British beer crowned 'best lager in the world'

British beer brand Hofmeister Helles has been crowned the best lager in the world at the 2017 Beer Awards.

It is also the first lager to be awarded five stars in the esteemed competition, which is in its second year and is run by the International Wine & Spirits Group.

The alcohol accolade is awarded to the best beer as voted for in a series of blind taste tests.

The win marks a triumphant comeback for the British-born brand, after it was taken off pub shelves 13 years ago due to falling sales.

Due to its low alcohol content (five per cent), experts believe that the beer dwindled in popularity because higher strength lagers became more in-demand.

However, by championing its Bavarian heritage and returning to its roots, the beer has returned as an authentic Helles lager and has surged in popularity as a result.

The revamped Hofmeister has been crafted by a family-owned brewery just outside of The Ebersberger Forest in southern Germany. It is a totally different beer to the original, with lower carbonation and a lighter, golden blonde colour.

“It is a gentle, highly complex beer, which showcases lager brewing at its best and the importance of good quality raw materials,” said Tim Hampson, judge and chairman of the Beer Writers Guild.

“It’s light, bright and very drinkable. Very well balanced. It is hard to cut corners when brewing a beer of this style.”

The new team behind Hofmeister, which now operates under The Hofmeister Brewing Company, includes co-founders Richard Longhurst and Spencer Chambers and former marketing chief at Coca Cola, Zoe Howorth.

The brand was made famous in the 1980s with a series of ad campaigns fronted by an iconic, inspector gadget-hat-wearing mascot, George the bear.

Back then, the beer was produced by a Scottish brewery, however, its reincarnated version is now imported directly from Bavaria.

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