Sunday, 15 April 2012

CAMRA presents award to Norfolk cider maker

Peter Blake, from Martham, near Gt. Yarmouth, will collect his award this weekend as winner in CAMRA's East Anglian Cider Competition 2011.

The presentation will take place The Kings Arms, Fleggburgh, where local band, The Vagaband, will also be playing.

The competition, which attracted a total of 23 cider entries, took place at Norwich Beer Festival in October last year.

The winning cider, Hog & Vine, from small cider maker Peter Blake, was described by judges as having "an aroma of a cornucopia of woodland fruits, a bit Christmas puddingesque. Flavoursome with lots of body, and a long lingering finish."

Some 10 years ago, Peter Blake and a group of friends thought it would be a good idea to make cider for personal consumption. Listening to the ‘buy and sell’ programme on Radio Norfolk one Saturday morning, they discovered some cider making equipment for sale, so duly purchased it. The name, Hog and Vine comes from the old pig shed covered in vines that has been converted into a cider making shed.

Peter Blake said "To say it was hard work is a massive understatement but we persevered and were pleasantly surprised with the results. Over the years we have progressed and modernised. I would like to thank all the people in the Martham area who kindly donate their apples, and to those who assist with the production."

Peter added, "I am amazed and very proud that ‘Hog & Vine Original’ came out top against so many other excellent ciders."

Chris Rouse, CAMRA’s Regional Cider Co-ordinator for East Anglia said, "I hope that this award will encourage those interested in making cider to start by using local apples that would otherwise go to waste"

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Branch 'Pub of the Year' results

The Norwich & Norfolk branch of CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale) have selected The Fat Cat pub (West End Street, Norwich) as their 2012 Pub of the Year. It is the third time that landlord Colin Keatley has been awarded the Norwich & Norfolk branch’s title.

The Fat Cat now goes into a head-to-head with the West Norfolk branch’s winner, The Union Jack at Roydon, with the victor progressing to the Regional level of the competition.

The Norwich & Norfolk Pub of the Year is chosen from the winners of the Branch’s Rural and City Pubs of the Year.

The 2012 Rural Pub of the Year was won by The Green Dragon in Wymondham, beating stiff competition from the Kings Arms, Reepham and the Windham Arms, Sheringham.

And the City Pub of the Year was won by The Fat Cat, from the other two Norwich pubs shortlisted – The King’s Head, Magdalen Street and The Duke of Wellington, Waterloo Road.

Also for the first time the Branch have awarded a Cider Pub of the Year due to the growing popularity of real ciders and perries and that many pubs are stocking a growing and permanent range.

The winner was The White Lion, Oak Street, Norwich which pipped the other shortlisted pubs - The Cottage on Silver Road, Norwich and The Oliver Twist in Great Yarmouth.

The winners will be presented with their awards at the respective pubs as below:

Tuesday April 24th, at 8pm
Presentation of Branch Pub of the Year and City Pub of the Year at the Fat Cat, West End St, Norwich

Tuesday June 12th, at 9pm
Presentation of Rural Pub of the Year at the Green Dragon, Church St, Wymondham (Bus 13B leaves Norwich Bus Stn at 19:10, and the 14B leaves Wymondham Cross at 22:37, arr Norwich 23:07)

Cider Pub of the Year at The White Lion, Oak Street, Norwich