Thirteen hours from home, the team from Moncada Brewery in North West London touch down on the runway in Buenos Aires, Argentina for 9 days of collaboration brews and to take their Notting Hill branded beers to Cerveza Extremas; a 2-day beer festival celebrating extreme beer hosted by Juguetes Perdidos.
Not quite fresh from an overnight flight, the team hot foot it to their hosts for the day, Gorilla Brewing, who have blazed a trail in the Argentinian craft beer scene with sours and saisons accompanying their core range, which features a well-loved London Red Ale. The intention of today’s brew is to attempt to recreate Moncada Breweries award-winning and extremely popular Vanilla Custard Imperial Stout, or Impy Custard for short. Thick, viscous and black with aromas of traditional Custard, this 10.4% abv beer packs a punch and is the perfect dessert accompaniment. Now to recreate it on another continent, in another hemisphere!
First drafts need a little tweaking, as the malt mash just isn’t dark enough, and the brew needs to reach the mighty 10.4% to realistically replicate the Impy Custard of home, so more dark malts go into the kettle for a long brew day, whilst the team sit back and sip on Mate, a South American high caffeinated tea drink sucked through a bomba, a metal straw. A well-received tonic, after 2 days on the road with little or no sleep this pep provided a vital revival to the Moncada Brewery team.
Whilst the beer boils and brews, other guests, arrive and set up a traditional Argentinian Asadso, a whole side of fine Argentinian cow is prepped to slowly barbeque over smoking coals. Beer TV, a much followed digital TV station in South American arrive to document the event, that quickly turns into a showcase of each other’s beers, with the Moncada brew team whipping out several bottles of their limited edition barrel aged beers ; Ned, a comedically titled Flanders Red Ale and woody two shoes both prove popular. On show from Gorilla brewing is their awesome Caipi Sour and Berliner Weiss which are set to shine at the Extreme beer festival in a few days. With the beer brewed and copious amount of meat eaten, it’s time to hit the town and conduct some vital market research at Buenos Aires finest craft beer bars.
The rest of the week is taken up with preparations for the Cervezas Extremas, or extreme beer festival, which is to be held in a football stadium to the North of Buenos Aires. 2,000 people a day crammed into an exhibition hall, a marquee and onto the football pitch to try 600 beers from 40 brewers around the world; Moncada Brewery and Brew Dog being the only 2 from the UK. Beers are served in 150ml goblets, owing to the high strengths of some of the beers on offer, which include the first outing of Moncada’s Amber Sour ale and Floorshaker, a 6,2% West Coast IPA brewed in London.
Upon return to London, it’s not long before the Gorilla Brewing team make their way to Moncada Brewery and tap room to brew a German Style Weiss beer. Another long brew ensues, and the resulting beer is now fermenting, which is set for release direct from the brewery or through Eebria online wholesale from 1st August. Brewing starts early, as Ramiro from Gorilla Brewing has a flight to catch late afternoon, and there are multiple stages, boil temperatures and malt additions to go into this brew day. Once fermented and conditioned this German Style Wheat beer, that currently smells and looks like a banana smoothie, will settle at 5% and be available in both can and keg.
Moncada’s legendary Impy Custard is now available all year round in the UK, as well as a seasonal special in Argentina. The core Notting Hill cask, bottle and keg range is available all year. This summer 3 new beers will be launched including a fruit salad DIPA, a Kolsch and a collaboration Wheat Beer brewed with Gorilla Brewing of Argentina.
Author – Nigel Tarn
Photo credit – Ryan Evans Photography
We are now open every Friday evening and every Saturday afternoon. Throughout the summer we have a series of events in our taproom to make sure that beer is only one great thing we have for our visitors.
6th July we have a pub quiz on, starting from 4:30 pm. No minimum or maximum team sizes and £2 entry per person. Winners get the jackpot and there also will be some beer going as a consolation prize for the second best.
13th July we are bringing a taste of US of A to the taproom with some excellent beers from The Mad Yank brewery. A couple of tried and tested recipes but also very special new releases will go on our bar from midday! We will also have Greg and Larissa from The Mad Yank Brewery with us from 4 pm who will run a series of beer tasting sessions.
An amazing young artist, Amy Scott, featured illustrations sketched in our brewery and taproom in her degree project at Middlesex University this year. She and some of her excellent colleagues are now bringing some of their beautiful pieces to be exhibited in our taproom. The opening day of our exhibition is 20th July with the young artists eager to meet you from 4 pm.
Finally, last Saturday of the month, we are launching our acoustic live music nights. We will have performances after 5 pm. If you’d like to perform, please get in touch as it is an open mic night!
Roll on summer!!
Encouraged by our lovely taproom regulars we decided to reach out to the beer community when looking for ideas for a new Blueprint Series brew. London Amateur Brewers, a great group of keen home brewers, are developing some very special original recipes for new beers. Despite putting ‘amateur’ in their name, the group members are highly competent. Many of them are becoming certified beer judges and a few went on to set up professional breweries! They will be with us on a weekend of 5th and 6th April brewing a few different beers on site on various types of home brewing kits. Our mezzanine will allow a great overhead view of brewers in action. Any visitors to the taproom on either of the days will also be able to approach brewers to have a closer look or ask questions about the brewing process, their equipment or a beer they are brewing. The bar will be fully open on both days with some delicious pies also being served to keep us all going.
But that will hardly be the end of this affair! When the beers are ready, we will be showcasing them in our taproom. Everyone will be invited to come in, taste them all and cast a vote in favour of their personal favourites. We will then take the winning recipe and the brewer behind it, and make it our new Blueprint Series beer! So, whether you want to learn more about brewing or have an input in what beer will be our next seasonal brew, come along and enjoy yourself. Become a part of Moncada Brewery history!
To mark The International Women’s Day this year we are running a charity pub quiz in our taproom as part of CARE International UK event. The idea is that the same quiz will be played in various venues around the country raising money for and awareness of CARE’s work. We will not have a traditional quizmaster. A bunch of celebrities are working hard recording video with questions to bring a more special feel to the night. Some names include Jamelia, Michelle Collins, Konnie Huq and Michaela Strachan.
As International Women’s Day aligns with our usual taproom opening, we will host it on 8th March from 7 pm. Each quizzer will be charged £3 to enter, however bigger donations are obviously welcome (all of this money goes to CARE). We welcome teams of 2 to 6 people. All quizzers can also expect a special treat on the bar; a small thank you for their support.
Money from the night will be supporting CARE work in empowering girls and women around the world
. CARE identified that girls and women are most affected by poverty precisely because they lack control over their lives and often don’t have equal rights. Lifting them out of poverty is particularly important as they are likely to be bringing other people, like family members, out of hardship. International Women’s Day is a fantastic occasion for us to celebrate all the positive aspects of women’s empowerment in London and show support for less fortunate girls and women in developing countries.
So join us to celebrate with a beer a some good old quizzing on a Friday night. Delicious food on throughout the day and the evening will be provided by lovely ladies behind Barbe-Kew’s
I moved over to the UK in 2003, having grown up in South Africa. I grew up thinking that I loved beer. I always ended my day with a Windhoek or a Hansa Pilsner, I was aiming high. Those were the “premium” lagers. I had discovered international beers at a few pubs in Cape Town during the 90s. These beers were few and far between. We had a small smattering of microbreweries in South Africa, but they were very few and scarce, and cask beer was unheard of. Castle was on draught, along with the other SAB offerings; the ales we could get from Mitchell’s, for example, were all bottled beers.
I moved to the UK and promptly went through the lager offerings at the corner shops, also something new as you can only buy beer in South Africa in a bottle store, or off licence, and the offerings were huge. I found some Ales and that led me to a pub where I had a cask. I can’t remember what it was, but it blew me away. And that was that.
After a long interval of work and life, I had fallen out of love with my job and into a love affair with ale. I quit my job and went to work for Twickenham Fine Ales, where we only racked cask. 100% cask, nothing else.
Cask beer is alive, it is unfiltered and unpasteurised, the yeast is still active. The beer is racked into the cask with a bit of priming sugar and a small amount of finings. This is where I think a lot of controversies comes in. Many brewers still use isinglass to clarify their beers with, this cuts out a huge segment of people who are either vegan or vegetarian. We never used finings as we wanted everyone to enjoy our beers with us. Lack of isinglass creates a haze in beer, which for some people is still unacceptable, for me not so. I love cask beer, I don’t mind the haze, if it’s an unfined beer. Refraining from fining and leaving sediment can, paradoxically, improve the flavour of beer thanks to not stripping it of some of the protein and hop particles. Not to mention that it can help it sustain its body and mouthfeel.
Cask beer needs looking after. One must treat it with respect. Cask beer is meant to be drunk fresh, once the cask is opened it needs to be served quickly. It starts oxidising and losing its carbonation in a blink of an eye. Moncada Notting Hill cask beers are amazing. We do our cask well. We treat it with care and attention it deserves. We encourage our customers in pubs to show the same amount of love for our casks and casks in general. We still don’t use isinglass, our beers are still vegan and vegetarian-friendly, slightly hazy and full of flavour.
I love good cask ale. Partially because I know of the sweat and tears that went into that pint. I know how back-breaking it feels to be cleaning casks for 3 days running. I also know of the effort made by the publican to condition the cask, to have racked it and tapped it and got it the glass in perfect condition.
Article by Raph Basan, Brewer
I met Stefan from Haand Bygerriet in Norway at their tap takeover at Micro Beers in East Sheen. After a night of drinking and talking about beers, Stefan said we should brew a beer together. Both teams soon were very excited about the new endeavour. After a lengthy discussion on email, imperial stout was decided upon and the planning began.
Brewing an imperial stout on our brewhouse requires two mashing runs.
We start our first mash at the break of dawn and transfer that to our lauter. Then comes the sparge and transferring of the wort to the kettle. After, we crush the remaining malt and get the process started all over again. The lauter needs emptying and rinsing before we can transfer the second mash to it though. This means a full all hands on deck job with everyone involved.
We had everything prepared and Ole Richard Lund came over from Haand Bygerriet to help us on the day. Julio had already got the smoker in and loaded it up. An imperial stout brew day is a long one and it inevitably involves everyone in the brewery. We are a small team and when these big days come about, we all work together. You’re guaranteed two things on these days; a long day and a feast to break it apart or end it. Smoking meat accompanying extended brew days is a tradition at Moncada. This time we broke the day up. We had a great meal and then all fuelled up we headed back to finish the transfer, boil and finally get the beer into the fermenter.
Once we had done this, we naturally all sat down on the brew floor on a fold up table and chairs and proceeded to raise a glass to a successful day. Ole had brought their beers and he sampled ours. That’s when he tasted our Impy Custard Stout and insisted that we do something similar with our collaboration. That’s how the inspiration for Big Ole Beer Horchata Imperial Stout was born.
The day was great fun. The one complaint we all had, not enough time, not enough beers. Next time we promise to have more of both for Ole.
Article by Raph Basan, Brewer
Beer name – Craft Buck
Beer style – Grape kettle sour
Beer description – Together we brewed a kettle sour inspired by Buckfast Tonic Wine, brewed to the Flemish Red style. Loads of grapes mixed with lactic acid resulting on this refreshing, juicy and smooth kettle sour. Like Buckfast, this beer disguises its strength with layers of grapey awesomeness and effervescent sourness. “To help you cope with life’s little ups and downs”. (warning: contains lactose!)
Photo credit – Ryan Evans Photography
As you might be aware, we have moved from our beloved Notting Hill home to a much bigger site in Dollis Hill. We are keen to use this extra space not only for production but also to have some fun. The first big event we would like to bring to our new brewery and our new neighbourhood will be a small beer festival. As there are very few craft beer events in North West London, we thought it would be great to bring some amazing beers to this part of town. And we would love to have you involved!
Try a crocodile or ostrich burger from Black Star Kitchen. and if you feel like all the excitement drained a bit too much of your energy, you can grab a caffeine fix from Cricklewood Coffee
Our neighbours Glassbusters will prove that recycling can be exciting and DJs Dr Flamingo and Darkman are bringing on some funky tones to please your ears.
Now, the only thing missing to have an unforgettable day is good company (yes, we’re looking at you!)
Looking for a place that shows World Cup and pours a great beer? Look no more! We will be showing all of the World Cup games in our taproom. Book a table or simply pop in, we’ll provide the rest.
We’ll have food trucks on Friday’s and Saturday’s but happy for you to order in food any other day.
JUNE TAPROOM OPENING TIMES WORLD CUP GAMES Thursday 14th 3pm – 6.30pm Russia v Saudi Arabia (Group A) – Moscow (Luzhniki), 4pm Friday 15th 12.30pm – 11pm Egypt v Uruguay (Group A) – Ekaterinburg, 1pm
Morocco v Iran (Group B) – St Petersburg, 4pm
Portugal v Spain (Group B) – Sochi, 7pm
Saturday 16th 10.30am – 9pm France v Australia (Group C) – Kazan, 11am
Argentina v Iceland (Group D) – Moscow (Spartak), 2pm
Peru v Denmark (Group C) – Saransk, 5pm
Croatia v Nigeria (Group D) – Kaliningrad, 8pm
Sunday 17th 12.30pm – 9pm Costa Rica v Serbia (Group E) – Samara, 1pm
Germany v Mexico (Group F) – Moscow (Luzhniki), 4pm
Brazil v Switzerland (Group E) – Rostov-on-Don, 7pm
Monday 18th 12.30pm – 9pm Sweden v South Korea (Group F) – Nizhny Novgorod, 1pm
Belgium v Panama (Group G) – Sochi, 4pm
Tunisia v England (Group G) – Volgograd, 7pm
Tuesday 19th 12.30pm – 9pm Colombia v Japan (Group H) – Saransk, 1pm
Poland v Senegal (Group H) – Moscow (Spartak), 4pm
Russia v Egypt (Group A) – St Petersburg, 7pm
Wednesday 20th 12.30pm – 9pm Portugal v Morocco (Group B) – Moscow (Luzhniki), 1pm
Uruguay v Saudi Arabia (Group A) – Rostov-on-Don, 4pm
Iran v Spain (Group B) – Kazan, 7pm
Thursday 21st 12.30pm – 9pm Denmark v Australia (Group C) – Samara, 1pm
France v Peru (Group C) – Ekaterinburg, 4pm
Argentina v Croatia (Group D) – Nizhny Novgorod, 7pm
Friday 22nd 12.30pm – 11pm Brazil v Costa Rica (Group E) – St Petersburg, 1pm
Nigeria v Iceland (Group D) – Volgograd, 4pm
Serbia v Switzerland (Group E) – Kaliningrad, 7pm
Saturday 23rd 12pm – 9pm Belgium v Tunisia (Group G) – Moscow (Spartak), 1pm
South Korea v Mexico (Group F) – Rostov-on-Don, 4pm
Germany v Sweden (Group F) – Sochi, 7pm
Sunday 24th 12.30pm – 9pm England v Panama (Group G) – Nizhny Novgorod, 1pm
Japan v Senegal (Group H) – Ekaterinburg, 4pm
Poland v Colombia (Group H) – Kazan, 7pm
Monday 25th 2.30pm – 9pm Uruguay v Russia (Group A) – Samara, 3pm
Saudi Arabia v Egypt (Group A) – Volgograd, 3pm
Spain v Morocco (Group B) – Kaliningrad, 7pm
Iran v Portugal (Group B) – Saransk, 7pm
Tuesday 26th 2.30pm – 9pm Denmark v France (Group C) – Moscow (Luzhniki), 3pm
Australia v Peru (Group C) – Sochi, 3pm
Nigeria v Argentina (Group D) – St Petersburg, 7pm
Iceland v Croatia (Group D) – Rostov-on-Don, 7pm
Wednesday 27th 2.30pm – 9pm South Korea v Germany (Group F) – Kazan, 3pm
Mexico v Sweden (Group F) – Ekaterinburg, 3pm
Serbia v Brazil (Group E) – Moscow (Spartak), 7pm
Switzerland v Costa Rica (Group E) – Nizhny Novgorod, 7pm
Thursday 28th 2.30pm – 9pm Japan v Poland (Group H) – Volgograd, 3pm
Senegal v Colombia (Group H) – Samara, 3pm
England v Belgium (Group G) – Kaliningrad, 7pm
Panama v Tunisia (Group G) – Saransk, 7pm
Friday 29th 5pm – 11pm TAPROOM AS NORMAL. Saturday 30th 12pm – 9pm 1C v 2D – Kazan, 3pm (Match 50)
1A v 2B – Sochi, 7pm (Match 49)
JULY Sunday 1st 2.30pm – 9pm 1B v 2A – Moscow (Luzhniki), 3pm (Match 51)
1D v 2C – Nizhny Novgorod, 7pm (Match 52)
Monday 2nd 2.30pm – 9pm 1E v 2F – Samara, 3pm (Match 53)
1G v 2H – Rostov-on-Don, 7pm (Match 54)
Tuesday 3rd 2.30pm – 9pm 1F v 2E – St Petersburg 3pm (Match 55)
1H v 2G – Moscow (Spartak), 7pm (Match 56)
Friday 6th 2.30pm – 11pm QUARTER-FINALS
Winner match 49 v Winner match 50 – Nizhny Novgorod, 3pm (Match 57)
Winner match 53 v Winner match 54 – Kazan, 7pm (Match 58)
Saurday 7th 12pm – 9pm Winner match 55 v Winner match 56 – Samara, 3pm (Match 60)
Winner match 51 v Winner match 52 – Sochi, 7pm (Match 59)
Tuesday 10th 6.30pm – 9pm SEMI-FINALS
Winner match 57 v Winner match 58 – St Petersburg, 7pm
Wednesday 11th 6.30pm – 9pm Winner match 59 v Winner match 60 – Moscow (Luzhniki), 7pm Friday 13th 5pm – 11pm TAPROOM AS NORMAL. Saturday 14th 12pm – 9pm THIRD-PLACE PLAY-OFF
St Petersburg, 3pm
Sunday 15th 3pm – 7pm FINAL
Moscow (Luzhniki), 4pm
We are delighted to announce our first residency at the CRAFTNDRAFT bottle shop in Hackney for the whole month of May.
We will kick it off with a meet the brewer and exclusive tasting of the newest, extra fresh West Coast IPA (and some other brews on the side). On the night we will also be pouring Moncada on draft to give you a wide range of beers to try. The icing on the cake will be a raffle, prizes including a brewery tour and some merch for you to take home and love.
During their month of residency, you will be able to fill a growler with one of three beers on draft or stock up on bottles and cans to take and enjoy wherever you fancy.