We will never get tired of London. There is just too much craft beer to discover apart from all the familiar attractions the City has to offer. So here we go again, another long week-end spent exploring craft beer bars in London. Our usual hideouts and a few first timers. Some are worth a mention.

Earl of Essex

Absolutely packed on a Friday evening, we luckily managed to get a table and enjoyed some fine pints of Real Ale. Earl of Essex is a brewpub – home to Earl’s Brewery – located in Islington. They have 18 taps pouring, 5 of them on cask, with a solid selection of local and international beers. In addition, there is also a beer garden at the back. Definitely on our go-back list.   

Mother Kelly’s

After visiting Broadway Market, stop by Mother Kelly’s singular location in Bethnal Green. You will find it right under one of the converted railway arches of Paradise Row. The place feels modern, a spacious tunnel-shape room with wooden furniture and walls covered with bright graffiti. The bar is in the back, with 23 taps lined up of independent breweries from all over the world. If that’s not enough, there are 6 huge fridges with every style of beer imaginable to drink onsite or take away. Do not miss it.

The Cock Tavern

If you are into Real Ale, head straight to The Cock Tavern on Mare St, near Hackney Central. The place was cramped on Saturday night. Everyone standing, conversations flowing and people laughing loudly. Here, you will find more than 20 lines of craft beers, real ale and ciders available – 16 of them are hand pumps. Lots of stuff from Howling Hops and other guests breweries. A true english pub.

BBNº & Cloudwater Taprooms – Bermondsey Beer Mile

Located under the railway arches on Enid Street, you will find the Brew By Numbers and Cloudwater taprooms – and plenty more! Without knowing and to our pleasant surprise, we found ourselves on what is known as the Bermondsey Beer Mile. It’s a loose combination of craft beer breweries, their bars, taprooms and bottle shops, all located along the same stretch that nowadays runs for two miles. Best time to visit is on Saturday afternoon, when all venues are open for your perfect pub crawl. There is no official website but check out this one if you are planning your visit.

We stopped by the BBNº tasting room. It is mostly a standing space, all in wood, with little furniture or decoration. The actual brewery is a couple doors further down and there is also a smaller taproom there. Both spaces have about 8 beers on tap and sometimes some beers on cask.

After a couple beers, we checked out next door which turned out to be the Cloudwater taproom. There is no name listed on the front and you will only know you are in the right place by peeking inside and spotting their logo on the wall inside. The decor is minimalistic, with a nordic vibe going on. They offer 20 beers on tap in “hip” ⅓ glasses. Prices are a bit higher, but they focus on the stronger DIPA beers.

Old Fountain

Lastly, we finished our trip at Old Fountain, a traditional pub run by the same family for 50 years. They now focus on craft beer and offer an extensive selection. You can choose from 8 real ales and 9 craft kegs in rotation. The staff is super friendly and will help you out. They also have a charming terrace at the back, perfect for the sunny days.


Hope you get the chance to try out some of these spots and enjoy the beer as we did. Thank you London for the excellent craft beer scene and see you next year!