Deva Tap was packed with more than 100 beer lovers, brewers, bartenders and punters to celebrate the third annual Chester Beer Awards.
The ceremony was once again opened by Chester MP Chris Matheson who started by asking all those present how Dry January was going.
Mr Matheson went on to congratulate all the nominees for being voted the best our city had to offer and thanked everyone for coming to celebrate the diverse and thriving beer scene in Chester.
The awards themselves were presented by the judges who had the difficult task of choosing a winner from a list of formidable nominees.
“This year the nominations were more diverse than the years before,” said Katja Knox, from Chester Beer Blog, the organisers of the event.
“We’ve had some great pubs open and new breweries have started coming forward too. 2017 was an exciting year for local beer and I believe this is reflected in the nominations, too.”
The Best Pub award was, for the third time, won by The Cellar, Chester, and accepted on their behalf by Andrew Atkinson, who runs the pub. He said the team was ‘chuffed’ to win the coveted award again.
The Best Pub Grub award was won by Artichoke bistro and for the third year running Chester Beer and Wine claimed the Best Beer Shop award.
Best Local Brewery award was handed over to Runcorn based Chapter Brewing, who have recently won the Best New Brewery for Cheshire award from beer rating site RateBeer as well.
Newly rebranded and re-established brewery LOKA POLLY won Best Local Beer with their Galaxy and Mosaic IPA.
The brewers said they were ‘incredibly grateful to everyone who was involved at Chester Beer Awards’ and thanked the organisers and judges by declaring that the ‘Chester beer scene is so lucky to have you’.
The much coveted Best Bartender award was scooped by Sophie Hooper at The Cellar, Chester due to her unbeatable beer knowledge and for never failing to recommend a suitable beer, no matter how obscure the taste of the customer.
The Rising Star award was previously called Best Newcomer/Pub that has upped their game and was aimed at either a new kid on the block, or a pub which has significantly ‘raised the bar’ of late and by doing so thoroughly impressed their punters. This year it was won by The Cornerhouse.
And finally, the Judges Choice award for Outstanding Achievement was, very aptly, handed over to Bartend Against Bombs, who have to date gathered closer to £37K for War Child Charity.
The award is handed to a person or entity who by their actions have contributed to the local beer scene or when one from that scene has done something outstanding. Ben Iles accepted the award to roaring applause.
“We’d like to thank Deva Tap for hosting the event, everyone who nominated their favourites and of course, everyone who came to celebrate the winners, said Katja Knox.
“Every year we’re blown away by the support we receive from the nominees and the public and that just speaks volumes of what an amazing bunch of people we have in our bars and breweries in Chester.”