SIBA is the Society of Independent Brewers, kind of the equivalent to the Brewers’ Association in the US, and it’s doing a grand job of fuelling the growth of great quality beer from small producers in the UK. It is a beer trade body, and as such it has its political struggles, battles with other bodies, internal strife and all the rest of the issues that plague every trade body in beer. But SIBA events are fun. And the people who organise and run them are decent, talented people who you enjoy having a pint with. I wrote here about the time I had at the conference last year, so it was a pleasure to go back with the film crew this year.
So what happens in this episode? It’s twelve minutes long, so let me guide you through it.
First, Peter Amor talks to SIBA head Julian Grocock about the society, what its stands for and what it does to help promote beer. SIBA organises a year-long brewing competition, where beers judged at regional heats go through to a national final, with the winners announced at the conference. I then sneak into the bar while the conference is going on in the next room, and help myself to a sneak preview and tasting of all the category winners (or rather, all bar one in the final edit – not everyone likes the fact that SIBA judged a national keg beer competition this year). This gets interspersed with interviews with some of the young, new cask ale brewers who were at the conference this year, where we seek to uncover the motivations behind a new generation entering the brewing industry. This concludes with an interview with the brewer who created this year’s grand champion. Which of the beers was it? Well, if you’re eagle-eyed during the tasting segment, you’ll spot it well before I did…
These video blogs now have their own home on the web too. Go to http://www.britishbeervideoblog.blogspot.com/ if you want to see them all together, and there’ll also be the odd extra bonus clip knocking around there too. You can also find the embed code there now that allows you to feature them on your own site of you wish.
Finally, can I ask for some feedback? This year of video blogs represents a significant financial investment, which aims to help spread beer appreciation beyond the usual community of beer aficionados and hopes to reach a wider audience. If you’ve been following them for the last six months you’ll see that we’ve tried different formats and ideas, and also that we’re steadily learning our craft as presenters (the filmmakers already knew what they were doing). We want to make them as good as we can. Any constructive comments would be very gratefully received!