Beer author and filmmaker Jonny Garrett has been named Beer Writer of the Year 2022 at the Guild of Beer Writers’ Annual Awards, presented on 23 November.
Beer Writer of the Year is the top accolade in the Guild’s annual competition for communication about beer and pubs, which this year received 190 entries across 16 categories – the highest number ever, and matched with a record prize fund of £19,500, shared between 27 Gold and Silver award winners.
On his way to the top honour, Garrett won Gold Awards in the categories for Pub Communications, Books and Video Communications – the latter with Brad Evans, his co-presenter on the Craft Beer Channel on YouTube. His book, A Year in Beer, was published earlier this year by CAMRA, and he also contributes regularly to beer magazines and websites such as Good Beer Hunting. Garrett has been named Beer Writer of the year once before, in 2019.
Pete Brown, chair of judges for this year’s Awards after taking the Beer Writer of the Year title in 2021, said, “Choosing an overall Beer Writer this year was exceptionally hard, but Jonny was the judges’ choice because of the range of his work, from print articles to website posts, films and a new book. Whatever he does, he has complete mastery of his topic, thanks to painstaking research, and is able to communicate it to beer nerds or a generalist audience. If we ever get a beer programme on mainstream TV, Jonny should definitely make it!
“We were impressed by the standard of submissions across the board this year. The knowledge, energy and passion shone through entries whether newspaper columns, blog posts, books or films. Several winners tonight are relatively new to beer and pub writing, proving that our robust judging rewards talent, not time served.
“Everyone who received an award or a commendation should be extremely proud; they really are the cream of British beer writing in 2022 and we wish them all success in their future career communicating about beer, pubs and cider.”
The Guild revised its Awards this year, splitting the previous Broadcast category into Audio and Video sections and introducing new Awards for Best Communication about Diversity in Beer and Pubs, and for Best Communication about Cider, following the decision to include cider writing within the Guild’s remit.
Brown was joined on the judging panel by Mitch Adams, Beer Sommelier and beer buyer at Euroboozer; Molly Davis, head of communications at the BII; Claire Dodd, travel and drinks writer; Matt Eley, communications consultant and former editor of Inapub magazine; Fergus Fitzgerald, production director at Adnams; Kelly McCarthy CBII, licensee of the Old Sun Inn in Yorkshire; John Mitchinson, co-founder of crowdfunding publishers Unbound; Ned Palmer, cheesemonger and author and Michelle Perrett, industry journalist and communications expert.
The Brewer of the Year title, sponsored by SIBA, was presented to Andy Parker, founder and head brewer at Elusive Brewing, who won the highest number of votes in a poll of Guild members.
Presenting the Award, Guild Chair Emma Inch said: “Andy’s passion for brewing shows in every beer he produces, and what ends up in the glass is always a shining example of its style. He hasn’t forgotten his homebrew roots, running an annual competition that gives the winner a platform to brew their own beer, and benefit from his time and knowledge as a mentor.”
The winners were announced at the Guild’s annual dinner held at One Great George Street in Westminster. Each dish was served with a specially selected drink: Asahi Fuller’s Honey Dew; Little Pomona Wading In Cider; Geipel Bock; Bohem Amos; Thornbridge Jehanne and Adnams Broadside. Beers from some of the Award’s sponsors– Asahi UK, Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company, Greene King, Heineken, Krombacher, Shepherd Neame, St Austell Brewery, VisitFlanders and SIBA - were enjoyed before and after dinner.
AND THE WINNERS WERE...
SIBA Award for Brewer of the Year
Andy Parker, Elusive Brewing
Guild Award for Best Corporate Beer Communications
Winner: Untold Agency for Republic of Beer campaign for Budweiser Budvar UK
Guild Award for Best Citizen Beer Communicator, sponsored by Krombacher
Winner: Oli Haydon for www.youtube.com/user/pintsizedthinking
Silver Award: Matthew Rogers for CAMRAngle
Award for Best Beer Business Communicator
Winner: Stephen Beaumont for articles in Just Drinks
Best Communication about Pubs, sponsored by Shepherd Neame
Winner: Jonny Garrett for films on cask ale https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MHv4ebfo4mc
Silver Award: Alastair Gilmour for articles in Meet and Drink: The Microbus, Gateshead (review) (meet-and-drink.co.uk)
Highly Commended: David Jesudason for articles in Good Beer Hunting
Award for Best Communication about Beer & Travel, sponsored by VISITFLANDERS
Winner: Lily Waite for articles in Pellicle You Had Me At Hello — The Salutation Inn at Ham, Gloucestershire — Pellicle (pelliclemag.com)
Silver Award: Dan Saladino for chapters from his book Eating to Extinction
Award for Best Communication about Sustainability in Beer and Pubs, sponsored by Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company UK
Winner: Anthony Gladman for articles in Ferment and IBD
Silver Award: Mark Dredge for articles in Ferment
Award for Best Communication about No and Low Alcohol Beers, sponsored by Budweiser Brewing Group UK&I
Winner: Laura Hadland for blog articles https://www.extremehousewife.com/2022/01/low-alcohol-ale/
Silver Award: Jane Peyton for Food Talk Show https://foodtalk.co.uk/podcasts/dry-drinker-january/
Award for Best Audio Beer Communicator, sponsored by Asahi UK
Winner: Eoghan Walsh for A History of Brussels Beer in 50 Objects — Brussels Beer City
Silver Award: Jane Peyton for articles on Food Talk Show https://foodtalk.co.uk/podcasts/wish-you-were-beer/
Guild Award for Best Video Beer Communication, sponsored by St Austell Brewery
Winner: Jonny Garrett & Brad Evans for Craft Beer Channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52nl1Fh6qnQ
Silver: Danny Savage for pub stories broadcast on BBC News
Award for Best Newcomer to Beer Communication, sponsored by Fuller Smith & Turner
Winner: Reece Hugill for article in Pellicle: I Want To See Mountains Again — The Banked Beers of Teesside, North East England — Pellicle (pelliclemag.com
Silver Award: Ashley Joanna for articles in Belgian Smaak The Sage (Humans of Belgian Beer) | Belgian Smaak
Award for Best Book about Beer or Pubs, sponsored by Heineken UK
Winner: Jonny Garrett for A Year in Beer (CAMRA)
Silver Award: Jaega Wise for Wild Brews
Highly Commended: Em Sauter for Hooray for Craft Beer
Best Beer Communicator, Regional Media, sponsored by Adnams
Winner: Alastair Gilmour for articles in Meet and Drink Battlesteads, Wark (meet-and-drink.co.uk)
Silver Award: Ashley Joanna for articles in Belgian Smaak The Adventurer (Humans of Belgian Beer) | Belgian Smaak
Highly Commended: Breandán Kearney for articles in The Brussels Times Magazine
Award for Best Communication about Cider, sponsored by Inch’s Cider
Winner: Gabe Cook for Modern British Cider
Silver Award: James Crowden for Cider Country
The Michael Jackson Gold Award for Beer Writer of the Year 2022: