Hey Durham, how’s the beginning of 2016 been?
Been great, still hearing from friends and guests how good our NYE party went! Was bloody awesome if I do say so myself!
Any New Year Resolutions? Say no to shots?
Open a bottle shop.
Are you attempting a dry January?
Fuck no, it's too late already.
What made you want to get into beer?
I worked with Nigel Owen from Mother Kelly’s and The Queens Head. We had many conversations about the beer scene late after work (and many hangovers the next day). The beer scene in London wasn’t up to scratch compared to the US. Especially in cocktail bars and michelin star restaurants. We often wondered why chefs and operators would put so much effort into their food and wine offering and then a wash out beer list with Peroni or Heineken.
How much time do you spend tinkering downstairs in your microbrewery?
Once a week on Saturdays. Less in Summer, I feel like I’m missing out so we try and get in at 7am so we can enjoy the sunshine.
What are your favourite small/craft London-made beers?
I can’t say no to a Five Points pale ale, I don’t drink lager anymore.
Which beer do we absolutely have to try in 2016?
Saison Dupont - it still is and always will be the king of Saisons.
The Hops & Glory
Aside from your own excellent pub, do you have any must-visit beer bar recommendations in London?
Yes the Southampton Arms in Kentish Town
Where do you drink on a night off?
Sager + Wilde on Hackney road (Mike still has got great beers available to accompany his wine offering), Rita’s on Mare street for some chicken wings and a Margarita.
What’s your favourite beer and food pairing?
Beer ice Cream, try it - sounds awful but works really well.
What’s your favourite beer and whiskey pairing?
Redbreast 12yo and a Signature pale ale winter ale.
Do you have a current favourite beer or style?
Yes it's IPAs, which the book Hops & Glory by Pete Brown is all about and named after.
What’s the most unusual beer you’ve tried?
Geuze - any of it - its weird and I don’t get it. I do have a sweet palate though which probably has a lot to do with it.
What’s your guilty beer pleasure?
I don’t feel guilty about any beer I drink these days - but Camden Pale ale is always on the cards which some might think I should feel guilty about - I don’t for the record.
What’s your thoughts on Hop-Tails?
Its great to see two passions of mine coming together. My mate Ali Reynolds created the Hops & Glory cocktail at Hawksmoor in our honour with Kernel IPA syrup, Hop gin, Cocchi Americano and lemon juice. Tastes amazing.
What’s the thing you’re most looking forward to in 2016?
Australia Day - our biggest day of the year here - we’ll have (probably) the only beer garden BBQ firing away in a cold January! Starting our monthly 'The Brewers Dinner’ night which will see a brewer from London matching beer with food as a (sort of) supper club for only 20 persons and ‘Saisons Greetings’ which I like to think of as Christmas coming early where we takeover the taps with Saisons in May to bring on the beginning of Summer.