The Champion Beer at the 2021 Brewers Guild Awards pours black and heavily opaque for its lighter 5.9 per cent ABV, with exceptionally tight and creamy coffee-tan head, which may well be a result of its time stored under higher carbonation. The nose deftly touches all the porter notes of roasted malt, toffee, chocolate and coffee, with a distinct fresh cream aroma despite the absence of lactose. The hops integrate perfectly, adding a spice and dried fruit character that holds the whole aroma beautifully aloft. The palate starts off rich with sweet roasted malt and stone fruit, before pivoting around almost completely into an arresting black coffee bitterness, with drying smoke and flinty minerality which wind together into the earthy finish. Full bodied but effortlessly nimble, classic and yet mysterious. Despite being ‘just’ a porter, Unforgiven takes that one brush and paints a masterpiece in black.