I bought our Early Bird Tickets for this year’s event and it’s only appropriate to blog about it now (I know, almost 5 months later. Guilty!).
London Craft Beer Festival is about to host its’ FIFTH event, doesn’t seem like a lot but in a culture of pops and daily trends, it’s quite an achievement. Last 4 events were hosted at Oval in Bethnal Green but the guys obviously outgrew themselves and LCBF 2017 will be hosted at a new home: National Centre for Circus Arts in Hoxton Sq. It’s meant to be a bigger better venue which will host more Brewers and I really hope more food.
Last year was a blast with 40 Breweries attending and 287 beers being poured (I checked the stats!) A ticket to a festival gets you a branded glass and unlimited 100ml samples from the Brewers. And when I say unlimited, I really mean unlimited! You might think 100 ml isn’t a lot, but trust me it’s just the right amount.
London Craft Beer Festival attracts not just UK Breweries but also some international guests, just to list a few: Siren Craft Brew, Thornbridge Brewery, Wiper and True Brewing Co, The Gipsy Hill Brewing, Tillmans Biere, Sierra Nevada and lots more! Each Brewery brings 2-3 different beers to try, normally a selection of nice Pale Ales, IPA’s and heavier darker Porters and Stouts.
My top tip for attending ANY beer festival is EAT, eating is definitely not cheating and your body will thank you for it the next day. This year we had a huge breakfast before we took off and snacked throughout the day, keeping hydrated will also help as you won’t get too drunk too soon and once again, the hangover will be much gentler. Another tip, DO NOT start with Breakfast Stouts and Porters, ease yourself in with session IPA’s and light ales, save the heavy guns for the end of the day.
LCBF also provides entertainment during the day, last year we listened to DJ Yoda and that same year they had The Cuban Brothers (if you don’t know, check them out!). Unfortunately, this year we were in the first session so there was no entertainment but I am sure with a new bigger venue next year will be full of surprises.
I also love the crowd at LCBF, having been to a CAMRA beer festival once LCBF feels like home, with a great mix of young and old you come across different groups – couples, friends, children bringing their parents to learn more about craft beer.
But anyway the main purpose of the festival is for you try new beers and find some new favourites, so here are some of my favourites from this year. I wish I could add more but honestly after a couple of hours, it all gets a bit hazy.
- Double Chocolate Coffee Toffee Vanilla Milk Porter by Howling Hops, definitely a tongue twister. It’s rich and heavy like a dessert in a glass, malty toffee flavour comes through first followed by roasted coffee and chocolate aftertaste. I think I spent last hour of the festival going back for a top up of this because I knew my headache will be worth it. Bottle of this delight comes at £2.79 and you can get them from here.
- Big Chief by Redemption Brewing Company – I don’t normally like citrus flavours in my beers but this one is smoothed by a surprising addition of kiwi. Bottle of this comes at £3.10 from here.
- Caribbean Chocolate Cake by Siren Craft Brewery, once again it’s a rich creamy stout that is almost a liquid cake in a glass. Approach with caution as it’s 7.4% ABV, not the cheapest of them all either at £4.89 a bottle from here.
London Craft Beer Festival, as always it’s been a pleasure and see you next year! If you want to find out more or book your ticket, click here.