Sunday, 6 August 2017

Fuller's & Friends at the Cask Yard

Pic: Fuller's
By all accounts, “The Cask Yard” at this weekend’s London Craft Beer Festival has been a great success. As last year, it’s presented and anchored by Fuller’s but features others too – not just cask ale from Sierra Nevada (Fuller’s distributes SN beer in the UK) but also the likes of Redemption, Thornbridge and Wimbledon.

It’s quite a change from the first LCBF events when there was cask, but nowhere near as prominently. Given the major part real ale plays in London brewing, a big cask presence is entirely fitting – no, entirely necessary!

It’s also been the first public outing for a project I heard about in confidence a few weeks ago – Fuller’s & Friends. Fuller’s brewers have been working with colleagues from around the country on a new set of collaboration brews. So far we’ve seen four of what I’m told will be six beers:

#1 – Flora & The Griffin, a 7.4% rye ale, collaboration with Thornbridge.

#2 – Rebirth, 6% “the original 1971 ESB reborn”, a collaboration with Moor Beer.

#3 – Big Smoke, a 7% smoked Porter with Hardknott.

#4 – Matariki, a 5.5% New Zealand Saison with Marble.

Two more to come, then – possibly during today’s final LCBF session. Sadly, I’ve neither a ticket nor the time to get over there this afternoon, but I’m hoping and expecting that all will also be on draught at this week’s Great British Beer Festival. My information is they will then be bottled and sold as a six-pack.

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

London, the Beer City

The 2017 London Beer City programme, or festival, or whatever you want to call it, kicks off tomorrow, with events all over the city for the next 10 days.

The anchor events are of course CAMRA's huge Great British Beer Festival from Tues 8th to Sat 12th. As usual this is mainly British real ale, but with the addition of foreign real ale and bottled beers, plus English wines and ciders.

Before that though, there's the London Craft Beer Festival from Fri 4th to Sun 6th in Shoreditch - this is a smaller event but more focused, with 45 breweries, many of them bringing new brews and serving them themselves.

A new thing this year (at least, I think it's new) is the beer embassies. Hosted at various venues around the city they will show off some of the best beers - both modern and trad - from elsewhere, for example the USA, Germany and Scandinavia. There's also a load of collaborative brews and other new beers around, including a competition where each of London's top beer stores collaborated with a local brewer on a brew.

For the full programme pick up a printed copy (as seen here) from one of the venues, or visit the London Beer City website.