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LONDON | London’s Bermondsey Beer Mile started off with one brewery, The Kernel Brewery back in 2009 and has since expanded to include a number of breweries and a bottle shop along a stretch of Bermondsey that is not exactly just a mile any more (the name originated when the distance between the craft breweries in the area was about a mile).

Most of the breweries in the area only open on a Saturday as tap rooms – unlike a lot of breweries which are only for show, with the majority of brewing happing elsewhere, the breweries on the Bermondsey Beer Mile are the real deal – this is where all of the brewing actually happens.

A lot of guides covering the Bermondsey Beer Mile start at the opposite end of the list but with the excellent Maltby Street/Ropewalk Market being located just around the corner from the Southwark Brewing Company, we like the idea of starting at this end, getting a good feed from some of London’s best food vendors, and then continuing along the mile.

I was in London recently and took on the onerous task of “researching” each and every one of the breweries along the Bermondsey Beer Mile. Here’s what I thought.

Southwark Brewing Company

Starting at the Southwark Brewing Company, you get a perfect introduction to the ad hoc atmosphere that awaits you on the journey ahead. Located in a railway arch close to London Bridge, Southwark Brewing Company is a newcomer to this part of town, having opened in 2014. The speciality here is cask ales, which is different than most of the breweries on the Bermondsey Beer mile who specialise in the IPAs, APAs, sours, saisons, porters etc that are popular amongst craft breweries around the world.

As with the other breweries on the Bermondsey Beer Mile, the brewing equipment is right there for everyone to see. There’s a small bar to one side where the cask ale is poured and ample standing space along with couches and tables. being the UK, you can also stand on the pavement outside and enjoy your drink while watching the world go by – enjoyable even in the middle of winter (rain permitting of course!).

I was a big fan of the Bermondsey Best, a great example of a traditional English ale. The hoppy Golden Ale, made using a blend of American and English hops was another great brew.

bermondsey beer mile london guide map

Southwark Brewing Company

46 Druid Street
London SE1 2EZ
United Kingdom

Telephone: 020 3302 4190
Email: info@southwarkbrewing.co.uk
Website: http://southwarkbrewing.co.uk/

Open
Sat: 11:00am to 5:00pm

Southwark Brewing Company on Urbanspoon

Anspach & Hobday / Bullfinch Brewery

Paul Anspach & Jack Hobday had been experimenting with home brews before opening Aspach & Hobday in 2014. After receiving a lot of good feedback from various people about the beers they were brewing at home, most notably their porter, they set up a Kickstarter campaign in order to raise enough funds to open up a brewery for real. They got the money they needed and, after teaming up with another newcomer, Bullfinch Brewery who were interested in sharing the space, the brewery was born.

While a variety of beer styles are on offer here, it’s when these breweries are playing to their strengths that the real highlights can be found. There was some real passion from the people I spoke to at the brewery and when it comes to Anspach & Hobday, their signature porter is a great example of a classic porter with undertones of coffee, chocolate and fruit cake all present. I was also a big fan of the smoked brown which is still undergoing tweaks to get the balance just right. For Bullfinch, it’s all about the hoppier end of the scale, with their IPA being particularly tasty.

bermondsey beer mile london guide map

Anspach & Hobday / Bullfinch Brewery

118 Druid Street
London. SE1 2HH
United Kingdom

Telephone: 0208 617 9510
Email: hello@anspachandhobday.com
Website: http://anspachandhobday.com/

Open
Fri: 5:00pm to 9:30pm
Sat: 11:00am to 6:00pm
Sat: 12:00am to 5:00pm

Aspach & Hobday / Bullfinch Brewery on Urbanspoon

The Bottle Shop

The Bottle Shop is… well do I really have to say it? The concept is really simple – along with 2 or 3 beers on tap, there are over 200 local and international bottled beers available in the fridges for visitors to purchase and either take away or drink on site. I really enjoyed the upstairs area which had a cozy feel about it and a very comfortable couch! I quite enjoyed chilling out while drinking my Popperipossa, a sour cherry stout collaboration from the Derbyshire’s Buxton Brewery and Stockholm’s Omnipollo.

bermondsey beer mile london guide map

The Bottle Shop

128 Druid Street
London, SE1 2HH
United Kingdom

Telephone: 020 3490 9252
Email: SE1@bottle-shop.co.uk
Website: http://bottle-shop.co.uk/

Open
Sat: 10:00am to 6:00pm

Bottle Shop on Urbanspoon

Brew By Numbers

Moving on to the more “classic” part of the Bermondsey Beer Mile (and by classic I mean circa 2013), you hit Brew By Numbers. These guys are doing some really great craft beers and were one of my favourite discoveries during my recent trip to London. Dave Seymour and Tom Hutchings started Brew By Numbers in 2012 and quickly outgrew their original site due to the popularity of their beers. They’ve been at the current site since 2013 and demand for their beers is showing no sign of abating.

The branding of the beer is very well done and I loved the labels, which identify each beer by style and recipe. The best beers at Brew By Numbers in my opinion are the saisons and witbeers, with a variety of hop and flavour combinations being offered across the 6 taps and bottles on a given day. Highlights on the day I visited were the 0110 Classic Saison and the 0703 Elderflower & Lime Witbeer.

bermondsey beer mile london guide map

Brew By Numbers

79 Enid Street
London SE16 3RA
United Kingdom

Telephone: 020 7237 9794
Email: info@brewbynumbers.com
Website: http://brewbynumbers.com/

Open
Sat: 10:00am to 5:00pm

Brew By Numbers on Urbanspoon

The Kernel Brewery

Established in 2009 by homebrewer Evin O’Riordain, The Kernel Brewery is the granddaddy of the breweries on the Bermondsey Beer Mile. IPAs and pale ales with a focus on upfront hop flavours are where Kernel excels and I really enjoyed how several of their beers were actually the same beer just brewed with different hops. It’s not until you sample a few beers brewed like this one after the other that you really appreciate just how much of an effect on flavour using different hops can have on beers that are, in every other way, identical.

There are 8 beers on tap, along with a range of bottles and, along with the IPAs and pale ales, Kernel always offers brown ales and porters too. The highlight for me at Kernel really was the fact that I gained a better appreciation of the differences in the types of hops that are commonly used in craft brewing.

Just be aware to take particular note of the closing time for Kernel, which is 2pm. This isn’t ideal given that it’s in the middle of the Bermondsey Beer Mile but it’s something you need to factor into your plans.

bermondsey beer mile london guide map

The Kernel Brewery

Arch 11, Dockley Road Industrial Estate
London SE16 3SF
United Kingdom

Telephone: 020 7231 4516
Email: contact@thekernelbrewery.com
Website: http://thekernelbrewery.com/

Open
Sat: 9:00am to 2:00pm

Kernel Brewery on Urbanspoon

Partizan Brewing

Partizan Brewing is one of the smallest of the breweries on the Bermondsey Beer Mile but don’t let their size put you off – head brewer Andy Smith is producing some seriously good beer using the old kit that Kernel outgrew when they expanded. As I mentioned, the place is tiny so you’re going to be standing outside for this one but this isn’t a bad thing as it’s got a really good, local atmosphere about it.

Beer wise there are a number of styles on offer with Partizan focusing more on uniqueness rather than any particular style. Think a Christmas stout with aged for 6 months in oak barrels breweed with sour cherries, spices and Brettanomyces, or a cuvee lemon saison. Great stuff.

bermondsey beer mile london guide map

Partizan Brewing

8 Almond Road
London SE16 3LR
United Kingdom

Telephone: 020 8127 5053
Email: info@partizanbrewing.co.uk
Website: http://partizanbrewing.co.uk

Open
Sat: 11:00am to 5:00pm

Partizan Brewing on Urbanspoon

Fourpure Brewing Co.

The final stop on the Bermondsey Beer Mile is Fourpure, a family brewery established in 2013. Nothing experimental going on here, just a core range of beers spanning a range of styles, brewed with care and respect to the 4 core ingredients of beer. This is not a bad thing as the beers I tried at Fourpure were all really tasty – especially their Oatmeal Stout.

The atmosphere at Fourpure is really nice too. You are quite literally drinking in the middle of the brewery and nobody can have any complaints about the ping pong table that’s free for all to play on either! Down this end of the Bermondsey Beer Mile, your closest train station is South Bermondsey and, unlike the other breweries, this one is located in a warehouse rather than a rail arch.

bermondsey beer mile london guide map

Fourpure Brewing Co.

22 Bermondsey Trading Estate
Rotherhithe New Road,
London SE16 3LL
United Kingdom

Telephone: 020 7231 9763
Email: info@fourpure.com
Website: http://fourpure.com/

Open
Sat: 11:00am to 5:00pm

Fourpure Brewing Co on Urbanspoon

EeBria Taproom

A recent addition to Bermondsey Beer Mile that’s opened since this guide was first written is EeBria Taproom. These guys work with over 100 breweries in the UK and abroad and serve a range of these breweries’ beers in keg, can and bottle every Saturday. The taproom is designed to help people drink fresh beer from excellent breweries of all sizes and has an ever changing beer selection that has featured UK mainstays like Buxton, Moor, Cloudwater and Fyne, tiny breweries like Northern Alchemy, Deya and Fallen, and every kind of craft brewery in between. The EeBria Taproom also hosts regular tap takeovers and meet the brewer events and boasts free air hockey and shuffleboard to play whilst you enjoy your beers and a beer garden at the back of the railway arch.

bermondsey beer mile london guide map

EeBria Taproom

15 Almond Road
London SE16 3LR
United Kingdom

Telephone: n/a
Email: taproom@eebria.com
Website: http://eebria.com/

Open
Sat: 11:00am to 5:00pm

Mother Kelly’s

Okay, Mother Kelly’s isn’t part of the Bermondsey Beer Mile. In fact, it’s not even in Bermondsey but when I did the Bermondsey Beer Mile for the first time this is the place I ended up at in the evening and, since those of you who have gotten this far into this guide are clearly interested in craft beer, I thought it only fair that I let you know about this gem.

Mother Kelly’s is a New York inspired bottle shop and Tap Room in Bethnal Green is one of the best craft beer venues I’ve been to anywhere in the world. 19 out of the 23 taps are devoted to craft beer from around the world and, if you feel like something that’s not on tap, there are hundreds of beers spanning every style and country imaginable across 6 quite large fridges. You can drink the bottled beers either on site or take them away to drink at your own pleasure. Really impressive stuff. Consider it a bonus, and thank me later.

mother kelly's bermondsey beer mile london guide map

Mother Kelly’s

251 Paradise Row,
London E2 9LE
United Kingdom

Telephone: 020 7012 1244
Email: nellie@motherkellys.co.uk
Website: http://motherkellys.co.uk/

Open
Mon: 4:00pm to 11:00pm
Tues – Thu: 12:00pm to 11:00pm
Fri – Sat: 12:00pm to 12:00pm
Sun: 12:00pm – 11:00pm

Mother Kelly's on Urbanspoon


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4 Comments

  1. Spenno
    28 October, 2015 at 2:33 AM — Reply

    Heard the Kernel have closed their taproom?! Say it ain’t so…

    • 29 October, 2015 at 12:25 AM — Reply

      It would appear so. Hopefully they open something bigger and better soon!

  2. 23 September, 2015 at 2:29 AM — Reply

    There’s also a new taproom just opened up between Partizan and Fourpure – EeBria.com have been serving beer at 15 Almond Road (a few doors down from Partizan) for the last few weeks.

    We’re an online craft alcohol marketplace so we have a variety of beers available in both keg and bottle from lots of the fantastic breweries we work with across the UK. We also have a lovely beer garden at the back of the taproom, which is great for having a drink when/if the sun is out…

    Almond Road has also been extended recently, so it’s now possible to get from Partizan to Fourpure even quicker, via the EeBria taproom!

    • 23 September, 2015 at 8:48 AM — Reply

      Sounds great Chris. Always happy to hear about new spots in the area.

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