Gold, gold, bronze, bronze at SIBA national awards 2020

Gold, gold, bronze, bronze at SIBA national awards 2020

If you start reading this blog and think you've read it before, don't stop reading! We've won awards before and yes even in the same competition but this just makes it more impressive. Read on to find out about the SIBA national 2020 competition.

The brewery came away with four awards - two gold and two bronze - from the Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA)’s annual UK-wide competition. 

After regional heats in all corners of the UK, the national competition is a true test of some of the best beers from SIBA members all over the country. Judged as part of the BeerX conference, by chosen industry professionals, winning beers are rightly recognised as excellent examples of their style.

The winning Swannay beers are detailed in the table below. Unlike some competitions, only a short list of beers were put forward for awards.




Banyan (cask)


Cask Session IPA

Orkney Blast (cask)


Cask IPA

Orkney Blast (cask)


Overall cask champion

Muckle IPA (keg)


Keg Imperial IPA

Orkney Blast is one of Swannay’s most established beers, it has been a core offering since 2007 and is a 6.0% strong ale that is both sweet and hoppy at the same time. Orkney Blast can be found in cask and bottle around select outlets in Scotland and the UK.

Banyan and Muckle are more modern styles from the Mutiny range. Banyan is a 3.9% session IPA that is Swannay’s fastest growing volume beer - it was second only to flagship pale ale Scapa Special in late 2019 trade. Muckle is an IPA styled on the bitter hop bombs from America’s West Coast. In the same competition last year, Muckle claimed the overall top prize.

The latest awards take Swannay’s haul of national and international accolades  to well over 150 since brewing started in 2006. Surely one of Scotland’s most decorated breweries of recent times.

Lewis Hill, general manager at Swannay Brewery congratulated the dedicated Swannay team on the latest awards. “We’ve been in the midst of a major building project for over a year now and to win such awards at this time is testament to our pervading focus on making world class beer, no matter what. We cannot wait to continue to build on our successes in our high spec, upgraded brewery.”

Swannay Brewery was founded in 2004 by longstanding and decorated brewer Rob Hill. Repurposing a disused cheese factory on the northwesterly tip of Orkney’s mainland, the brewery’s overarching focus from day one has been the quality of its beer. Still an independent family business, Rob, son Lewis, and a further team of four are currently upgrading the old cow sheds into a landmark brewery with tasting room and full visitor experience. 

The current project consists of a £1m+ spend on buildings plus new plant & machinery and is supported by Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Scottish Government and Clydesdale Bank funding and borrowing. Production capacity will more than double and sustainable measures will be implemented to reduce carbon footprint.


Swannay Brewery development 2020