The Hidden Hammerton Microbrewery

Written by: Emmie Harrison

Picture this. It’s Friday. It’s the end of the month, you’re skint and you’ve just battled the throngs of Facetiming sociopaths on the overground.

You need a drink, but you live on Caledonian Road. Nearby you’ve got that e-sports bar where there’s regular Xbox tournaments. You could buy a £6 bottle of Black Tower, but you remember drinking alone isn’t socially acceptable (for now).

Until you see it: ‘Taproom open!’ That fabled blackboard perched in a hidden alleyway by Caledonian Road and Barnsbury station. Situated sneakily off Offord Street between Japanese knotweed and an old paint centre – blink and you miss it.

Still thirsty.

North Four, North London magazine, Hammerton Brewery, beer, hops, casks, pints, drinks

Hammerton Brewery is a microbrewery based in Islington, resurrected in 2014. With a colourful history dating back to 1868, it sadly closed its doors in the 1950s. But thankfully, it’s bringing small-batch beer brewing back to this quirky borough with a vengeance.

You may have seen their dinky bottles of N1 pale ale and N7 IPA on sale for a hefty £3 in the Co-op. But by god it’s worth it. Twice award winner at the SIBA National Beer Competition and SIBA South East & London Awards, the least they could do was open their doors to us worshippers.

On the last Friday and Saturday of every month, the taproom opens to one and all in the evenings. With only a small space available squeezed between their mountains of beer bottles and barrels in their open warehouse, the taproom is minimal but mighty. The finishing touches are definitely the old tin signs with the original logo decorating the walls, as you perch on a Bierkeller-style rickety bench.

North Four, North London magazine, Hammerton Brewery, beer, hops, casks, pints, drinks

Prices start from around £2.20 for a half and up to £4.80 for a pint – not too shabby for London (but then some of us are Northern, so). The casks on offer change month-to-month, so it’s worth checking out beforehand what’s on. But to be honest, they’re all pretty fantastic.

The first to grab to quench your thirst would be the 5.7% N7 IPA. Citrusy and hoppy, it’s a delight for the pending summer months. Fun fact: it’s brewed from six different hops from the US and NZ. Then, move onto the N1 pale at 4.1%, sampling the Blank Slate table pale 3.3% as a cheeky half. Sessionable.

Don’t like beer? Seriously? Well okay there’s the unfiltered, unpasteurised delicately fruity Pentonville lager at 4.7%. And of course their famous stout. Hammerton was once renowned in the 19th century for its stout, brewed with fresh wild Maldon Oysters. At 5.3% it’s heavy, but beautiful.

Depending on the month, and if they’re running dry, there’s up to five more beers on offer for your perusal. So really you’re wasting time reading this. Clear your calendar before payday and start saving.

North Four, North London magazine, Hammerton Brewery, beer, hops, casks, pints, drinks

Oh and there’s street food, but (like us) you’ll probably end up in the chicken shop after countless halves, or were they pints? Who knows.

In more exciting news, the Hammerton announced that they’re opening their very own pub. It’s currently known as the Wig & Gown, and still located in the heart of Islington, Holloway Road.

It’s a 13 minute walk, according to Google, from their warehouse and the Hammerton team have some great plans in store. With apparently a huge Arsenal following at the moment, there’s eyes on a full renovation (…come on you Spurs). They’re aiming to launch your new haunt at the end of May, early June.

So with a taproom open at the end of every month – and a brand spanking new pub on the horizon – the Hammerton team are a microbrewery to watch.

In the meantime, let’s get hammered!

Next taproom dates: April 28th and 29th

Keep up to date with all things Hammerton here.

Thirsty for more? Take a tour of our Beavertown visit.

Photos via Hammerton Brewery, first image c/o Emmie Harrison.

North Four, North London magazine, green rooms hotel, arts, culture, review, interiors, design, photography, wood green
Eat & Drink Lifestyle

My First Night at Green Rooms Hotel

Staying in a hotel one mile from where you actually live feels strange enough, but doing it on your own is even stranger. These photos are a visual record of me wandering the lonely corridors of a new boutique hotel between the hours of 10-12pm. I would describe the decor as handmade but not cheap, minimal but not clinical. It has the feeling that money has been spent on the things that matter.

North Four, North London magazine, cheese, fromage, cheese festival, n1, islington, market, festival, food, gouda, edam, brie, camembert, wheel of cheese
Eat & Drink

You Feta Brie-lieve it: Cheese Festival Comes to North London

The rumours are true: a cheese festival exists and it’s coming to North London. This Sunday. Be there or be … cheese-less I suppose. But you’ve gouda get there early:  If you’re as keen as brie and one of the first fifty fromage fondlers to show, you’re in the running for a free bottle of Black Cow’s pure milk vodka. Traders will be setting up stalls along Islington’s Chapel Market: from the Raclette Brothers and Mac to the Future to La Fromagerie and The Cheese Truck.

North Four, North London magazine, dream phone, dream talk, sound art, collaboration, musician, artist, london, phone boxes
Culture Lifestyle

Dream Talk: Sound Art for Your Commute

Dream Talk. It’s like Dream Phone, but not at all. Artist Emma Alonze and musician Andy Becker have joined forces to collaborate on a (possibly prophetic) new sound art project. Londoners are invited to take a moment out of their daily commute, routine or journey and immerse themselves in a narrated collection of dreams. Taking three years worth of forty winks, Alonze has gathered and narrated a chosen few to be set to an ambient soundtrack by Becker.


Between the Sheets at the Underbelly Festival

Holy smoke, her nipples are on fire! Somebody pass the woman an extinguisher. Wait, why is she climbing into that giant margarita glass - does she not know it's highly flammable? She's going to need to be doused with a sizable portion of aloe vera gel at this rate, the poor lamb. 

North Four, North London magazine, events, to do, 100, keeping it 100, hackney arts
Culture Events List

Top Four "Keeping it 💯" Workshops

If there's anything the new moon today has told us, it's that it's time to be our true selves. That's what my horoscope told me today anyway. But what does that mean exactly? It means that if you want to eat honey loops for lunch, you 100% can. It means if you feel like learning how to make a bouquet instead of working on your tax forms, you 100% can. It also means if you want to learn how the deep throat (singing technique) you don't have to explain yourself. You're keeping it .

North Four, North London magazine, eroc, skateboarding, skater dog, french bulldog, frenchie, skateboard, halfpipe, interview, internet sensation, instagram star, tony hawk, fanbase

Who is Behind Eroc the Skateboarding Dog?

Our exclusive meeting with Eroc: the Beyonce of the skateboarding dog world. Eroc the french bulldog is making waves. With fans like Tony Hawk, BBC Radio and over 30k followers on Instagram (and counting), Eroc has also become something of an online sensation. His viral status comes and goes, randomly popping up on online social media channels every now and again to generate hundreds of thousands of views and clicks via the likes of Buzzfeed, Time Out and rogue iPhone filmers.

North Four, North London magazine, protest, opinion piece, lifestyle, trump, women's march, brexit, riots, uprising, human rights, march, rally

Protest is Dead! Long Live Protest!

We all have our own ways of dealing with life when things get shitty. Having a big cry and getting it all out can be incredibly therapeutic, and even more so when we find ourselves repeating the same line over and over through the tears. “He’s a dick!” or “I’m not a bad person!” These little lines of reinforcement help us push through the crappy feeling. Sometimes we might even revert to a hearty little stamp on the floor / kick of some unsuspecting object. It feels surprisingly satisfying when the rage sets in and we feel helpless.

North Four, North London magazine, trio da kali, musicians, live music, gig, stoke newington, the old church, tickets, events

Contemporary Malian Sounds in Stokey

This Friday sees the release of Malian master musicians, Trio Da Kali’s new album Ladilikan. Fusing rich, expressive vocals with traditional instruments like the balafon and bass ngoni, this is a beautiful mix of ancient Mande culture and contemporary Malian sounds. Luckily for us North Londoners, we have the opportunity to see the trio play live in the rather fitting ethereal surrounds of Stoke Newington Church next month. 

North Four, North London magazine, sylvanian familes, store, monsell road, finsbury park, toys, toyshop, collectibles, rare, dolls

On your Doorstep: Inside Sylvanian World

Walking along Monsell Road in Finsbury Park, we spy the charming exterior of a shop looking like something out of a children’s book circa 1932. Beneath a green and white striped awning, a whimsical new world of mini animals awaits. Once inside we stumble about the store in hushed awe, reaching over a book of minuscule carpet samples/ family of miniature otters to tap a tiny bell.

North Four, north London magazine, outdoor cinema, pizza, sodo pizzeria, snug, events, refreshments, foodie, picnic

Kids and Big Kids: Pizza, Curry and Open Air Cinema

Whether you’re looking for something to entertain your kids, your friends’ kids or that particularly large man child in your life, you might just have lucked out. Snug are hosting an open air screening of The Incredibles next Saturday evening. There will be tasty sourdough pizzas from Sodo Pizza (Upper Clapton) and ultimate authentic curries from Rice n Spice, Northwold Road.

North Four, North London magazine, vegetarian restaurant, ceremony, veggie, cuisine, risotto, dish
Eat & Drink

Ceremony: A New Take On Veggie Cuisine

Coming soon to a Tufnell Park near you is a whole new vegetable patch of delights / wheat field to run vicariously through. It’s time to get excited for Ceremony: a brand new bar/restaurant serving modern British veggie cuisine. Although the website remains tantalisingly mysterious, you can glean more info from their well stocked insta.

Spring Kind, Pit Party, North Four Magazine, Music, North London, London
Culture Eat & Drink Events List

Top 4 Weird Things to do This September

Sound baths, pit parties, fake cheese and nipples, these are a few of our favourite things, said no one ever. Bored of drinking down the pub every evening? Unlikely, but bare with me. Sometimes you just want to let down your hair, shake it off and do something down right odd of an evening... followed by a pint at the pub.

North Four, North London magazine, texlationship, online dating, illustration, iphones, texting, tinder, julia potocnik

Dating North London: IRL vs Textlationship

It’s been a few months since the last instalment of Online vs Offline. I deleted Bumble, Happn and Tinder, flirted with the idea of, went to a friend’s wedding, heard the vicar call my name instead of the Bride’s and reflected briefly on the crushing inevitability of my own spinsterhood before realising everyone was laughing in the pews and I should probably join them.

north four magazine, north london, stroud green, cheese
Eat & Drink Events

Stroud Green Market Opens This Sunday!

Gluten-free cake consumers, vegan cheese enthusiasts, craft beer connoisseurs, lovers of pies and drinkers of tea; your time is now. Buy food of a quality & variety you can’t easily find in the shops, from organic meat to vegan cheese, fish caught that morning to pickles which have been fermenting for months, at Stroud Green market.

North Four, North London magazine, the finsbury, finsbury park, n4, music venue, gigs, folk

Free Cake and Gin Soaked Folk Pop

Who’s up for free entry, free cake and free folk (except for a jaunty little hat that is passed around for donations)? Get down to The Finsbury this Wednesday eve for a little mid week hootenanny and celebrate some of the best in new live music from the ‘acoustic, singer-songwriter & indie-folk scene’. Host with the most, Zoe Konez (“Ridiculously talented, Konez handles her guitar like she was born with it” - For Folk's Sake) will be deftly introducing each act from gin soaked folk popster herself, Penniless Cove to German indie band, Kalon.


Lamps, Records, Frenchies: The Big London Flea

What if you could mix the joys of your local Sunday car boot and all it’s dog perving potential with your favourite vintage clothes shops and high end antique markets? Within the sparkling depths of Dalson’s former ABC cinema, you’ll find The Big London Flea: London’s largest indoor vintage market.