This year for our Christmas outing we decided to do something a little different and travelled up to London in search of a some good food and a few beers. And with a plethora of new breweries to choose, we thought we would keep it close and head to the Bermondsey beer mile. Images of Crocodile Dundee come to mind.
Another reason for keeping it close to London Bridge (other than trying not to get lost) was the history of the old hop exchange building. A grade II listed building, located on Southwark Street opened in 1867 for the purpose of being the centre of all hop trading in the UK brewing industry. Something that sadly has been lost in this day and age, and changed to offices. We managed to get a sneak peek inside and take a couple of quick pictures before we were promptly chucked out. After this little history lesson we headed to borough market for some sustenance in the form of a burger and beer.
From borough market we then headed to the Fourpure brewery taproom, to sample what they had to offer. With an Earl Grey IPA and their famous Juicebox in our glasses we had a lovely conversation with the bar manager about the American hop usage of the brewery, and blamed his hangover when he disregarded British hops in front of us.
From there we went on to UBREW, a wonderful concept in the heart of London. They allow homebrewers to come use their facilities to brew and also provide tutorials and lessons in brewing. They also have a tap room onsite selling these small batch beers and allowed us to sample some which went down very well indeed.
After a lengthy chat, we then went on our merry way to Hiver Beers. A wonderful concept where beers are brewed using honey sourced from the urban bee keepers of London which really comes through in the beers. The Brown ale was a clear favourite, with a massive honey hit a smooth finish, if anyone’s struggling to buy us a Christmas present this year a few bottles of this would go down nicely.
After a quick stop at borough market it was time to return to Kent and back home to the farm, where I think it’s safe to say the majority of us feel slightly more comfortable.
From all at Hukins Hops, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year