The Italian Job Craft Beers.
The Italian Craft beer scene is a relative newcomer to craft beer revolution. Wine has always been pre-eminent in Italy for obvious reasons, but beer has many advantages when it comes to food pairing, and the Italians, of course, are renowned for their food. The Italian Job pub has taken the step of creating 3 venues where Italian craft beer can be obtained and sampled with tasty Italian food also. Starting out in a small but perfectly formed pub in Chiswick they expanded into a Notting Hill venue and now the superbly vibrant Mercato Metropolitano close to Elephant and Castle in SE1.
Mercato Metropolitano is a large venue with a real buzz to it, with a sizeable collection of small local and Italian producers of food, drink and sustainable products. Interestingly our visit took me back to old memories of my childhood and visiting covered markets with my mother. It’s a laudable concept, and one I sincerely hope will grow and spread in time.
Nestled amongst all the hubbub is the Italian Job Pub bar, with no less than 16 taps of draught beer, and many bottles and cans also available. We were invited along as guests to a tap takeover by local brewery Orbit Beers. Orbit’s brewery is located just a short hop, skip and a jump away in railway arches just off the Walworth road. Orbit has been in existence since 2014 and has taken a path of brewing excellent examples of traditional European beers. Those beers have in some cases been slightly forgotten in the rush to experiment and try all the different things that can be done in craft brewing, but they hold a special place in brewing history, and the craft beer movement is just beginning to take a look back and re-imagine some of those superb older styles.
The evening was hosted by Orbit, with one of the brewers taking us through each of the beers. Alongside each beer was a choice of delectable Italian street-style snack foods. We enjoyed a whole range of beers ranging from Belgian ales through German Kolsch lagers, to porters, and a few of Orbit’s white label series of seasonal releases.
Returning back to Italian beer, the Italian job Pubs are probably the best source in London to begin sampling what Italy has to offer. Dependant on the venue you will find between 12 and 16 taps of Italian beer. That’s not to be sniffed at! Italy might be considered to be a little behind in the craft beer revolution, but underestimating the Italian’s abilities in food and drink would be a foolish undertaking. Whilst France may be seen as the top of the pile in wine, the Italians have been making wine for a very long time, and it seems they are applying the same skill now to beer. The combination of Italian food and drink as offered by the Italian Job pubs is a slam-dunk really for a quality epicurean experience.
Also offered are plenty of events at the various venues. Check the website for what’s coming up.
If anything of Italian heritage interests you in the way of food or drink, then I’d urge you to check out the Italian Job’s pubs and venues. You won’t find a more authentic Italian experience that combines itself in a truly modern manner with the best of what London can offer.
The Italian Job Pub has three venues details of which can be found on their website.
Orbit brewery can be found at www.orbitbeers.com
For more quirky beer offerings in the area, try Borough Market’s own home-grown and home-brewed beer.