It’s a hybrid of a beer festival and market, and jolly good too. Old Spitalfields Market is one a of a zillion cool venues around London now and the Brewers’ Market is held in conjunction with the Independent Label Market. Music and beer, you won’t find DS of Chelmsford here.
You get all sorts here from the ‘have you got anything similar to Stella Artois?’ types (correct answer, ‘no, it’s all much better than that’) through ink sleeved Hackney hipsters to professional beer geeks (no, not me). It was also an event for my Meet-up chums of the Craft Beer Collective.
There was a nice selection of beer from some of London’s finest but the best thing about this event is the stalls are manned by the brewers so you can have a pleasant chat with them over a beer – and then buy more to take home. What’s not to like? (Ed: Overused phrase?).
Favourite beers? You won’t normally see much about lager on these pages so let’s start off with Signature Brew’s Unfiltered Vienna Lager. Vienna lagers have more malt character and this one is also unfiltered. Most intriguingly there is a hint of smoke, which I always loveWe are talking flavour. This is still a beautiful refreshing drink but not bland, fizzy and tasteless. Signature Brew’s schtick is beer/music collaborations (I don’t understand them, but hey ho, if the beer is good…) and so you will see something remarkably similar under the Doctor’s Orders label too.
Best beer on show (imho, natch) was Crate Brewery’s collaboration with the Norwegians called Imperial Stout vs Nøgne Ø. 8.3% of thick, heavy treacle, roasty, toasty dreaminess as my companion put it. “Apart from pizza the best thing Crate have been involved with” was another comment.
Also on show and selling well were the Beavertown cans, Hop Stuff’s new Arsenal Pale Ale, new By The Horns offerings such as Bastard Brag and Sour to the People and Windsor & Eton’s Republika lager. There, two mentions of lager in one piece.
Jaded with ordinary beer festivals? Want to drink and take home too? This is the place for you. Check when the next will be.
Beer selection: 7.5/10
Beer quality: 8/10
A good night out: 8/10
Total score: 39/50, 78%