There is definitely something in the Hackney water right now, and I am pretty sure it is hops. After years of craft-beer nothingness, breweries and craft pubs are popping up faster than I can keep track of. One of the latest (but I am sure it’s old by this post comes out) is Hackney Wick’s Crate brewery, a brewpub situated in the White Building, a creative building of sorts that hosts exhibitions, events and has artists in residence. And as with any good brewpub started around creative types, the furniture in the bar is made from recycled pallets and malt sacks, and the space is stark in a nice, warehousey way. It was a beautiful day when we went which was convenient as Crate has maybe one of the best outdoor spaces of any bar in London, with a quiet and very spacious courtyard to chill out on right next to the canal (and also moments from the Olympic ground).
The IPA I tried from their onsite brewery was maybe not aimed at me, as I found it a little too tame on the hop front, but I have heard lots of positive comments about the beers they are producing currently, and their lager is supposed to be awesome. Their international bottle selection is also looking really promising. I had a Brewfist Spaceman IPA, and as it was an intensely warm day, indulged in a Maui Big Swell IPA which, from a cool can hits the refreshing nail on the sweltering head.
Crate is also a Pizzeria, serving some really interesting and tasty combinations such as potato, sage and truffle and middle eastern lamb. The pizzas reminded me of Story Deli in Shoreditch, which is most definitely a good association.
If it’s sunny outside, and you have a couple of hours to spare, get down to Crate and spend some time watching the canal boats while drinking some great brews and eating some great pizzas. There is definitely worse things you could be doing with your time.