There are quite a few London Breweries that are located in railway arches. In fact that day, we'd visited two, but this time we were heading for a new arch and not a new brewery, but a new craft beer outlet. Or is it a pub? Well, we'll see.
The area around Cannon St station is suit territory, so the new Pelt Trader, a Euston Tap offshoot I believe, should have a ready audience during the week, but on a Saturday it was fair to say that the place was pretty empty. To be fair though, it was the first week of trading. Now I don't know why it is called the Pelt Trader as I suspect, even digging into the dim and distant, that there hasn't been that much pelt trading on this spot, though maybe some historian will point out I'm wrong and that woad covered precursor Londoners did indeed trade pelts from here, before catching the tube home. It is a big arch is this. Not small at all in fact, with a sort of grown up version of the Euston Tap's bar, complete with American style taps at the back, a few seats and high tables and a lot of brickwork. It felt cavernous, but all the same, I reckon when a bit more full, it will have quite a decent atmosphere. As an observation, it could probably do with some posters or other such artwork on the walls too, to break up the expanse of brick a bit.
I said "we" in the first paragraph and the we in this case was Tyson the Beerhound with a small but devoted bunch of his acolytes. Down from the grim North to part with their brass in exchange for exotic Southern beers, they had a cheery determination about their day out in Smokely. They had seen off Kernel and Partizan and the day was still young. We filled the place up a bit, but oddly there was two different stag parties that wandered in. Why two such sets of hedonistic adventurers should choose to wander around a deserted Cannon Street is a mystery, but there they were all the same. Some were even choosing from the beer list, no doubt having a well earned break from Kopperberg with shooter chasers.
Ah yes beer. Pretty similar in line up to the Euston Tap, with Bristol Brewing leading the cask offerings and around a dozen keg beers also available. Quality, as you'd expect from the ET mob, was universally high. Proper conditioning and temperature to the fore - that's what I like to see. I had Moor
Nor’ Hop which wasn't that cloudy and tasted pretty damn good and a drop of Adnam's Fat Sprat, also very good. At least I think it was Fat Sprat. Must take notes. E pronounced her Jever to be up to snuff too. Unlike the ET, there are rather substantial toilets on the same level, so that's all good, though I do hope they are kept clean when it is busier. A bit of general tidying up and the odd mopping would not have gone amiss, but early days.
Overall? More a bar than a pub, but it still gave a great first impression even when very quiet. You can't say fairer than that.
I understand the food offering when it comes will be pizza forward. Pelt Trader, Arch 3 Cannon Street, The City, London, EC4N 6AP
A bit of a CV. Tandleman is a veteran beer lover, local CAMRA Chairman and activist, beer writer, beer reviewer and pursuer of all things good in beer. He lives in the North West of England and London. Despite his CAMRA membership, he does not limit himself to cask conditioned beer, though he believes that cask conditioning, when done correctly and appropriately, brings a quality to beer that is hard to equal by any other kind of presentation. He is a strong supporter of Northern methods of beer dispense and avidly detests poorly presented beer and dislikes pasteurisation. He regularly visits Germany, has conducted corporate British and German beer tastings for CAMRA at the Great British Beer Festival where he has worked for years on Biere Sans Frontieres and was Deputy Organiser at CAMRA's very successful National Winter Ales Festival in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 and at the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival from 2013 to date. He admires good brewers wherever they are and has travelled extensively in pursuit of good beer to drink.
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