Here’s some news to make you thirsty: it’s International Beer Day on Friday Aug 4. We’re told it’s a day for beer lovers around the world to raise a toast to their favourite fermented tipple. But actually, this whole month is worth drinking to if you’re in London and fancy yourself as a bit of a hophead. Check out these great insider tips to celebrate some quality quaffing in the capital.
1. Tap takeovers, tours and general beer geekery at London Beer City
First up, there’s London Beer City. It kicks off tonight (Thu Aug 3) and comprises over 100 beery events across ten days in many of the capital’s best bars and pubs. Highlights include a tap takeover from New York brewery Other Half at new Stokey pub The Axe and beer expert Des de Moor’s walking tour taking in London’s brewing heritage. All events should help confirm London as the most beery city of all. Find out more at www.londonbeercity.com.
2. Hip hops at London Craft Beer Festival
They’re calling it a carnival of beer. What’s not to love about that? Head on down to Hoxton Square’s Electric Light Station this weekend (Aug 4-6) for over 45 breweries showing off their frothy wares in among DJ sets from the likes of Hot Chip and Foals. Some Friday evening and Sunday afternoon tickets for £42.50 are still available and act as ‘all in’ tickets, so you can sample all the artisan beer you can handle without forking out any further. Find out more at www.londoncraftbeerfestival.co.uk.
3. Free pints at some proper pubs for National Pub Fortnight
Craft beer what? It’s nearing the end of National Pub Fortnight, the inaugural celebration of the Great British boozer. To encourage people to get down to their local, free pints are on offer at a litter of lovably rough-around-the-edges pubs until Sun Aug 6, including King Edward VII in Stratford, The Oxford Arms in Camden and The British Oak in Blackheath. Visit www.freedrinkoffer.co.uk to find out how to redeem yours.
4. The big four-oh for the Great British Beer Festival
While London Craft Beer Festival is turning five, Camra’s Great British Beer Festival is celebrating 40 years on the scene. Think of it as the daddy of beer fests. It’s old school for sure, but you’ll get to sample cask ales and ciders from producers around the country and chow down on no-nonsense beer fodder like West Country sausages and farmhouse cheeses. If you’re missing the modern trappings, they’re branching out with an area for English wines this year. La-di-da. Find out more at www.gbbf.org.uk.