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27th October 2021


2019 Brewer of the Year, Sophie de Ronde, with James Calder of sponsors SIBA
2019 Brewer of the Year, Sophie de Ronde, with James Calder of sponsors SIBA

We received a huge number of nominations for this year’s Brewer of the Year, all of which highlighted the great work of many across the industry. Many brewers were nominated more than once, and the reasons behind each nomination were both compelling and laudable. It was very hard to come up with a final shortlist.

To make it onto this shortlist is a massive achievement in itself. To do so, the brewer not only had to have brewed great beer, but also to have made a contribution over and above that, in terms of advancing the industry and the conversations that take place within it. This shortlist represents some of the very best in British brewing and is a reflection of the creativity and commitment that runs through many parts of the industry.

Some of the words provided in support of each nomination have been reproduced below. Please read each of them and then cast your vote on our online form for the candidate you think most deserves to become Brewer of the Year 2021, before Friday 29th October.

Note that only Guild members –  full, associate and corporate – are permitted to vote. However, corporate members may not vote for their own brewer, and are limited to one vote per company.  Votes received from non-members will not be counted. 

Emma Inch – Chair, British Guild of Beer Writers


Stacey Ayeh – Rock Leopard Brewery

“Stacey has dedicated a long and challenging stretch of years to gain entry into the brewing world. Yet in the short time his brewery Rock Leopard has been around he has created a much-needed and meaningful positive impact on the brewing sector. Opening up dialogue, conversations and actions pragmatically to enact constructive change within the beer world and wider society. Alongside brewing reliably fantastic West Coast IPAs.”


Charlotte Cook – Coalition Brewing

“A professional brewer of more than 10 years, having held posts at Cloudwater, Truman’s, BrewDog and Põhjala beer in Estonia, Cook has blazed a trail as one of the leading women brewers in British beer. In 2021, as well as further establishing herself as a role model for aspiring women looking to work in the industry, Cook made her mark by calling out alleged toxic and sexist workplace practices at one of her former employers. This sparked a surge of similar stories emerging and saw her appear on multiple podcasts and radio shows including BBC Woman’s Hour and The Food Programme. In a time when the craft beer industry is taking a long, hard look at its workplace practices as it seeks to mature in a way beneficial to its workers, Cook is spearheading this discussion.”


John Hatch – Ram Brewery

“[He] single handed, managed to keep up the continuation of brewing on Wandsworth’s Young’s Brewery site.”

“Everything he did to keep brewing alive at the country’s oldest continuous brewing site, cannot be recognised enough.”

John is now brewing at Sambrook’s Brewery:


Robin Head-Fourman – Beak Brewery

“With Robin at the helm, Beak Brewery have made a name for themselves in an incredibly competitive market with truly distinct, characterful, masterfully refined beers. His skill in creating beers with huge texture, flavour and aromatics whilst remaining drinkable and precise is testament to his skill as a brewer. The most exciting brewery to emerge in recent years and truly, uniquely distinct.”


Andy Parker – Elusive Brewing

“Andy has been working insanely hard over the last year creating a community at the brewery tap and online. He’s been on many video calls with homebrew groups etc (in his own time always happy to help people out with whatever they need), has done countless collaborations while leading the #BIPACOMEBACK revival. All while making some of the best beers in the country of a vast range of styles, recently winning gold at the World Beer Awards for Oregon Trail.”


Jeremy Swainson – Utopian Brewing

“This is a brewer whose dedication to double decoction mashing and lagering is producing an elegant and eloquent family of lager beers, including a core range of Czech and Bavarian-style beers, as well as a range of seasonals and specials that feature such treasures as a Dunkel, Vienna, Mai-bock and Rauch-bock. And all using English raw materials, which is a real measure of his success.”