Beer connoisseur and passionate pub campaigner, Mark gives us his decision on the tastiest beer he has sampled in the last seven days.

Mark has been highlighting the values of Britain’s favourite drink for many years. He is a member of the British Guild of Beer Writers. Follow @realaleupnorth on Twitter.

There are a plethora of beers that are deservedly described as iconic beers. Samuel Smith Yorkshire Stingo (strong ale) is certainly one of them: a beer that boasts distinctive excellence, character and taste.

This strong ale at 8 per cent is aged for 12 months, deep down in their Tadcaster brewery’s underground cellars. A period that involves a combination of wooden cask aging and bottle conditioning.

The beer is dark copper in presentation, with a white fluffy head that dissipates rather quickly. The aroma has bags of dried fruit, malt loaf and a hint of caramelised sugar. More dried fruit,(raisins and figs) in the taste, in addition to dark berries, caramel and a subtle leathery note. They are blended to perfection - and creates a delightfully sweet, rich and smooth mouthfeel. It could be described as Christmas cake in a glass!

There was yet more dried fruit, alcohol warmth and some subtle tartness, in the lingering, moderately dry finish. A quite stunning, delicious, deep-flavoured and complex brewing masterpiece. Wow!