They say…

Des de Moor
Best beer and travel writing award 2015, 2011 -- British Guild of Beer Writers Awards
Accredited Beer Sommelier
Writer of "Probably the best book about beer in London" - Londonist
"A necessity if you're a beer geek travelling to London town" - Beer Advocate
"A joy to read" - Roger Protz
"Very authoritative" - Tim Webb.
"One of the top beer writers in the UK" - Mark Dredge.
"A beer guru" - Popbitch.
Des de Moor

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Beer writers laud London guide

2011 Budweiser Budvar John White Travel Bursary

For some reason I failed to return home with the usual bottles of free beer from last night’s British Guild of Beer Writers annual awards dinner, but I did have a new engraved pewter tankard, a framed certificate, a generous cheque from České Budějovice, and a very big smile on my face. I won the Budweiser Budvar John White Travel Bursary for best travel writing for my book The CAMRA Guide to London’s Best Beer, Pubs and Bars. Having written many pieces over the years tagging the epithet “award winning” (or should that be “award-winning”) before “brewery”, “beer” or “pub” like a seasoned hack, I’m glad to say I can now finally describe myself as an award winning beer writer.

It’s the first time I’ve ever won anything like this, and needless to say I feel delighted, but also vindicated, as, modesty aside, I’m extremely proud of the book. I feel it achieved its aims of being a bit more than a prosaic beer guidebook, capturing a very exciting moment for beer and brewing in and setting it within the city’s broader social history and geography. It’s great to have that recognised, particularly by my peers, as the award was judged by other beer writers, publishers and journalists.

The announcement drew very warm applause and cheers from the 230-strong crowd of beer writers and brewing industry folk, which I’ve not experienced since my heady days performing David Bowie songs with the late Russell Churney in our Darkness and Disgrace cabaret show. And there was further good news for London — indeed for southeast London — when Evin O’Riordan, founder and head brewer of the extraordinary Kernel brewery in Bermondsey, won Brewer of the Year despite only being in the business a couple of years, drawing a similar level of appreciation from the crowd. I’d been one of many Guild members who nominated him.

Between Evin, myself and the wonderful Marverine Cole, aka Beer Beauty, from Britain’s second biggest city, who won for her regional TV work, I think we did best on the clapometer score, even if we didn’t make the top award, which went to the ever-inventive, though clearly surprised, Ben McFarland.

I’m grateful, of course, to the judges, and to the Guild for organising the award and the dinner, which gets better every year. I’m also grateful to CAMRA Books, who handed me the opportunity to write the book at just the right moment. And to the several thousand people who’ve bought it so far, and the Czech taxpayers who, despite the best efforts of their government, still own Budvar. And Ian, who is relieved. But I’ll save the blubbing Oscar speech for when I win top dog, and let you know what České Budějovice’s like when I get there.

You can read more about the awards online at www.beerwriters.co.uk/news.php?x=1&showarticle=1855 and a press release from CAMRA celebrating awards to me and to Adrian Tierney-Jones at www.camra.org.uk/page.aspx?o=whatsnew1.

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