There's been a lot of exciting new developments on the West Kent brewing scene over the last 18 months or so. I had other concerns during this time and unfortunately many of these developments passed me by, but as I begin to recover from my annus horriblis I'm taking note of what has occurred so that once I'm firmly back in the saddle I know which new beers to look out for.
Westerham Brewery, who started operations back in 2004. Apart from the addition of a blonde summer ale, Larkins beer range has changed little over the years. The beers are full bodied, with plenty of crystal malt used in the grist. They are also well-hopped, as one would expect from a Kentish beer. Westerham, on the other hand, brew a wide range of seasonal beers in addition to their distinctive core brands, some of which are based on recipes from the original Westerham Brewery which ceased brewing in 1965. New last year were a range of continental style beers, including examples from Germany, Belgium and the Czech Republic.
Black Cat Brewery, based in Groombridge right on the Kent-Sussex border, and Kent Brewery, based at Birling, a short hop from West Malling, both of which are new on the scene, but I have tried some of the beers brewed by Moodleys, Royal Tunbridge Wells and Tonbridge breweries, all of whom started operations a couple of years ago. All of these new breweries offer a wide range of interesting beers, but rather than me attempt to describe them , why not click on the links
and check out the brewery websites concerned. Unfortunately, Larkins don't have a website, but all the other breweries listed do.
Cider and perry festivals - All CAMRA beer festivals have a cider and perry bar where you can taste proper ciders that don't resemble Woodpecker or Strongbow in the slightest, and you...