I attended the Five Points tap takeover at Brewdog Shoreditch last night, which was part of London Beer City – a “week-long, city-wide festival celebrating London’s beer renaissance”. Steve from The Beer O’clock Show was my drinking buddy and as I arrived he was playing the long game, sipping a half pint of Dead Pony Club so as not to peak too soon. London Beer City has come at the wrong time for me as I have neither the finances or time to take full advantage of it; as Emma from Crema Brewery suggested in a recent tweet, perhaps it should become a national holiday. I decided to prioritise this particular event as I’m a fan of Five Points and because Brewdog Shoreditch is close to my work. Some may call that lazy, I prefer to call it focused.
It has often occurred to me that Five Points don’t elicit the same reverence or even adulation that some breweries do, perhaps as they’re not seen as being sufficiently experimental. But I view the fact they have eschewed the scatter-gun approach and concentrated on getting their core range right as a positive. The consistency of their beer whether it’s from cask, keg or bottle suggests to me that quality control is very important at Five Points.
The takeover was due to commence at 7pm* but at 6:55 Steve and I decided we’d waited long enough and got a flight each, containing the Pale, Railway Porter, Hook Island Red and the new addition to the core range, the IPA. There was still no sign of the Five Points crew, who were winging their way from Great British Beer Festival in Olympia. If London Beer City is demanding for punters, I can’t imagine how hectic it must be for the breweries.
Five points excel at social media with a regular newsletter via email and a very active twitter account, however in person they have some work to do based on last night’s event. The format wasn’t very clear, and when founder Ed brought some samples to our table they were withdrawn once it was established that I had already sampled a flight. Maybe this was down to confusion, or perhaps the priority was to reach out to new fans but it would have been great to talk to Ed about the rationale behind their beers and the philosophy of the brewery (don’t worry Boak and Bailey, I wasn’t after an autograph). That said there was nothing to stop me approaching Ed but then I’m not what you would call the outgoing type. You can see what I think about Five Points core range here, but it’s worth stating that Steve rates the IPA highly, and regularly commits craft blasphemy by comparing it to Magic Rock Brewing’s Cannonball. In any case, he managed to set up an interview for his podcast to take place at a later date and we battered through some more beers, making it a thoroughly enjoyable, London Beer City-themed Craft Tuesday.
* As with the Stone “Enjoy By” release a megaphone was produced to herald the commencement of proceedings. Note to BDSD – it’s slightlly awkward and doesn’t really work…