Ridgeway Bad King John

Bad King John

It was the week after New Year and I just happened to be stocking up in Sainsbury's, as you do. Imagine my delight when, far from empty shelves, there was a good supply of none other than the Sainsbury's Great British Beer Hunt winner, Bad King John from Ridgeway Brewery.

Easy choice that one and, sampling it now, it's lost none of its appeal.

With its friendly milky coffee/dark chocolate flavours and well-judged carbonation, it packs in the taste without clogging the palate.But then brewer Peter Scholey is a bit of an expert. Former head brewer at Brakspear's Brewery in Henley, he struck out on his own about ten years ago.

Ridgeway foundersSeen here with his partner-in-crime, wife Valda, he expressed his happiness to Beer Beauty, Marverine Cole after the event, saying that now, as well as buying his beers around the globe, his bottles will be available in the UK.

Runner-up was the rather dashing Caesar Augustus, a cross between a lager and an IPA, from the ever-innovative Williams Brothers in Scotland.

As winner of this great initiative, part of Sainsbury's clear commitment to regional sourcing of beers, Bad King John secured a six-month listing in Sainsburys around the country, so seek this out while you can.

If sales look good, you never know this interesting beer could become a permanent fixture. Now that can't be bad.

6%, £2.09; Sainsburys & selected independent beer shops