Posts Tagged With: craft

Rocky Head Launch

I had a lovely afternoon today (after waking up a teensy bit hungover from an evening at Craft) visiting my favourite beer shop, Drink of Fulham for the launch of Rocky Head Brewery.

The new London brewery is based in Southfields, south west London (and about a 5 min walk from my flat) and is the weekend hobby for the two brewers, Steve and Pete, who are wine merchants Monday to Friday.

They are currently only brewing a Pale Ale while they build up their reputation and profile but will expand to other brews in time. The Pale Ale is, I think, one of the nicest beers I have tasted. Loads of hoppy flavour, as you’d expect from a pale ale, but a nice smooth finish that doesn’t grip your tongue like other pales can. Very well balanced, it’s a really good beer with bags of flavour, and so good to see something a little different from a local microbrewery.

They hand bottle and label themselves, and stamp each one with a “Bottled On” date, making it feel very hand crafted. Their artisan approach to brewing means that while they try to make each batch the same, differences in hop yield, malts and the small quantity of beer brewed will result in slight variations in each individual brew, giving an interesting variation. Much like the wines with which they are both well acquainted.

The beer was matched with various Gujarati snacks from Shrila, the owner of Drink of Fulham, who had enough faith in the brewery to host the launch before even tasting the beer.

The only tough part was then choosing which beers to take away. So to ease the pain, I had a Rocky Head Pale Ale while I perused. And now, as I’m writing this, I’m drinking the beers I purchased earlier today. Nothing like writing about beer while you drink it.

I will follow this fledgling brewery closely, I think they have a bright future ahead of them. And I will also be back to Drink soon to stock up on some more of their pale ale, and I recommend you do too.

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Categories: Beer, Craft Beer Stockist | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Craft Brixton Opening

Beer. Lots of beer. That’s what comes to mind when I think of the Craft Beer Co., and their new bar in Brixton certainly has it’s fair share. Over 30 beers on tap (about 10 cask and about 20 keg) means that a trip to the bar is not as simple as “3 pints of Stella, please mate.”

But, if you ask me, that is a good thing. A very good thing. I arrived about half past 6, after a long day at work, having already decided to stick to halves so I could try more beers. The bar was quite busy, the little outside seating area already full of happy beer-lovers who somehow managed to get to Brixton on a Friday before 7. Don’t these people have jobs? Anyway, while waiting to be served and taking in the selection, I plumped for Magic Rock’s Craft Magic, brewed especially for the night. Then I thought to myself, “well, I’d usually order a pint, so why not get two halves!”. So I did. I went for a Darkstar Kiwi. The Craft Magic was good, a low ABV session ale and an easy drinker for the first of the day. The Kiwi was delicious, the light, fruty aroma of the kiwi balancing perfectly with the bitter hoppiness.

As I supped my halves at the table I managed to snag, trying to look nonchalant, drinking alone in a busy pub, waiting for my friends, I had a look around the bar. Very minimal, high tables with stools (that had pedals…) and not much else. The bar itself is a marvel, the cask pumps sitting atop the polished copper with a bar over the top for all the keg beers. Seemed a little strange to see staff pouring pints above their heads, but it’s a innovative way to use up the relatively small bar space.

The vibe was good, very busy and buzzy, but with all Craft pubs when they get busy they get quite loud and if you don’t have a seat you can feel a bit lost in the room and a bit in the way.

My friends joined and I sampled the Darkstar Belgian IPA (“Bruges in a glass”, so one of my friends proclaimed) and another beer brewed especially for the pub’s opening, the cranberry milk stout Crafty Jane from the Ilkley Brewery (like an old, warm country pub – smokey leather).

The evening progressed, the bar got busier and the waiting time for drinks got longer. But I guess that’s to be expected on the opening night, and a Friday to boot.

The real highlight beer of the evening for me was Thornbridge’s Chiron, a golden ale/blonde beer (so say’s the label) that is delicious, absolutely beautiful. A perfect balance of hoppiness, sweetness and dryness that makes it very drinkable and very moreish.
So, all in all, a very nice evening. And a great addition to Brixton and craft beer. That’s if you like beer. If not, well then why are you reading this? Honestly.

Categories: Beer, Pub | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Noble Green Wines, Hampton Hill

I only found out about this place relatively recently, in the last 6 months or so, and have only visited it once as its a little out of London, but I will definitely be a regular here (my brother, who lives nearby, has been a few times…much to my jealousy).

It is primarily a wine shop, with most of the shop housing a wide selection from around the world. But when I went, I wasn’t interested in that. I went straight to the beer section – there’s a room to the side with an extensive range of bottles: ales, wheat, craft, Belgian, lagers. Definitely something for everyone.

The real standout for this shop, however, is the cask ale. 20-odd casks sitting in rows, all waiting to be tasted! Admittedly, not all of them are available as some are resting, but there’s always a good selection. The staff are very friendly and accommodating, happy to pour out tasters and give suggestions. They seem to be regular stockers of various Twickenham Ales brews, as that’s local to them, and when I was there they had at least 4 Dark Stars on, including their American Pale Ale and the seasonal Summer Meltdown, spiced with ginger – delicious!
They pour your chosen beer into plastic milk bottles (2, 4 or 8 pints), or 5, 10 and 20 litre kegs/boxes for a few of you (or if you’re a fast drinker), and they even do the full firkins for parties, etc, but I think they need some notice for that.
A wonderful shop, and the only place I know if in London that you can get cask ale to take away…anyone know of anywhere else that does this?

Find out everything you need to know here, and definitely go and visit them

Categories: Craft Beer Stockist | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

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