article image

Hood Love, Christmas Presents, and Craft Beer Rising 2018

Written by Pete Brown

February 11th, 2018



Everyone keeps saying “January was the longest month ever”.  It happened so fast for us that we didn’t even realise it was halfway through February until now.  Probably because our 4-person team was crippled by the most WORK we’ve ever encountered to date perfectly coinciding with some unplanned last minute travels from Ian and myself.

but the WORK don’t stop.




In January my beer-loving pal Tom (@hackney_beer_wanker), Cassie and I got some timber and rebuilt the walls of the taproom.  Many splinters, a couple fake plants, and a minor electrocution later – the place now looks like a fuckin’ ski lodge sat in the middle of Hackney – which is great – because the only memories I have of ski-lodges are being with good pals, feeling cozy and excessive amounts of beer.  So it WORKed out in the end.   Then – probably more importantly – Julie and Siggy absolutely decked it out with plants and pictures and graffiti in the bathroom.  Come check it out if you already haven’t – Were right next to Netil House on 8 Netil Lane E8 3RL.  Look down our alley, theres a skateboard deck with our logo on it dangling above the door.


Warning – Its a hip-hop ridden wormhole that spits you out covered in craft beer and fuzzy memories.






I also finally got around to getting a Christmas present for myself and Ian – an Anton Paar Easy dens unit for measuring beer analyticals.  This is a super handy tool and here’s how it WORKS:

Its a handheld device with an integrated Peltier thermostat that automatically corrects sample temperature once the chamber is loaded.  After normalising the sample temperature to 20º Celsius it measures the density of the liquid.  A beer sample is degassed by one of our beer elves after shaking all of the dissolved carbon dioxide out.  Sample would be filtered as well if any sediment in it, but all of our beers are naturally clarified and we don’t package our beer with any murk particulate in it – this would not only clog the machine, but also give an inaccurate reading.


***This makes measuring the ABV of murky, sediment-riddled beers difficult if brewers are only measuring with a hydrometer – which can have a trickle down effect to the customer.  Brewers in the UK pay duty based on stated ABV%, so if someone says they produce a 9% beer, thats taxed at 9%, when really it could be 6% which affects the wholesale price – which effects the price per pint. Theres no government regulatory body currently monitoring the legal 0.5% variance allowed.***


The sample then passed through the ~1pm width measuring chamber, at which point the easy dens unit analyses the sample versus a H2O control standard reference.   Humans are smart – the density of H2O has been ‘zero-ed’ and therefore any abundance of molecules greater than this (speaking beer here, of course) equals sugar or carbohydrates (yeah we can measure calories too, if you’d like to confirm POSH lager has approximately 7 more calories than Heineken – dont get caught up in the hype) and like wise anything less dense than H20 (alcohol) can also be measured.

Once the easy dens calculated the amount of sugar (% w/w) and alcohol (% v/v) in the sample – it can WORK backwards to estimate the original extract.  I guess further digression is needed here:



Brewers extract sugar from barley and other sugar sources = Sugar / Carbohydrates

Brewers give extracted sugar to yeast, yeast’s biological role to turn sugar into alcohol, yeast ferments sugar = Alcohol


Fermentation by yeast is static and therefore measurable:

For every 1 mol glucose = 2 mol ethanol and 2 mol of carbon dioxide are produced


Brewers brew = Liquid with sugar density [X]

Post-fermentation by yeast = liquid with sugar density [Y]

[X] – [Y] =[Z] Amount of sugar consumed by Yeast



[Z] is translated into alcohol [A] by an equation involving all kinds of stuff you don’t care about, ideal gas laws, constant values etc. (V=\frac{nRT}{P}=\frac{(1 mol)(0.0821 \frac{atm*L}{mol*K})(273 K)}{1 atm}=22.41 L.)

And there you have it ladies and gentlemen.  BOOZE.


SO, if we take a degassed sample and calculate the amount of sugar density ([Y] from above) and alcohol ([A] from above) you can WORK backwards and estimate what the original sugar extract ([X] from above) was and there you have it.

These are important for my beers, because I like to make sure every brew hits its analytical targets within their variance windows.  In addition, we as a company like pay the right amount of duty on beer to the UK government –  – as they already take WAY TOO FUCKING MUCH compared to any other beer making country in the world except for like countries where you can’t even drink at all if you’re caught you’ll be put in prison for life.




We have a fucking cool machine for measuring beer analyticals and we don’t even have a brewery yet.  This is for us, but 3rd party lab analysis is expensive and time consuming, so if any other London breweries would like to send their beers to us we will happily measure for you and give you results, because I remember what it was like wanting to do the right thing, but being limited by the boss’s agenda not considering the cost/ providing the budget for doing things right.






As it’s tradition, we were officially the last brewery to get around to filling out the online document to allow us to be at Craft Beer Rising this year (Sorry Chris and Sarah xoxo).  But as it’s tradition – we made it!  This is one of our absolute favourite (the ou is for you UK) London beer festivals and it was the first one we were ever at, in February 2016 with the first batch of beer that we ever made – this makes it our sort of anniversary festival.  Last year we dropped a black ale you may have heard of called PITCH, and this year we are launching yet another.  (And I’ll give you a hint – although this is the most anticipated beer launch in the history of brewing in London, ever – it’s not unfiltered London Pride.)

Our pals at CBR have also agreed to let us bring our beer-pong table this year – so get ready for some classic FR house-party fun.  Tom and I are prototyping our new festival bar which includes a not one, but two stripper poles, a salt-water fish tank and a petrol-powered blender for margaritas for when the beer runs out.

If you haven’t already, check out the festival and GET YOUR TICKETS HERE: (




Were launching 2 new beers in the next 3 months.  We’ve also locked up 8 barrels of a very secret, never been done before collaboration with a VERY special brewery.

Also stay tuned for the launch of our collaboration beer with Alex Kratena and my bestest beer friend Andy down at the PARTY ZAN.  Our excessive bar-hopping, dark-and-stormy and heavy rum consumption during 2016 will finally pay off.  We made a fuckin’ big beer – details of exclusive launch to come.