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bars ¥ drink
For the hipster Pelt Trader
Dowgate Hill (opposite Skinners Hall), EC4N 6AP;
020 7160 0253; pelttrader.co.uk
If your vision of a City pub is dark wood and handpumps, then
Pelt Trader might come as a bit of a shock. This is less a pub than
a cavern underneath Cannon Street Station, but it has its charms
nonetheless (including a canoe stuck to the ceiling).
A key attraction is the quality and price of the beer, undoubtedly
one of the reasons it has become so popular with London's growing
breed of beer acionados. It's now
attracting a growing number of
those who work in the area, too,
according to manager Mark Hazell.
'We get a real mix, including
plenty of people who work
in The City,' he says. 'It's really satisfying seeing their gradual
transformation from generic lager to König Pils [a German lager
that is Pelt Trader's bestseller] to Camden Pale Ale to Kernel Pale
Ale. It's really nice to see their tastes develop.'
What to drink Lagunitas IPA. This Californian import is bitter,
resinous and deeply moreish; £5/pint.
For the glutton Draft House, Seething
14-15 Seething Lane, EC3N 4AX; 020 70975140; drafthouse.co.uk
The Draft House chain is known not only for ne beer but for the
sort of menu that might have been dreamed up by a 12-year-boy:
huge burgers, foot-long pork scratchings and 'Monster' hot dogs.
But while the food may be intimidating, the sta� are not. Manager
JJ Wintle says: 'When we hire people, we don't want them to be beer
snobs. There are some places where if someone walks in and asks
for a pint of Foster's, the barman will turn their nose up. But people
don't know the di�erence;
it's a chance to give them
The Draft House, then,
is a good place to go if you
want a pint of high-quality
lager (everything from the much-loved Czech classic Budvar to
Munich's Paulaner to Cornish Pilsner, made by Sharp's) - and if
you want something a little more challenging, that's available,
too. 'People like the eclectic selection we've got,' adds Wintle.
What to drink Camden Pale Ale. Expect grapefruit bitterness
and a clean, crisp aftertaste; £4.75/pint.
PELT TRADER PICS: thomasbowles.com
IN LONDON, THE PAST FIVE YEARS HAS SEEN
AN EXPLOSION IN THE NUMBER OF BREWERIES
Here and below: the brass taps of the Pelt Trader
No room for beer snobs: The Draft House
Pump it up: The Old Red Cow