Round Corner

• • • Best Pale Ale • • •


It’s been a big year for Round Corner, with the Melton Mowbray-based brewery taking its passion for pairing food with beer of uncompromising quality to new heights. The brewery’s flagship pale ale, Steeplechase, has played no small part in drumming up interest in its uncommonly good beer, making it a worthy winner of this year’s Best Pale Ale award. 

Since we last spoke to co-founders Combie Cryan and Colin Paige in the summer of 2022, Steeplechase has won the International Beer Awards’ super-prestigious World Champion Ale gong. As the first to bring the cup back to the UK since 2010, and with past winners of the award including names like Sierra Nevada, Firestone Walker and Deschutes, the Round Corner team will host a beer and food festival this November to celebrate Steeplechase’s win. 

Among its other accolades this year, Round Corner is particularly proud to have won the Glenn Payne trophy for the Rising Star Award at the 2023 International Beer Challenge. The award recognises breweries that produce a wide range of award-winning beers, acknowledgement for which was particularly appreciated by Round Corner, given their focus on producing accessible beer that can welcome and excite newcomers to the craft beer world. 

With an action-packed year now under his belt, I ask Combie what advice Round Corner might give to a younger version of itself. “With COVID and its after-effects, it can be tempting to slip into tactical and reactive mode on almost all aspects of business,” says Combie. “It’s entirely possible to work your socks off and at the same time, become so focused on growth that you risk not being clear about what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. We can’t really say we’ve got it nailed, but what we are doing this year is focusing on the parts of the business that bring us joy, like working with venues and festivals who will pour volume and return our love. We also plan on saying ‘no’ more often, and in doing so, try to steer a better work-life balance for all our team.”

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