Black Magic!


Oakham Lead Brewer Ed Sharman is a great lover of dark beers, Hawse Buckler being a personal favourite, so winning this category was particularly special.

“We’re legendary for our pale ales,” Ed said. “and I wanted to show that we can make fantastic beers in a range of styles. So I’m glad that my journey to the dark side hit the spot for the SIBA judges!”

Originally intended to be Oakham’s 4.5% ABV seasonal offering for October 2020, the pandemic meant that Black Magic was adapted into a 5% cask aged beer with unfiltered cans and kegs also produced.

Well received back in late 2020 despite the lockdowns, Ed brought Black Magic back this year as a cask aged beer with a revised recipe to emphasise the chocolate notes. He removed the lactose, changed the type of chocolate used and tweaked the malt and hop line-up to bring the recipe into balance.

Black Magic is aged in the cask for at least 3 months to allow the flavours to develop and to give a smooth mouthfeel.

Flavoured with Cocoa and hopped with Centennial, Citra, Chinook and Amarillo on top of a complex base of no less than 8 different malts.

A sumptuous cask aged chocolate porter, robust and rich, dark and decadent and supernaturally smooth.

Click here for more info.

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Farewell John Bryan

Friday 27th May saw the retirement of our legendary Brewing Director John Bryan after 27 years at Oakham Ales.

A hugely influential figure in UK brewing, John was the first UK brewer to travel to the USA to select hops direct from the growers, most famously in 2009 discovering a remarkable new hop variety – Citra!

John’s brewing intuition and knowledge have been inestimably important to Oakham’s development but he leaves the brewery in the very safe hands of newly appointed Head Brewer Mark Tetlow, Lead Brewer Ed Sharman, Quality Brewer Stewart Poulter and the rest of the brewing team.

And John won’t be stepping away completely – he remains a partner in the business and intends to continue with those annual hop sourcing visits to the USA for at least the next couple of harvests.

How did John sign off?

Well suitably enough for a man who has spent so much time flying in the face of brewing tradition, John took to the skies in a Spitfire recently and could be seen looping the loop above Cambridgeshire.

And of course completing a perfect barrel roll!

Click HERE for more about John’s USA Hop Adventures.

And HERE for a video of John Hop Diving.

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Kaizen Wins at Rail Ale!

Named after the Japanese term meaning “change for the better” or “continuous improvement.”

Kaizen features 4 great New World hop varieties on a complex base of 5 different malts.

Naturally slightly hazy.

Cask Aged Kaizen is now sold out but the beer is still available in Unfiltered Cans and Kegs.

Click here for more info on Kaizen Keg.

Click here for more info on Kaizen Cans.

Click here for more info on Kaizen Cask Aged.

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Brewery of the Year 2020!

We’re proud to have been named “Brewery of the Year” in the Good Pub Guide.

A fantastic award from one of the best-respected publications in the industry and reward for the hard work of the Oakham team and our commitment to brewing great beers for our customers.

The 2020 edition of the prestigious Guide was published today and Fiona Stapley, Editor of Good Pub Guide, told us “Your prices are fair, your award-winning beers are excellent as well as interesting and you are constantly coming up with new ideas and branching out to reach new areas rather than just sticking to what you know. Your innovation and enthusiasm for the company really stands out. So we feel this is a well deserved accolade.”.

This is proving to be a very special year, with brewery expansion plans well underway and now another major accolade to follow on from our best selling Oakham Citra being awarded “Champion Golden Beer of Britain” and Bronze in the overall “Supreme Champion Beer” competition at this year’s Great British Beer Festival.

This isn’t the first time that we’ve appeared in the Good Pub Guide. In fact, over the last two decades, we’ve won their “Own Brew Pub of the Year” award three times for the Brewery Tap in Peterborough.

Fiona Stapley explained the process behind the award: “We have thousands of readers on our database who send us regular reports and letters and thoughts about pubs and beers in general, as well as specific details on pubs they visit. I always keep a careful check on reports over the year to see what highlights stand out and Oakham Ales have come in for particular praise – for your regular beers as well as your seasonal ones. And they love the Brewery Tap in Peterborough of course.”

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Citra – Our Champion!

Oakham Citra was crowned “Champion Golden Beer of Great Britain 2019” at the Great British Beer Festival in London – the second time in six years that Citra has won that title and yet another major award for this hugely refreshing beer. Citra also received Bronze in the overall Supreme Champion Beer competition

You can read the full story about our love for Citra hops HERE.

Images below: Alex Kean (Oakham Head Brewer) picking up the award and the Oakham team celebrate with Citra all round !

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Green Devil IPA scoops awards

Oakham’s flagship Green Devil IPA has picked-up accolades at both the International Brewing Awards and at the UK’s largest independent craft brewing trade show.

The cask version scooped a Bronze Medal in the International Brewing Awards’ Cask Class 4 (4.9% – 6.9%) competition as well as Gold in the Cask IPA Category (5.5 – 6.4%) at the Society of Independent Brewers’ BeerX event in Liverpool.

The keg version also won Bronze in the Eastern Regional Keg Class at BeerX.

Green Devil IPA (6.0% ABV and available in keg, cask and bottle) is a year round favourite with both our UK and our export customers.

It’s a beer that we’re very proud of producing, so to see it honoured in the face of such stiff international and national competition is absolutely brilliant news.

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Oakham at CBR19

Oakham Ales was one of 155 breweries at this year’s Craft Beer Rising Festival at the historic Truman Brewery in East London and we had an amazing time as always.

What’s not to like when there’s great music, good food, nice people and lots of beautiful beer!

The highlight – literally – of our stand was a our shiny new LED light display that drew huge crowds and must have been one of the most photographed features of the Festival!

Visitors to our stand were also entertained and informed by our brewing director, John Bryan, wearing his white scientist’s coat to reveal some of the science behind the beer and teaching everyone about his favourite subject – the hops that go into our brews!

Kegs on tap included Green Devil IPA and newcomer Brut IPA and we also brought plenty of cask beers this year. Citra, Blue Skies IPA, Hawse Buckler and Dragon in Bavaria were available on cask and visitors also had a chance to sample our new canned range – Best Friend Session IPA, Thrill Seeker New World Pale and Alpha Inception West Coast IPA.

Thanks to everyone who came to see us, tried our beers, rubbed the hops, put on our tattoos and tried on the bear’s (“Best Friend”) mask! We were really happy to have met so many new faces, thanks for all your kind words about the beers and see you all soon again!

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