Returning for its second year, London Beer Week 2016 took over the city in style, bringing with it plenty of incredible beers and Boilermakers. Finding its home in the Old Truman Brewery – an iconic beer soaked landmark from London’s brewing past – the festival and its patnering brands created four fantastic pop-ups including the home and heart of the week, the Sharp's Brewery London Beer Week Hub.
As a partner event of Craft Beer Rising, the festival welcomed thousands of wine trade professionals all keen to get join in with the festivities.
We then set the weekend off with bang serving beers and shots at our very own Boilermaker Bar where guests rolled the dice to pick their poison. Throw in some bluesy rock and roll music and you had the party of your life.
An Introduction to London Beer Week 2016 by Melissa Cole
Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the greatest city on earth – and whilst I may be a teensy bit biased, as I live here and love it, I defy you to find a nation's capital that has a more vibrant beer scene than London right now.
From historic pubs to eclectic pop-ups and street food to fine dining, beer's time has come in our magnificent metropolis.
And London Beer Week is a great way to discover just a small part of what is going on. With around 80 breweries and brewpubs around the city and nearly 100 venues signed up to LBW just waiting to introduce you to the very finest this fair city has to offer you, what’s not to love?
This year the LBW hub will be in the Old Truman Brewery in the capital’s thriving East End, which feels apt as this is not only one of the most venerable names in London brewing history but is also one of the most thriving areas of town for great beer – and will also play host to fabulous Craft Beer Rising Friday 26 - Saturday 27.
But there are events happening all over and local breweries such as Beavertown, Camden Town Brewery, Crate, Fuller’s, Meantime and Moncada will all be holding various events to engage your mouths and minds equally but, London Beer Week is as diverse as the area’s population and is also hosting some welcome interlopers from further afield like Sharp’s from Cornwall and Stillwater from the US.
I’m also particularly excited about the array of beer and food events being held during this week’s LBW, with everyone from Sharp’s to Peroni and Fuller’s to Meantime showing off how perfect this pairing can be.
So, I hope you enjoy this amazing city that I call home and remember: beer is for life, not just for LBW, so drink up people!
Award-winning beer writer & author of Let Me Tell You About Beer
Beers & Boilermakers Served:
An example of the pints and bottles we served across London:
Hawksmoor Spitalfields Bar: Oatmeal Cookie Stout - A rich, chocolatey brew with roasted nuts and caramel created by Brew by Numbers.
Culpeper: Big Hug Hibernation IPA - A hybrid style beer which is a cross between a wheat beer and an IPA, dry hopped with Citra.
Two Floors: Camden IHL - A hop-heavy hybrid of Indian Hell’s lager and India pale ale from the Camden Town Brewery.
Dean Swift: Beavertown - A small batch release from this iconic North London brewery.
Hops & Glory: Hops & Glory Pale Ale - A hoppy pale ale with sessionable tropical fruit aromas.
Wenlock and Essex: Rodenbach Grand Cru - A blend of young and mature oak-aged beers with a fruity taste and intensity.
The Jerusalem Tavern: St. Peter’s Brewery Golden Ale - A distinctive hoppy golden ale with English Pale malts plus Challenger and Goldings hops.
The Draft House Charlotte W1: Left Handed Giant, Special Pacific Pale - A full flavoured pale ale from the South West with strong tropical fruit flavours, packed with Australian hops.
Lowlander: Vedett IPA - A hoppy India pale ale with citrus notes and a dry bitter finish.
Boilermakers included upgrades to pairings with Bulleit Bourbon, Woodford Reserve, Becherovka liqueur, Elements of Islay Peat, Jameson Caskmates and Highland Park 12-year-old Scotch.
With over 100 bars serving £3 specality beers and £5 Boilermakers, the involvement from the industry was huge. Venues included Hawksmoor, Hops & Glory, The Sun Tavern, The Jugged Hare, The Rake, Foxlow, Ask For Janice and Old Red Cow. You can see last year's complete list here.
London Beer Week 2016 boasted a stellar line-up of events. You could learn about beers and Boilmakers, taste pints alongside five-course dinners or samples alongside snacks, you could be whisked off to a Secret Bar, confess your sins or simply party the week away. Here's an example of some of the hightlight events:
Fuller's Beer and Food Matching: An expert from Fuller's hosted an evening, talking guests through the beer flavour profiles as well as the specially created dishes.
Glasses & Grains - Woodford Reserve Boilermaker Tasting: Tom Vernon - Woodford Reserve brand ambassador - and the team at Powder Keg Diplomacy developed a unique beer and whiskey tasting designed to highlight the merits of the different expressions of bourbon and the character of some fine Anspach & Hobday beers.
The House of Peroni Presents Italian Superclub: At Union Street Café, the stylish Gordon Ramsay restaurant in Southwark, a masterclass on Peroni Nastro Azzurro Infusions took place where guests were taught to make their own special aperitif, a Peroni Nastro Azzurro Piccola on arrival, plus Peroni Nastro Azzurro Alta during a three-course meal.
Crate Tutored Tastings: CRATE's main bar/tap room saw a craft beer extravaganza over the week. Guests were guided through the depths and delights of some of the world's top IPA, Pale, Stout/Porter, and Sour beers, tasting a selection of our guest beers as well as their own CRATE brews.
Exclusive Brewery Tour and Tasting with Meantime Brewmaster: A special one-off brewery tour and tasting, in partnership with Mr Hyde, saw none other than BrewMaster himself, Ciaran Giblin, take guests on a tour followed by an in depth tasting of some of their exclusive limited edition beers.