Drink Guides

London’s Best Breweries

Londoners are a thirsty lot, especially when it comes to craft beer, and it shows because the city is packed with breweries, from the industrial estates of North London to the Bermondsey Beer Mile and lots of places in between. There’s 40FT, a brewery housed in two repurposed 20ft shipping containers in Dalston, which has also added a dedicated taproom (with both cosy indoor seating inside plus outdoor benches if you’re lucky with the weather) to their container collection.

South London brewery Toast rescues wasted bread and turns it into award-winning craft beer. Their planet-friendly line up features a citrusy IPA, a bloody delicious craft lager and our fave of them all, a tropical American pale ale. Little Creatures has made the journey all the way from down under, bringing their hoppy beers to King’s Cross with a light bright industrial space right by the canal. Mondo, founded by two Americans, has a brewery and taproom just a few yards from Battersea Power Station and they regularly collab with their transatlantic pals to create beer for all occasions. Basically London is overflowing with great beer. CHEERS.


If you don’t like a lot of hops – and we mean oodles of it – in your beer, look away now. This brewery was born out of a love of hoppy beer, which saw it make the gigantic leap from its hometown in Fremantle, Western Australia, all the way to our very own King’s Cross. Good thing for thirsty Londoners, because the beer is pretty darn tasty. There’s a Pale Ale, a Bright Ale (subtle malt flavours with a fruity hop aroma), Pilsner, IPA, Rogers’ Beer (hop flowers and toasted malts) and Dog Days (a Session Ale that’ll see you through the hottest, muggiest of days). Speaking of the hottest, muggiest days, there’s no better place to see them out than at Little Creatures’ brewpub on the Regent’s Canal: a light, industrial space right by the water.


Beavertown and craft beer are pretty much synonymous – so much so that Beavertown is practically a household name. And with beers that are as distinctive as their branding, it’s no surprise they’re often the beer aficionado’s go-to. Neck Oil is almost as common as tap water these days, and that’s because it’s Tasty with a capital T. The brewery has Tottenham origins, so this is where you’ll have to go to visit the taproom, an essential stop on the Tottenham Beer Mile (which is good enough to rival the Bermondsey Beer Mile, if you’re asking). It’s got lots of indoor seating, an upstairs space with a full view of the brewery, a fully covered outside drinking area, and most importantly, eleven taps of the good stuff. Only open on Saturdays and Sundays.


55-59 Wilkin Street Mews, London NW5 3NN

No prizes for guessing where Camden Town Brewery makes its beer. Well, actually, if you want to get technical, it has a larger brewery in Enfield these days… But we digress. The Camden town site offers brewery tours, and it also hosts food pop-ups, complete with a sun-drenched terrace just designed for day drinking all the Camden classics: Helles, Pale, Off-Menu, Week Nite and the juicy Show Off lager. The location is home to Arch 55, too, the brewery’s selection of small batch, new idea beers. Basically, this is where you need to park yourself in summer. Fact.


From the logo all the way through to the names and flavours of the beers, Brixton Brewery is a product of the South London neighbourhood it’s named after. The Electric IPA is named for Electric Avenue, its taste designed to be an assault on the senses – much like a trip to the street itself. Coldharbour Lager takes its name from Coldharbour Lane, a street known for its boho origins – reflected in a lively, easy-drinking lager. And as you’d expect, Brixton Brewery’s taproom sits in the very heart of the area, under the railway arches. Because where else would you put a brewery in London?


Back in 2013 these guys were brewing from a back garden in Hackney and now they up in Tottenham producing a whopping 10,000 litres of the good stuff every week. It’s My Party & I’ll Cry If I Want To is more than a song title because it’s name of their maple coconut and chocolate stout, a great bev to see in the weekend with. It’s sweet, salty and definitely a bit naughty. We also love the Alligator Tugboat, a West Coast-style IPA with a label inspired by the East London streets. Talk about a winning combo. Pressure Drop is making waves in the industry and we’re here for it.


Five Points brews its beer in East London, and has a stable of East London pubs to match. The Pembury Tavern is an absolute classic – with some of London’s best pizza (shhh it’s our secret) from Ace on the menu to boot – while the Mare Street Tap Room (in the yard at Five Points’ warehouse) is the ideal spot for summer sipping. Which is lucky, because it isn’t open in winter. The brewery has a two sister pubs in Leeds, too. Leeds! Who care about Leeds? We’re more interested in Five Points’ beers, which are pretty dang good. The Pale and the XPA are the most commonly found in the wild, but the brewery has much more up its sleeve: a Railway Porter, a Best, a JUPA, a Micro Pale and more.


The main thing you need to know about Crate is that it does brilliant beer. But it also has a brilliant canalside location on the River Lea, a vibey space where you can also get absolutely banging pizzas. What’s even better is that you can head on over across Queen’s Yard to Colour Factory for a full-on food market, or for fancy wining and dining, you’ve also got SIlo in the space above the brewery. Basically, Crate is your one-stop shop for a food-forward night out. And now back to the beers: the brewery does all the usual culprits, and pretty well, too. We’re big fans of both the Citra Sour and the Cider. OK, OK, so it’s not a beer, but it’s worth it, OK?


209 Blenheim Grove, London SE15 4RX

Brick Brewery started out in a garden shed but its beers rapidly became so popular that it had to find a much bigger space, sharpish. Today it has a taproom in Peckham with a whopping 20 lines of both Brick’s own and guest brews. Don’t drink them all at once, kids. Brick’s brews are inspired by beers around the world, whether that’s Czech-style lagers, West Coast pales and much, much more. The brewery has its three staple beers: Pils, Pale, Rye, and then it brews a selection of seasonal and experimental beers that’ll keep just about any hophead happy.


Depending on which direction you go in, an escapade along the infamous Bermondsey Beer Mile either starts or ends in Fourpure’s taproom. And both options are pretty darn great – especially if you sling one of Oh My Dog!’s hotdogs down your neck while you’re there. We’d pair them with Fourpure’s juicy Easy Peeler citrus session IPA, a seriously easy drinker that saw us through summer in the park. But no matter what you fancy you’re well-catered for here, from the sturdy Basecamp pilsner to the dark and flavourful Last Train oatmeal stout. For something a bit more left-field, look to Fourpure’s Pioneer beers, which are a bit more experimental. Our favourite is the Peach State peach sour, made with 200kg of surplus bread from fellow brewery Toast. So the more you drink, the more food you’re saving from waste. We’ll take two.


Without The Kernel, the Bermondsey Beer Mile wouldn’t be a thing. This is the OG brewery, the Godfather of London’s craft beer scene, and the maker of single-batch pale ale as well as old school London Porters. Kernel’s super-low-abv Table Beer is one of their most popular and rightly so, but their Pils Pacifica and Foeder Beer slide down nicely too. On top of that, there’s a swanky two-level taproom just a few doors down from the brewery, so if you’re wandering down South, this is where you wanna stop for a bev or two.


Gipsy Hill brewery – based in, erm, Gipsy Hill – have three core principles that thread through everything they do: quality, innovation and community. They’re evident in the top-notch beers and the fact that the brewery still operates out of the space in which it started, choosing to focus on the brews themselves rather than their output. You might know the brewery for Hepcat – their gluggable best seller – but they’ve got heaps of small-batch beers too. From Urbanist, an Imperial fruited sour made with honeyberries (yum), to Propeller, a peppery rye saison, everything they create is painstakingly put together. And this is a brewery that really cares – their on-site taproom is fully accessible, with a lower bar for people in wheelchairs and other touches that make them stand out from the crowd.


Howling Hops opened Hackney’s first brewpub, The Cock Tavern on Mare Street, back in 2011. And that’s a claim to fame if we ever heard one (the pub also went on to win an award for its pickled eggs). Their motto is ‘brew interesting beer’, and this is exactly what they do, with unfiltered, unpasteurised, vegan brews. Howling Hops lists no less than 80 brews on their website, and that’s just the most recent releases. But before you take a deep dive into this almost never-ending list, the brews you need to look out for are the Tropical Deluxe and House IPA, which are the ones you’ll probably find most often around London – and for good reason, as they’re both deeeelicious. For a wider selection, head to Howling Hops’ Tank Bar in Hackney Wick, where you’ll get to try the brewery’s beer fresh from the tank. Thirst quenching.


Meantime was born & bred in a Greenwich flat over twenty years ago and they’re still crafting beer from alongside the River Thames but in a much swankier tap room. Their first brew, the Union Lager, hit the taps back in 2000 and us Londoners still can’t get enough of it. Since then they’ve introduced us to the likes of tropical IPAs; lively ales that fuse British and German malts; a modern lager straight from London’s back garden; and not forgetting the cheeky Chocolate Porter too, but you’ll always find us raising a bottle of the signature London Pale Ale.


From humble beginnings of brewing on an industrial estate to serving up award-winning beers from their two taprooms in Walthamstow (not to mention plenty of other places across the city too) Wild Card was a hobby that got way out of hand, but we’re so glad that it did. Their wide range of beers include a 5.8% Cashmere IPA that’s double dry hopped, a Lime Berliner Weisse that’s got a hefty squeeze of citrus, and a pale ale that makes for easy drinking. They’ve also got low-and-no options but we only want the hard stuff.


Two Tribes Brewery was born from a love of celebrating creativity and so they pump up the volume alongside the banging brews. The taproom is equipped with decks and a Funktion One sound system, as well as brewtech, matching a great taste in beer with stellar tunes. After a couple of cans of the full-bodied Electric Circus, you’re ready to throw some shapes. It’s punchy. And did we mention they design their own artwork too? Two Tribes is a beer culture you wanna be a part of.


This Bermondsey-based micro-brewery are all about diversity, identity and heritage (that’s why they called themselves Partizan) and they produce funky flavours inspired by culture and community. The Passionberry Citra Sour is a fusion of Ethiopian passion berries and Citra hops which is slowly fermented for a delicate but punchy pint. The Lemongrass Saison is as refreshing as they come, but our hero of them all is their hearty pale ale. It’s sessionable and moreish, and the perfect brew to drink at their taproom on Saturdays.


40FT is an independent brewery based in Dalston and the lovechild of four East London friends. This neighbourhood fave started brewing back in 2015 from two repurposed 20ft shipping containers, but London was thirsty for their brews and so they added a dedicated taproom (with both cosy indoor seating inside the containers which have been done out with wooden floors and tables, plus outdoor benches if you’re lucky with the weather) to their container collection. Their Hazy Pale Ale was brewed for Dalston Roof Park and this is exactly where we recommend it is drunk, but the Late Night Disco IPA and Deepest 10.5% Stout are also great thirst quenchers.


This East London microbrewery opened up back in 2016, and now they’ve got their own taproom and bottle shop right next to Wanstead Heath. They offer a pretty wide range of beer, including a Milkshake IPA (packed with passionfruit, pineapple and fruity hops), a New England Pale Ale with a hazy finish (especially after your fourth or fifth can) and a Helles Lager that’s made for sipping in the sunshine. And for every pint, keg, can and bottle these guys sell, they donate to charity – so you can literally feel pretty good about being a Pretty Decent drinker.


Let’s raise a toast to drinking beer and saving the planet at the same time. That’s right, this South London brewery rescues wasted bread and turns it into award-winning craft beer. Their planet-friendly line up features a citrusy IPA, a bloody delicious craft lager and our fave of them all, a tropical American pale ale. They’re here to create change and that’s something we can cheers too. Beer brewed with bread, chin chin.


Villages is two brothers brewing beer, bringing people together to do things that bring people together. Confused? Their words, not ours. Basically, they are two good guys brewing good beer from their brewery in Deptford. They are the makers of sessionable and seasonable crafts; our go-to regular is the WHISTLE lager but the RAFIKI IPA comes in close at second place. Their taproom is where we want to be on a sunny London eve, sipping on fresh beer and feasting on Jamaican food from Buster Mantis.


Mondo was founded by two Americans but these guys were thirsty for London, so it’s American-inspired, British-brewed vibes all round. The brewery and taproom is just a few yards from Battersea Power Station and they regularly collab with their transatlantic pals to create beer for all occasions. Their Dennis Hopp’r best seller is light and malty, whilst the Tone Float is a hazy IPA with an adult ABV. There’s plenty of other corkers too with seasonal specials released each month. Get ready for a proper sesh.


KRAFT Dalston is now open at the new Kingsland Locke hotel and if you like your beer super fresh (and who doesn’t) then it doesn’t get much fresher than this. With an onsite microbrewery, there are several tanks on the basement level brewing different styles of tasty German beer which are then fed right up to tanks behind the bar, ready to pour into fresh, crisp pints and into your hand. Not only are these fantastic tasting beers, it’s also a very sustainable way of doing things with no canning, bottling, or transport necessary to get these beers into your glass. And as you’ll be no doubt be putting away a fair few pints once you’ve got started here, you will of course need some good drinking food – and luckily the boys at Le Bab are on hand with a brilliant menu of modern kebabs and mezze to see you through the night.