Saturday 21 August 2021

A pub crawl in Hackney

The unfortunately plague situation made Continuing Professional Development difficult. So once lockdown eased I got in touch with the editor of the Journal of the Brewery History Society to organise a research trip. 

I set off to London early and was delighted to see people on the train drinking cider at 10am, it made my midday start seem positively restrained. 

I was heading up early so I could see an astonishing piece of artwork, The Silent Agitator by Ruth Ewan

An old illustration by Ralph Chaplin (who also wrote Solidarity Forever) has been turned into a large working clock.

The IWW has been growing again in recent years, including at British breweries, which lets face it is needed. So as the man said, time to organise, join the IWW

There was a slight hitch with the start of the main event as our first stop was shut. Though Hackney's part of a large city it seems this isn't enough to stop people having conjugal relations with close relatives when they should be opening pubs. 

So it was on to a tap room called The Experiment where I think for the first time this year I suckled from the devil's drainpipe.

The clear moral certainty I had in my youth is no longer there, as though the beer came from a keg I couldn't say for sure if it was evil or CAMRA kosher. 

I said an act of contrition and three Hail Protzes just to play it safe. Our next planned stop was also shut, once again showing the surprising popularity of inbreeding in Hackney. So it was on to the Hackney Church brewpub. Once more it was keg only. Thank Bakunin craft keg isn't a threat to cask beer. 

Flash looking kit but very modest brew length. 

As well as their own stuff they were also serving Kernel beers so we passed up our chance of brewpub beers. 

We next called in at the Brew Club tap room where I couldn't see anyone brewing or in fact any other punters. Still they had Bohem lager on keg which I was keen to try. 

Brewed by Czechs using Czech methods was this OK due to their heathen foreign brewing traditions? Or as it's brewed in Britain was it evil? As a man of simple faith I find such theological questions troubling. The beer was fine, but apparently is better when served from a proper Czech tap. 

There were no such problems at the Hackney Tap, as they had beer served as god intended.

One for the retro-fontologists

Only two beers on handpump mind, but as one of them was Landlord one would have been enough.

Lovely, lovely Landlord

Our next stop was The Pembury Tavern for Five Points beer. We had a couple here then ...

... it was, er, somewhere else. I think it was back to The Cock Tavern but all this research was fatiguing me as I was tired and emotional by this point. 

Anyway, we had at least another one in here. Well most of another one as I managed to knock my glass over. Definitely time to go home. 


  1. Was this a BHS trip? I don't think I got a note about it. )-: As it happens, I was in furrin parts and did manage two brewpub visits, nowt terribly exciting but fresh and decent.

    1. Nah, I was just meeting up with a mate from the BHS.

  2. We need more pub blogging where we can't remember what we had, or where we went. It's why I go to pubs.