident. Then the hop on the end is strong and spicy. Such a good beer.
Marble - Porter4.40ExcellentBlack, ruby edges, thin tan head. Rather a lovely beer, good choc, good depth of flavour, excellent mouthfeel. Some spice on aroma. Bit oily, but good espresso coffee bitter choc. Really bitter. Good beer. Grainy
Yates' (Isle of Wight) (some beers brewed at Goddards) - Yule Be Sorry7.20ExcellentWinner of the South East barley wine category. Black/dark ruby colour. OK dark fruit aroma. Oh dear, very alcoholic, doesn’t hide its strength at all. Drank this side by side with the Stumpys Drunken Dog and the Stumpys wins easily. Some choc. Shares a lot of characteristics with the Stumpys except the drinkability. Not exactly a barley wine, more of an English strong ale. Still its quite good. Dried fruit flavours, some hop sting.
Acorn - 6th Noel5.30GoodDark ruby colour with lasting beige head. Bit of farty yeast on aroma. Drinkable strong dark ale. Not quite as good as some of the previous years. Liquorice on aroma, not great condition. Bit restrained. Decent.
Mallinsons - Medusa4.30GoodGold, bubbly off white head. Bit meaty, some yeast and hop on aroma. Citrusy bitter. Its a pretty decent bitter, good condition, good citrusy hops on the end. Nice drinkable bitter. White pepper hop and decent lime on finish
Three Castles - Knights Porter4.60GoodBlack with a thin tan head. Some choc, bit of coffee. Its alright. Good depth of flavour, some grainyness. Its alright. Some decent choc.
Lymestone - Foundation Stone4.50GoodGold colour with slight haze, no head. Slightly yeasty. Its ok, a bit run of the mill bitter. Decent flavours. Good lime citrus finish.
Ossett - Treacle Stout5.00GoodBlack colour with no real head. OK thickish stout. Its quite tasty, good Ossett beer, nice oilyness. Good depth of flavour, nice grain
Crouch Vale - East West Ale4.30AcceptableGold, thin off white head. American citrusy hop aroma. Yeah its ok. Typical Crouch Vale beer. Some pink grapefruit. Some dryness on finish. Fine.
Little Earth Project (formerly Mill Green) - Mawkin Mild2.90AcceptableBlack, no real head. Roasted malt choc aroma. Bit watery in mouth. Quite bitter choc on finish. Fair amount of bitter dark choc flavour for a 2.9% beer. Lacks a little condition. But its ok. Some smoked charcoal
Downton - Honey Porter4.40AcceptableVery dark ruby colour, lasting off white head. Good condition. Little bit of honey. Decent beer, not too choccy, not too honeyish, but a little sweetness
Foxfield - Breakfast Mild3.40AcceptableDark ruby colour. Inoffensive mild. Nicely drinkable beer, a little grainy. OK mild, little bit light on the roast and flavours. OK dark mild.
Stringers - Golden Ale3.70AcceptablePale gold, thin lasting white head. Yeasty bready floral hop aroma. A floral hop blond beer, bit odd as most go for a citrusy hit on this style. This is different and quite interesting because of that. Bit yeasty. Fine.
Abbeydale - Smoked Porter4.40AcceptableDeep ruby colour. Yeah its got some smoked notes. Its ok, nothing too exciting. No real condition, some smokey choc.
Birmingham - Pale Ale4.00PoorGold thin white head. Yeasty a little green appley. Just not very good really. Ugh. Just a bit ugly
Adur - Velocity4.20PoorAttractive chestnut colour with thin bubbly beige head. Some diacetyl, some butter, some nuttiness. Just pretty awful. Ugh.

About the Pig's Ear Beer Festival 2008

Summary of Beer Scores


The pub is found in Hackney, Greater London, E8 1HE.

Held for the third year running at The Ocean venue, Mare Street, opposite Hackney Town Hall. The emphasis seemed to be on stouts and strong ales. Good selection of food stalls, plus a cider section and a foreign beers section. Very little seating.

We have visited this pub twice, seen 20 different beers and tried them all.

Map location

Postcode: E8 1HE