Black Sheep Brewery

Continued international success for Black Sheep


Date: 02.05.19

The Black Sheep Brewery is celebrating continued international success as one of its brands has been recognised with another prestigious award.

Following on from its Gold award in the International Dark Beer (3.8%-4.7% ABV) competition at The International Brewing Awards 2019 in March, Milk Stout won the event’s Championship Trophy.

This latest accolade for the Masham-based brewery follows its success at the Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA) National Independent Beer Awards 2019, when Black Sheep’s 54° North was awarded Gold in SIBA’s North East Keg Premium Lager & Pilsners category.

Another of its brands, Glug M’Glug, was named Small Pack Gold Champion in the Porters, Stouts, Old Ales, Strong Milds & Strong Brown Ales category at SIBA’s 2018 awards.

At 4.4% ABV, Milk Stout is brewed with lactose and a robust malt blend that offers drinkers a creamy stout with notes of chocolate, vanilla and coffee and a sweet taste against a light bitterness.

In March 2018, production of Milk Stout was scaled up to the retail market in bottled format as Black Sheep secured a national listing with Tesco. Before then it was only been available as a cask beer.

Jo Theakston, Sales and Marketing Director at The Black Sheep Brewery, said: “We are over the moon to have followed up Milk Stout’s success with this latest award win. The International Brewing Awards is a major event for the industry and features many top brewers, and we are proud of how far Milk Stout has come and its growing popularity among drinkers.

“Milk Stout’s success, along with the other award-winning brands we have in our flock, is testament to the hard work and dedication of our creative brewing team. They put in the hours day-in, day-out to produce great tasting beers enjoyed throughout the UK and beyond, and none of this success would be possible without them.”

Mr Theakston added: “Hopefully we can follow this award win up with further accolades in the future.”



CONTACT: Stuart Nicholls on 01325 363436

Editors Notes:

The Black Sheep Brewery is one of British brewing’s most famous stories and has grown from humble beginnings to become a multi-award winning company, with its beers enjoyed around the world.

Black Sheep has grown to become one of Yorkshire’s most recognised brands, and was unveiled as the official brewery of the 2018 Tour de Yorkshire and is the official brewery of Yorkshire County Cricket Club (YCCC).

In the past 12 months, Black Sheep has won a number of prestigious awards, including:

  • The Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA) National Independent Beer Awards 2018 – Glug M’Glug – Small Pack Gold Champion in the Porters, Stouts, Old Ales, Strong Milds & Strong Brown Ales category
  • The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) Beer Champion 2017
  • World Beer Awards – Choc & Orange Stout – Gold Award
  • World Beer Awards – Riggwelter – Gold Award
  • World Beer Awards – Black Sheep Ale – Silver Award
  • World Beer Awards – My Generation – Bronze Award

Based in Masham, in the heart of North Yorkshire, Black Sheep brewed its first beer in 1992 after being built up by Paul Theakston, whose family had brewed in the area for six generations.

In a world of ever-increasing bland, mass-produced beer, Paul saw an opportunity to return to what his family had done best since 1827, making real beer in the time-honoured fashion.

An old maltings building, once part of Lightfoot's Brewery, became the Brewery’s home. This landmark building, which stands high over the banks of the Ure, had fallen in to disrepair as years of neglect as a semi-redundant grainstore had taken its toll. Paul assembled a small team around him to fight the rats and build a traditional country brewery.

The Visitor Centre, at the site of the iconic brewery, has grown to become an award-winning attraction for visitors to Yorkshire, with tens of thousands of people flocking to Masham each year.

In 2018, Black Sheep announced the purchase of York Brewery, which included the acquisition of four pubs in the business and key cask brands, including Guzzler and Yorkshire Terrier.

The outlets bought by Black Sheep, as part of the deal, are as follows:

  • Last Drop Inn, York
  • Mr Foley’s Tap House, Leeds
  • The Tap Room, York
  • The Three Legged Mare, York

The addition of York Brewery complements the strong, iconic Black Sheep brand and its existing award-winning beers and brands.

The Black Sheep name derived from Masham’s association with sheep, but ‘Sheep Brewery’ didn’t quite sound right, so with a little creativity from Paul’s wife, the Black Sheep Brewery was born - a name that sat well with the area, spoke volumes about the business’ maverick attitude to the multi-nationals seeking to dominate the brewing industry and captured the essence of the family struggle that led to its birth.

Black Sheep’s beers are full of character derived from the best possible brewing materials, plenty of time and patience in the brewing and its very special Yorkshire Square fermenters.

Black Sheep Best Bitter is now one of the best-selling cask session beers in the UK and many of its creative brews, over the course of its 25-year history, have collected numerous awards – ranging from Black Sheep’s traditional ales to its up and coming craft beers.

2017 marked the launch of Black Sheep Brewery’s first lager, 54 Degrees North, created in homage to its hometown of Masham, which sits on 54’ 13’ 24” N; 1’ 39’ 20” W longitude and latitude lines, as the company embarks on an adventurous new chapter in its distinguished history.


Instagram: @blacksheepbrewery

Twitter: @BlackSheepBeer

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Rob and Jo Theakston, Directors of The Black Sheep Brewery plc, toast the award success with pints of Milk Stout
Rob and Jo Theakston, Directors of The Black Sheep Brewery plc, toast the award success with pints of Milk Stout
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