Calling Home Brewers

2023 Competition Launched

Stockport & South Manchester Branch of CAMRA is again running a competition for local home brewers, to find five beers for Bar Nouveau at next year's Stockport Beer & Cider Festival.

Bar Nouveau Judging in progress was introduced in 2015 and features brand new beers launched at the festival. It's proved to be a very successful feature and we will be running it again next year (the festival dates are 22-24 June). There will be up to ten beers, all served on a separate bar and properly cooled to ensure optimum condition.

For the past few years we have involved local home brewers and have been delighted by the response. As in past years, each of the five winners will have their beer brewed by a different local, professional brewery. The festival will purchase three firkins of each winning beer and the rest will be sold on to the market by the brewers concerned. If you are a home brewer this is a great chance to join in a brew day at a local brewery and also see one of your beers out there on sale to the public.

The brewers who have kindly agreed to host the winners are:

Many thanks to these brewers for supporting the competition.

Now - the beers

The five categories are quite broadly drawn so that you can use your imagination. Here's what we are looking for:

Mild & Brown Ale
This is a chance to take old beer styles and run with them. Maximum ABV 5.5%.

Bitter, Pale Ale & Session IPA
Session ales, pale ales, brown, amber or blonde - the choice is yours. Maximum ABV 5.0%

Strong Pale Ale, ESB & IPA
While we're not style fanatics you should aim for a minimum ABV of 5%. Apart from that it's up to you - brown, red, black or white IPAs are all welcome. Maximum ABV 6.5%

Stout & Porter
Again this is broadly drawn - added flavours and ingredients optional. Maximum ABV 6%

This is where you can really go to town. Saisons, bocks, rauch biers - all are welcome. Note - all beers with lactose will fall in this category. Maximum ABV 7.0%

A few things to bear in mind:

First - Some of the bottles being judged Although the beers will be judged from bottle, they will have to work as cask beers.

Second - In previous years we have asked people to think about the hops and while that's not really an issue now, please do consider commerciality. We will be buying some of each brew for the festival but the host brewers will have to sell the rest into the trade so the beers will have to be commercially viable for them.

Third - Please also note that we will be looking to ensure the entries observe the ABV limits for each category - a tiny amount of drift is OK but not huge overshoots.

Finally - The time lapse between the brewing of the beer and its need to be on sale at the Stockport Beer & Cider Festival is around 6 weeks, so inclusion of a maturation period of say 6 months is not possible.

How to enter

Just email your name, contact details and which categories you want to enter to:

The cut-off date for entering is 15 January 2023 (but we won't need final details of actual beers until early February).

Judging will take place in late March to early April 2023 (dates to be anounced). Final arrangements for delivering your beer will be communicated to you nearer the time.