Black Pint

Joseph Holt adds to its trophy cabinet by winning gongs from international jury

Manchester-based brewery Joseph Holt is known for being – as its slogan goes – `unmistakably Northern`.

But this hasn`t held the iconic family business from clinching two gold medals in a prestigious competition judged by brewers from around the world.

The International Brewing & Cider Awards 2024 is often known as the `Oscars` of the brewing industry, with products crowned at the event regarded as the best in the world. And this year Joseph Holt, which runs 127 pubs across the North West, clinched top awards for Black in the Dark Beer category (2.9 – 3.7% ABV)  and for  Spin Doctor in the Keg Lager category (4.5 – 6.9% ABV). This was a second win for Black which won gold in the 2015 awards.

The double wins were especially meaningful for Joseph Holt since Manchester hosted the brewing industry ‘Oscars’ for the first time in its 138-year history.  This year Joseph Holt  – which has been in the family for six generations – celebrates its 175th anniversary, after being established by its eponymous founder, Joseph Holt in 1849 in Manchester.

Head brewer for Joseph Holt, Phil Parkinson said the awards reflect the company`s consistent approach to brewing beers to such a high standard. Previous gold medal wins for Joseph Holt include a 2021 gong for Sixex which has been brewed to the same recipe for over 100 years.

He said: “The two wins reflect the quality of our products across the board. Black is a hugely popular dark ale featuring chocolate notes with a slight nutty finish and the pitch black brew is finished with a creamy head. And in contrast, Spin Doctor is a clean tasting, straw coloured lager in which herbal notes blend with the balanced melon and peach characteristics of Australian hops. Black is a dark ale made from complex malts which make it taste far stronger than it is. Meanwhile Spin Doctor reflects a judicious use of hops which makes it a crisp, quaffable lager.”

Yet despite adding more awards to the burgeoning Joseph Holt trophy cabinet,  Phil adds that there`s no room for complacency.

He added “These medals are tough to win once, let alone consistently, so this really is a fantastic achievement and something for all the brewers at Joseph Holt to be proud of. But we never take it for granted and are always driven by the need to produce quality products for our customers.”

For the first time, the awards were accompanied by a public two-day International Brewing & Cider  Festival.

Ruth Evans MBE, Director of the International Brewing & Cider Awards, said: “It’s been an honour to recognise and celebrate the extraordinary beers and ciders across the world at our new home here in Manchester. We’re thrilled to be able to continue to provide a platform to reward the best beers and ciders with the recognition they so truly deserve. And for the first time ever expand to launch our Festival, providing the public a chance to sample these award-winning drinks from the most extensive collection of international beers and cider in Europe.”

All the gold, silver and bronze medal winners announced at Depot Mayfield, Manchester will collect their medals at an official Awards Ceremony on 1st May 2024 at The Guildhall in London, when 12 trophy winners will also be announced.

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