Dive Into London’s Brewing Tradition With Sambrook's Brewery
An honest to goodness, award-winning beer from Sambrook's Brewery and what goes behind perfecting it.
The South-West London brewery is keeping brewing tradition alive in the British capital. Mark Kelly talks to us about Sambrook’s role in the revival of the London brewing culture, creating a winning brew and working with a brewing legend.
When Sambrook’s got started in 2008, the London brewing scene wasn’t particularly healthy. Young’s, the stalwart of South-West London, moved out of its historic brewery in 2006, following Truman’s, Courage, Charrington, Whitbread, and other great names of London brewing. Fuller’s battled on in Chiswick, meantime was striving to revive South-East London’s brewing tradition. There were a handful of brewpubs, and that was about it. One of the world’s great brewing cities was down on its luck, to say the least.
A lot has changed since then. The city boasts more than 100 breweries, and beer is everywhere. Sambrook’s - under the leadership of founder Duncan Sambrook - has played its own role in this revival, although for them it’s been less about American hops and experimental barrel-aged ales and more about finding the best in the British tradition.
It’s appropriate, then, that their Russian Imperial Stout, a style which was first brewed at Barclay Perkins on the South Bank in the heyday of London’s porter brewers, won a Gold Award at the London Beer Competition this year - the year in which Sambrook’s home will move from an industrial unit in Battersea up-river to the former home of Young’s, in the heart of Wandsworth. It’s a tremendous coup; we spoke to Mark Kelly, the brewery’s 34-year-old sales and marketing manager, to find out more.