Taste London: Part One

On Thursday evening I popped along to Taste London, courtesy of Pilsner Urquell. Obviously I was excited: Beer? Check. Food? Check. Michel Roux Junior? CHECK CHECK CHECK. Love me a bit of Roux.

Taste London runs (or ran) from 18th-22nd June in Regent’s Park. We had standard tickets, which meant entry to the festival, but we had to buy additional ‘crowns’ in order to purchase food and drink. One crown is the equivalent of one pound and, as you can imagine, some of the Michelin starred foods were nearing 10 crowns. Yes, ten crowns. Ten crowns for a scallop. But then, I wasn’t there for the scallops, I was there for the beer! Tank beer, no less. The Pilsner Urquell set up was particularly impressive with the enormous tanks piled up in the centre of the island bar. Off to the side was an additional bar where Vaclav Berka, Brewmaster, was on hand to help the punters pour their own pints. 

This, my friends, is a thing of beauty. Crisp, refreshing and clean, Pilsner Urquell tank beer is up there with some of the best beer I’ve ever tasted. With every sip you can feel the quality. You can get your hands on some from here if you’re a Londoner. 

Once I’d exhausted the tanks (joking…) I went on the hunt for more brews and stumbled upon the Meantime van. 

Of course I went straight for the Californian, their limited edition pale ale.

Look at the colour of that! It was absolutely bursting with tropical fruits- pineapple, mango and passion fruits- to be honest I could have just sniffed it all day. The fruity taste was really complemented by a sweet maltiness that finished in a burst of bitterness. Honestly, it was like they took all of my favourite things, mixed them all together and created this. Does the Meantime Brewery bar do growlers yet? I need litres of this in my life!

I’ll leave you for now with this bath of St. Stefanus, one of the beers that started me on my journey of craft beer. Fruity, malty and creamy, it’s big on flavour and this, below, is the dream.

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