Poppyland Brewery, in Cromer, Norfolk, is celebrating an International Beer Challenge award for its first lager.

Dave Mandy Cornell
Dave and Mandy Cornell, owners of Poppyland Brewery, on the steps of the former Tucker’s Hotel, in Cromer, where the Empress Elizabeth of Austria once stayed, with bottles of the award-winning Empress Vienna Lager

Empress Vienna Lager (5.3% ABV) has been awarded a bronze medal in the 2021 competition. The style has seen a revival in recent years, with drinkers appreciating the beer’s malt-driven flavours. It matches well with foods such as grilled meats.

Poppyland’s take on the style is named after the Empress Elizabeth of Austria, wife of the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph, who stayed at Tucker’s Hotel, in Cromer, in the summer of 1887.

It was brewed with Vienna malt, German Pilsen malt, and a tiny amount of a secret speciality malt. It ishopped with Perle, Styrian Aurora, and Styrian Celeja, and fermented with Munich lager yeast.

Brewery owner, Dave Cornell, said: “I’m delighted that our very first attempt at making a lager at Poppyland has been so successful. It was a one-off, as are most of our beers, but we will almost certainly be brewing it again next year after this win.”

The win for Empress Vienna Lager is the second success this year for Poppyland Brewery. In April, its Sweet Chestnut Ale won a silver medal in the London Beer Competition.

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