The UK’s Premier Festival & Competition
for Amateur Wine & Beer Enthusiasts
The 54th Amateur Wine and Beer Festival,
Victoria Hotel TLH Group Torquay 4 May – 7 May 2018
The Festival, organised by the Wales and West Federation, is one of the largest events for people who like to socialise and have an interest in wine and beer. It attracts clubs & circles, craft brewers and wine makers throughout the country. It is now in its 54th year and over that time has grown from a one-day show held in the Function Room of a pub to an event that starts with an aperitif tasting followed by dinner on Friday evening and is packed with features and entertainment, concluding on the Monday with our Annual General Meeting and Weekend Forum.
The Competition and Show is a key part of the Festival and this year there are a record 67 classes which include not only those for wines and beers but also mead, liqueurs, cookery and art associated with wine making. Judging in all the wine and beer classes is by qualified NGWBJ*, WWRJ** & BJCP*** judges and in the other classes by judges who have the relevant experience. Most classes are open to all competitors, whether or not they are members of circles that are affiliated to the Wales and West Federation, but some classes are restricted to affiliated circles and to novice wine makers
Rosettes and place cards are awarded to the first six places in each class with white collars awarded to the unplaced wines that the judges put forward for final selection. The winner of each class is presented with a trophy that he or she holds for a year.
In addition to the trophies for each class, there are a number of trophies for the winners of a group of classes and we have Master Trophies for the overall individual winners in the wine, beer and cookery sections. The trophies are presented on Sunday morning and the display of trophies before the presentation is an impressive sight!
Accommodation at the Festival is on a half-board basis and in 2004 the organising committee decided to have a Gala Dinner on the Saturday evening to celebrate the Festival’s Ruby anniversary. This proved to be very popular with the Festival-goers and although we don’t call it Gala Dinner now guests are invited to get out the posh frocks and evening suits to provide some extra glitz to Saturday evening.
The weekend is packed with entertainment and special features so it doesn’t matter if you’re not entering the competition you will be sure you have a great time.
The Festival ends on Monday morning with an Open Forum, at which anyone can comment on any aspect of the Festival. This is followed by the Annual General Meeting of the Wales and West Federation which is attended by representatives from the wine circles affiliated to the Federation.
* National Guild of Wine and Beer Judges
** Wales & West Regional Wine and Beer Judges
*** Beer Judges Certification Program