There's a slight weight advantage to the American (5.9% ABV Vs 5.7%), but the Brit has more stamina (500 ml Vs 355). Goose Island is starting the favourite, popular with the British crowd and with a good reputation amongst beer nerds everywhere, but the Old Empire is no mean beer and looks unfazed as it enters the ring in a clear glass bottle, with the Goose Island is in brown.
The caps are off and the bout is on. Only a faint smell from the Old Empire, a rich aroma from goose island of elderflower and grapefruit.
On to the first taste and a good start for the beer from Burton, strong but drinkable, using an orthodox stance. Goose Island counters with its modern American style, the probing aroma, and strong flavour but looking a little clumsy on first taste.
Back to the Old Empire and the strength of the American has taken it's toll, the Brit is still drinking beautifully but the flavour's seeming weak in comparison and is having little effect. The contender from the windy city is getting more settled as the round progresses. Unfortunately we're not as the constant swapping of beers seems to have upped our usual sedate drinking rate giving us bloated stomaches and making us a bit windy ourselves.
Old Empire bravely battles on and never looses its composure but the heavy hands of the American land more telling blows. Though it was more closely fought than many expected there can't be many surprised when the judges find in the American's favour.
A win for Goose Island IPA by 10-9