Alburgh’s Grain Brewery wins Gold for golden brew

Grain Brewery in Alburgh won the Champion Speciality Beer Award for its Blonde Ash brew at the National Beer Awards 2016. 

Pictured: Phil and Hilary Halls ANL-160323-154216009
Grain Brewery in Alburgh won the Champion Speciality Beer Award for its Blonde Ash brew at the National Beer Awards 2016. Pictured: Phil and Hilary Halls ANL-160323-154216009

A south Norfolk beermaker says their recent success at this year’s National Beer Awards is ‘quite a landmark’ for its history, as it celebrates a decade in business.

Grain Brewery, which is based in South Farm, Alburgh, near to Harleston, claimed the Gold in the Champion Speciality Beers category, for its wheat cask beer Blonde Ash – a result which brewery co-owner Phil Halls described as being ‘unexpected’.

I’m absolutely chuffed to bits. We are really pleased

Phil Halls

“I’m absolutely chuffed to bits. We are really pleased,” Mr Halls told the Diss Express.

“Blonde Ash is a brew we have been brewing for some time. It was up against a number of beers. This category was really a catch-all for brews that didn’t really fit anywhere else.

“I have always been fond of wheat beers. We gave it a real European flavour, and the judges obviously agreed with my taste buds!”

Two of the beermaker’s other products – the IPA and Redwood – also reached the finals of the 2016 event, hosted by The Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA).

Grain Brewery was one of eight in the Eastern region to win awards at national level.

A statement from SIBA read: “I would like to congratulate the breweries from the East region that have won, and hope as many people as possible from the region will seek out these fantastic beers.

“SIBA believe that good beer comes in a variety of formats and it is fantastic to see that the region have taken home silverware.”

This follows Grain Brewery’s success in the 2015 awards, when its IPA was named SIBA’s Overall Champion in the East of England.

The brewery, now in its tenth year, is also known for running four pubs in Norfolk and Suffolk, including the Diss Corn Hall bar, which Mr Halls said is being completely refurbished along with the rest of the Corn Hall interior, as part of the town’s ongoing Heritage Triangle regeneration project.

Mr Halls, who manages the brewery alongside Geoff Wright, added that their plan for the future was to have a total of five bars under its wing.

In addition, he said they would try brewing new types of beers different to those it currently produces, and said their recent experiments with making lager had been going ‘brilliantly well’.

“We have had a slow and steady upward rise,” he said.

“Every single year has been better than the year before.

For further information about Grain Brewery, please call 01986 788884 or visit www.grainbrewery.co.uk