It is said that you can find anything you want in London. That now might not be far from the truth when it comes to beer. Usually at the front of trends, it seems as if London as a whole realised they had blinked and missed the start of craft beer in other trend setting towns and have raced to catch up. The biggest trend in the new trend of craft beer was hops. Lots of hops. American hop centric beers were what everyone was brewing and what everyone was loving. It was like the whole city had just American hops for the first time and were going lupulin crazy! Breweries and brewpubs are popping up everywhere and those who saw the trend early have expanded rapidly and beyond belief. Chatting to one of the brewers at an extremely popular brewery he told me they sold a very majority of their beer within 20 miles of their brewery and their brewery was under a railway arch in an industrial area.
While hops were easy to seek out, what was harder to find in London was great traditional beer. It seems that before ‘new beer’ was on trend all of the rest of beer was out of fashion in London. Beer was just cheap pints of fizzy yellow liquid used to was down the scratchings at the pub. However, with a little help from my friends I was able to find a few great pubs serving local cask ales which I drank along with some pork pies. What I didn’t expect was to find was bunches traditional British cider being poured at the same places. Being a brewer of beer, but a lover of all fermented drinks I knew nothing of cider and asked a bunch of questions. They were each labelled clearly with alcohol strength and by the dryness of the cider which I figured out (through trial) was more so the degree to which the tannins were balanced by residual sugar. The publican told me some were clean and some were funky-and they were. They were also completely diverse and delicious.