Poppyland Brewery's Awards and citations
Norwich & Norfolk CAMRA Awards
From 'Farm assurance', by Des de Moor
"One of my favourite Norfolk breweries is also one of the smallest and newest: Poppyland in Cromer, founded by Martin Warren in 2012. It's one of those decidedly artisanal operations that's always brewing something new and innovative in small, bottled batches, so there are no core brands to recommend, but the beers are never less than interesting and sometimes sublime. I loved Poppyland Norwegian Farmhouse Strong Ale (7.4%) a deliberately near-still black beer made with authentic kveik yeast, rich with rye bread, treacle and slightly piny-gingery hints and balanced by herbal and eucalyptus notes."
CAMRA Beer magazine, Winter 2016
Des de Moor is one of the country's leading writers on bottled beer, and author of CAMRA's London's Best Beer, Pubs & Bars.
The Norwegian Farmhouse Strong Ale is now sold out at the brewery but the second brewing with kveik is out now, called Vossaøl and is also 7.4% abv.
Poppyland is rated Norfolk's top brewer
I am grateful to Poppyland fan Collective Zine (@theczine) for pointing out that the 'beer nerds' on Ratebeer currently (1.2.2016) say that Poppyland was the top brewer in Norfolk in 2015. I can't say I'm not chuffed at that news and that's not bad after only three and a half years in the game. It gives me a great thrill to see Poppyland's name up alongside The Kernel, Burning Sky, Thornbridge, Wild Beer Company etc. Here's the link.
Poppyland on the Beeb
In 2015 Poppyland Brewery received some very welcome publicity when Martin Warren was invited to make a film with David Whiteley for his regular Monday night show Inside Out East. David wanted to film a beer being made, so a plan was hatched to create an old fashioned harvest ale - Hawkey Frolic - using the famous 50-year-old Maris Otter variety of barley malt and an historic 1958 Norwich yeast from the National Collection of Yeast Cultures (NCYC) and this would be debuted at the Maris Otter 50 Beer Festival. You can see the result on BBC iPlayer here or on Youtube here and you can read about the beer here.
Poppyland East Coast voted Joint Winner of 10th Anniversary Ale Competition
The Real Ale Shop on Branthill Farm near Wells next the Sea celebrated its 10th anniversary on the weekend of 31 May-1 June 2014 and farmer Teddy Maufe invited his micro-brewer suppliers to create a 10th Anniversary Ale. I am delighted to announce that Poppyland was awarded Joint Winner with it's East Coast IPA 7% ale, alongside Beeston Brewery's Village Life. This ale features the Maris Otter malt grown on Branthill Farm and floor malted at Crisp's not far away at Great Ryburgh. The mash tun was loaded with all the malt it could hold and this was balanced with oodles of American and New Zealand hops to create a huge American IPA. It proved popular at the Cambridge Beer Festival in cask as well as in bottle and has become a regular Poppyland brew.Read about it in the EDP.
Britain's Brewing Revolution
Poppyland Brewery was highlighted in a book celebrating the most influential locations in the nation's flourishing beer scene.
"Britain's Beer Revolution, published by the Campaign for Real Ale, includes the brewery at Cromer. The book is a contemporary look at the most influential breweries, places and people and what makes them so special." So said the Evening News.
The book was published on 23 October 2014 and is available from the CAMRA website www.camra.org.uk
Brewing Britain: The Quest for the Perfect Pint
Published in October 2013, Andy Hamilton's "Brewing Britain, The Quest for the Perfect Pint and How to Make It" is an excellent read and is full of useful information. I was delighted to learn that the author has selected Poppyland Brewery to be included in the book, one of only 64 chosen from more than 1000 breweries in Britain today. He relates the following experience, dating from 8 September 2012:
Seafood Lovers' Ale, 7.1%, Poppyland, Cromer, Norfolk
"One of the whole reasons for creating a Saison chapter in a book about British beer was not just to be thorough, but to mention this beer. I'd headed east as far as you can go and still be in Britain, and was exploring Norfolk by train. Unfortunately the pubs we were finding either sold beer that I'd already tried, had closed down or were shut for refurbishment. We were starting to lose heart as we soberly traipsed the streets of Cromer. Then, on a residential street, we saw a shop window full of beer neatly displayed in baskets along with a note asking passers-by to call a number. I did so and a rather short, red-faced man came bounding across the street with a basket full of beer. He took us to where his beer conditions - a rather dusty looking room with home-made shelving laden with beer, more shelving in bits waiting to me made, and barrels gurgling away with a secondary fermentation of On the Edge. Martin (the brewer) remarked on the smell. This was the first time I had smelt Saison actually brewing - a smell that filled the air with the haybarns of Wallonia.
"I took the beer away. This time I was forced to wait for it, as not long after this trip my son was born and beer had to take a back seat for a while. When I eventually popped the cork, the room filled again with that haybarn smell.
"When I drank it, I was amazed. Had I found my perfect pint? It was not far off, and was certainly the perfect pint of Saison."