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LBW 2015: A look back

A look back at the very first LBW in 2015.

London Beer Week launched in 2015 and welcomed 10,000 beer-lovers to the city – enjoying £3 speciality beers and £5 Boilermakers in over 100 brilliant venues across the capital.

In partnership with Craft Beer Rising, hosted at The Old Truman Brewery – London Beer Week hosted it’s pop-up hub in conjunction with Sharp’s Brewery and their exclusive secret bar where you could enjoy your first beer of the week on us.

With a second hub in historic Carnaby Street and more pop-ups scattered among the pedestrianized surrounding streets, we hosted live music nights, beer and bourbon pairings and late night parties plus a charity 5k fun run (in the rain) in partnership with Two Fingers Brewing with all proceeds being donated to prostate cancer research.

Guinness hosted a roaming wristband collection point popping up in Shoreditch, Bankside, Camden and Oxford Circus where you could sample their new brews from the Brewer’s Project – a delicious bottled Dublin Porter and a West Indies Porter. 


An Introduction to the Inaugural LBW by Ben McFarland

Welcome to the inaugural London Beer Week.

Londoners are lucky folk. Not content with a fancy Ferris wheel, its very own Wax Museum and regular direct trains to Luton, the Capital currently boasts what must be, surely, the most thriving craft beer scene on the planet.

It has certainly never been a more brilliant time to be a beer drinker in London. The last time London was blessed with this much great local beer was the eighteenth century when it was an unrivalled ale-making metropolis and brewers not bankers occupied the Capital’s industrial engine room. 

Porter, Stout and India Pale Ale are all beer styles born and bred in the Big Smoke and, at its peak, London’s skyline was smudged by the bellowing smokestacks of more than 130 breweries.

But that was then and by 2006, London’s proud brewing status had shrivelled up like a crisp packet in a roaring fire and the number of respected breweries in London could be counted on the fingers of one hand – as long as it was a hand with six, maybe seven fingers.

Thankfully, in the last few years, London has rediscovered its microbrewing mojo in quite spectacular fashion. From Bermondsey to Bow and Tottenham to Twickenham, there are now approximately 70 craft breweries in the Capital enhancing the lives of London’s elbow-benders with flavour, integrity, proper ingredients, plenty of passion and an unprecedented diversity of choice.

From Fullers in Chiswick, London’s largest brewer, to miniscule micros like Herne Hill’s “Head in a Hat”, London’s craft brewers are cranking the style knob all the way up to eleven, exploring old styles, inventing new ones, twisting on classics and taking on influences and approaches from distilling and winemaking,  

London’s brewing horizons now stretch to an astonishing array of styles – from saisons and sours to wild beers and fruity weizens via Kolsch-style brews, heavily-hopped IPAs, tasty table beers, porters, pilsners and pale ales…the list could go on but then it would just be a unnecessary list of beer styles… slowly filling up this paragraph until it looks respectfully full. There. That should do it.

Whatever you do, don’t be hoodwinked by the name. “London Beer Week” is a seven day celebration of beers from all over the world (not just within the M25), embracing the best beer from the USA, Europe and beyond in cask, keg, bottle and can.

Culminating in “Craft Beer Rising” at the Old Truman Brewery in Brick Lane, and consisting of everything from pop-ups and parties, to masterclasses, tastings and self-guided Beer Tours, “London Beer Week” is the beer festival that London’s craft brewing community has been waiting for.

So stop reading this, grab yourself a glass and get involved.

Cheers, Ben 


Beers Served:

Across London bars we served:

Guinness Dublin Porter, Dublin Pale Ale, Innis and Gunn Original, Hobo, Nicholson's Pale Ale, Camden Hells Lager, Whitstable Bay Oyster Stout, Fourpur Pale Ale, Big Smoke Dark Water Porter, Lindeboom Pilsner, Hix IPA, Gavel, Meantime Brewery Fresh London Lager, Curious Brew, Hibernation White IPA, Averbode, St Feuillien Blonde, Kernel Pale Ale, Mahou, Einstok Icelandic Pale Ale, Herman's Market Brew, Guinness West Indies Porter, Lagunitas IPA, Affligem Blond, White Coffee Stout, Mad Goose, Aurelio Golden Artisan Beer, Jake's Kentish Cider, Wolf Pack Lager, St Peter's Best Bitter, Delerium Tremens, American Pale Ale, Epic Pale Ale, Sharps High Five Australasian IPA, Wolf Rock Red IPA, Adnams Old Ale, Wandle Best Bitter, Hammerton Pentonville Oyster Stout, Buxton Spa, Hiver Honey Beer, Redemption Big Chief Cask Ale, Lagunitas IPA, Frontier, Camden Town Pale Ale, Thyme of the Saison, Bethnal Pale Ale, ELB Pale Ale, Raleigh, Rodenbach Grand Cru, N7 Pale Ale, Sambrook's Wandle, Elixir Lager, Beatnik, Thwaites 13 guns IPA, Gwynt y Ddraig Black Dragon Cider, Guinnes and Fourpure Session IPA.


Participating Bars:

With over 100 bars serving £3 speciality beers and £5 Boilermakers, the involvement from the industry was huge. Venues included Craft Beer Co, Ask For Janice, Draft House, The Sun Tavern, The Old Fountain, Belgo, London Fields Taproom and Cask Pub & Kitchen. You can see last year's complete list here. 



Exciting and engaging events ran across the entire week from tastings and dinners to parties and launches.