This week the We Brought Beer team headed over to Olympia for the annual Great British Beer Festival (GBBF). Organised by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), the GBBF is a coming together of some of the best breweries in both the UK and abroad, a golden opportunity to try some new and exciting beers, some of which, in the case of the American bar, are rarely seen in this country. To put it another way, it’s basically a massive geek out. Despite the recent rise in the popularity of keg beer, cask conditioned beer still remains an integral part of British beer culture and it takes centre stage at GBBF, featuring not only familiar UK cask ales but also beers from America and Belgium in cask that are packaged in this form especially for this festival.

Below, the WBB team have highlighted their top picks of the festival, the beers that really made us go “wow”.

James
Marble (UK) Earl Grey IPA 6.2%
“We’ve had this one in the shop in bottle and on keg so was keen to try and contrast the cask version. I was not left disappointed. The bitterness was there but held it’s own even with less carbonation and the fruitiness of the hops really shone through. I’d say the tea flavours were much more muted on cask but all in all this was one of the beers I had all day.”
Rob
Marble (USA) Imperial Red Ale 9.0%
“Rich, malty and bombarded with hops! This is my perfect beer with an emphasis on the fruity bitter punch, a full body and a smooth finish.”
Ben
Titanic Plum Porter 4.9%
“Every so often there is a beer that smells so good you have to pass it around for everyone to have a whiff. Amazing aromas of sweet plum and a touch of roasted malts and chocolate come from this beer. Light bodied, with a light bitterness and a big, sweet plum flavour, this is surpassingly sessionable.”
Alex
Port City Colossal One aged in Cabernet Franc Barrels 10.0%
“A masterfully complex medium bodied imperial stout with notes of rich cocoa and fresh berry.”
Rob 2.0
Green Flash Soul Style 6.5%
“I think the big tropical flavours worked amazingly well on cask.”